Don’t forget the National Emergency Fund when disaster strikes

Don’t forget the National Emergency Fund when disaster strikes

When a tornado stormed through Selma, Ind., on March 14, it didn’t take long for the town’s American Legion to mobilize to help the community.

Post 437 set up a lost and found table with items scattered by the tornado’s damaging winds.

“There’s a lot of photos. What I found interesting was the report card from 1941,” David Roach, vice commander for American Legion District 10, told Fox 59 News.

Selma wasn’t the only community impacted by the tornado. District 10 Commander Scott Meyer noted on the district’s Facebook page that communities in the district “have been significantly impacted by the storms yesterday. The American Legion family stands ready to assist in any way possible.”

That’s a year-round, nationwide promise by the Legion Family. In Clarksville, Tenn., where a December tornado killed four and injured 61 others, Posts 289 and 143 “provided shelter, relief supplies and a shoulder to lean on,” Post 289 2nd Vice Commander Ernest Schmidt wrote in sharing details on the posts’ efforts on Legiontown.

He shared that Post 289 donated $2,500 for the city’s homeless veterans and tornado victims, and contributed 30 cots to Post 143 to set up a sleeping area in their post building.

Schmidt also emphasized the Legion’s National Emergency Fund (NEF), which provides grants to meet immediate needs in the aftermath of a disaster.

The NEF  provides up to $3,000 for qualified Legionnaires or Sons of The American Legion, and up to $10,000 for qualified American Legion posts which have been affected by declared natural disasters.

To be eligible for an individual grant, the Legionnaire or Son:

1.     Must have been displaced from their primary residence due to damage sustained during a declared natural disaster.

2.     Must provide copies of receipts of items required to meet immediate needs, such as housing, food, water, clothing, etc., during the period immediately following the disaster.

3.     Must be an active member at the time of the disaster and the time of application.

The American Legion has created a presentation which discusses details on the NEF grant, including what the NEF covers and does not cover and how to complete the NEF application. Click here to view that presentation.

For more details on the NEF, click here.