State Elks National Veterans Service Commission Chairman
Veteran Administration Services Representative
Togus VA Medical Center Maine Elks Association
David E. Hassen Maj. US Army (Ret.)
Augusta Elks Lodge #964
Click on the links below for more information:
Elks Veterans Service Newsletter (EVSN) (sign-up)
VA Resource Guide (pdf)
VA Voluntary Services Home (US Gov)
VAV Overview (pdf file)
Since 1917 the Elks have been actively involved in veteran’s causes.
“SO LONG AS THERE ARE VETERANS, THE BENEVOLENT & PROTECTIVE ORDER OF THE ELKS WILL NEVER FORGET THEM.”
ELKS NATIONAL VETERANS SERVICE COMMISSION (ENVSC)
ADOPT –A – VET
The purpose of the program is to establish close and personal contacts with our veterans
VETERAN COMFORT CARE KITS
Each lodge in Maine can provide amenities and necessities for veterans in veterans hospitals, homes those we have adopted and the all too many homeless veterans.
ARMY OF HOPE
The purpose of the program is to assist the families of Military Reservists and the National Guard who have been called to active duty.
SPECIAL PROGRAMS OF INTEREST
Bugles Across America to provide the playing of TAPS at funerals for all veterans.
The Veterans History Project is sponsored by the Library of Congress. It involves our volunteers interviewing veterans about their experiences while serving in the military.
LEATHER AND GLOVE PROCUREMENT
The fingerless for wheelchair veterans are made available at no cost.
The leather is made available to recreational therapist who work with veterans on a wide range of projects.
MEDALS OF VALOR
May be presented to deserving families of those who have made the supreme sacrifice in the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan.
RE – CREATION
The Elks National Veterans Service Commission (ENVSC) has been partners with Re – Creation USA in providing entertainment to our nations veterans who are housed in VA Medical Centers. Re – Creation is a group of young men and women between the ages of 18 and 26, who have given a year of their lives to perform this act of love. They do so with no salary. 2017 Summer Show Dates TBD.
VETERANS REMEMBRANCE MONTH
November is Veterans Remembrance Month and all lodges are asked to run a special event for the benefit of their committee. The proceeds are used for special events in the VA Medical Center during the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays.
MAINE ELKS ASSOCIATION PROGRAMS
Veterans Administration Volunteer Services (VAVS) – VAVS (pdf file)
*Volunteer Drivers Needed for 2017*
Since its inception in 1930, the Department of Veterans Affairs has encouraged and sought citizen volunteer assistance in its Medical Centers and Domiciliaries. By 1946, it became obvious that in order to function effectively and eliminate duplication, a viable organization was needed.
Thus, the VAVS was established to provide members of Veterans, Service and Fraternal Organizations an opportunity to assume important roles in determining the quality of life for hospitalized veterans.
The plan included an Advisory Committee comprised of National Representatives of participating organizations. The Order is represented on this prestigious committee by the Director of the National Veterans Service Commission. Through its involvement with VAVS, the Elks provide effective use of its Lodges, members and State Associations in “Serving Our Nation’s Veterans”.
The VAVS is made up of 60 National Organizations and meets annually to conduct business, elect officers and hold workshops for the instruction of its members. Regional organizations also render meaningful support to several of these activities.
There is something everyone can do, donate needed items, money or the most precious of all, your time. At the Community Living Center you can help feed patients. There are many other possibilities for volunteering your time, a driver .clerk .lifeguard, greeter, patient rep, pharmacy technician and many more.
Financial support is needed to fund the numerous programs, to name a few, coffee, canteen coupon books, diabetic snacks, and newspaper funds. A wish list is updated monthly and published in the MEA email newsletter.
Special Request items that are not funded by the VA.
Items that are needed for patients to actively use their time are: IPODS, IPADS and WIFI Access.
VETERANS ADMINISTRATION HOMELESS PROGRAM
Annual Stand – Down
For homeless veterans. Maine Elks provide the noon meal and a take away lunch for all veterans.
The Elks and Legion have supported Fundraising efforts of Debbie Myers and Friends who put on an annual 6 hour concert to raise money. Her efforts for the first 5 years has resulted in over $150,000 which was donated to the VA to help fund its homeless program.
Is the annual health and wellness day held throughout the country. The Maine Elks supports the event with an ice cream stand and a dunk tank. The proceeds support the homeless program. House hold items are also collected at this time and has averaged over $25,000 per year in cash and goods. The 2017 VA 2K is scheduled for May 17th at Togus.
Elks National Foundation (ENF) provides 200 grants to the lodges that have a need and submits a request. The $2,000 grant is awarded based on need and first come first served. In the past 2 years Maine has been awarded 6 grants for veteran’s projects totaling $12,000. These are awarded every year and each lodge is eligible to apply.
All veterans may have a cane made especially for them. All that is needed is the veterans DD-214 and a donation made out to George Gunning.
Mail to, 9 Duck Lane, Windsor, ME, 04363 .
His telephone number is 207-445-2078
These are professionally done with the veteran’s branch and other individual items attached to the cane shaft. George and his wife are approaching their 3000th cane.
The Courage of Sam Bird (Newspaper article)