Since the end of World War I, The American Legion has become the world’s largest veteran’s organization with a membership that now approaches three million. Our powerful lobby in Washington oversees just about every law Congress passes that pertains to veterans’ affairs. Each American Legion post is a separate, self-supporting, non-profit corporation. Each post can choose to become either a social club or a community service organization, or any combination thereof.
In June of 2009 the founders of San Tan Valley American Legion Post 97 chose to form a 100% community service organization. In addition to helping local veterans and their families, Post 97 created San Tan Valley Youth Programs (STVYP) to “promote American Legion Youth Programs as well as the activities of other non-profit organizations that work for the betterment of children” in San Tan Valley.
San Tan Valley is an unincorporated area of North Central Pinal County which has three high schools, 13 elementary schools and four charter schools. Being unincorporated, we have no municipal parks & recreation department to supplement the limited extracurricular activities of our schools. This scarcity of supplemental youth programs has made it easier for undesirables to subject many of our kids to a negative culture of drugs, sex and mayhem. As a positive alternative, Post 97 created STVYP. STVYP is already laying the ground work for what could become a comprehensive youth center for San Tan Valley.
Funding is an ongoing challenge. No American Legion post receives financial support from either the state or the national American Legion organizations. For funding, we depend on (1) grants, (2) the support of our local business community and (3) our own fundraising efforts. So that we can direct whatever funds we raise back into our community programs, we have chosen not to be saddled with the expense of maintaining a physical location of our own. Currently, Post 97 and Auxiliary meet at Central Arizona College, San Tan Valley campus, 3736 Bella Vista Rd, San Tan Valley, AZ 85143. A pot luck social begins at 6 p.m., followed by a meeting from 7-8 p.m. Members and guests are encouraged to attend.
For more information call: 507-459-2879.