Daily Point of Light # 2068 Jan 7, 2002

The Boyd American Legion Auxiliary Junior Division Post 326 has a sincere commitment to making life better for the youth and elderly in Boyd, Wisconsin. They are especially dedicated to serving children with life challenging or life threatening illnesses. The Junior members are an example to their peers as well as adults because of their spirit and selfless attitudes. They work at Alumni tournaments, school play concessions, bike-a-thons, raffles, and other fundraisers to help children facing difficult times.

Thirty-five Junior members worked over 150 hours at the Alumni tournament. There they handled statistics, admissions, registration, and concessions. The Juniors received money from concessions and used it to buy a Spinoza Bear for Logan. The bear is a stuffed bear that has a hidden cassette player that helps console children with life challenging disabilities. Logan is a five-year-old with a chromosome disorder who cannot walk or talk. Logan also has poor vision and lacks motor skills. The Juniors adopted Logan as a special friend and even invited him to ride on their floats in the Memorial Day parade.

The Juniors also work at the school play concessions. The money earned from there went to the purchase of a computer for another friend, Hailey. She is a two-year-old little girl with Downs syndrome who is recovering from heart surgery that also slowed her development. Hailey and 10 of her friends are able to participate with the Juniors in the water therapy program. The Junior members have volunteered more than 50 hours this year with this particular program.

Another project the Juniors work with is the bike-a-thon. The members organize, plan, and participate in this event. The proceeds go to the Make-a-Wish foundation that provides a favorite wish for a child with a life threatening illness. The Juniors also sell raffle tickets, and the proceeds go to Zackary’s Benefit Fund. Zackary is a six-year-old boy who was diagnosed with leukemia and undergoes chemotherapy treatment. The funds are used to help with his medical costs. The Juniors were also able to purchase Zackary a radio controlled truck.

Thirty of the Juniors helped to put on a Halloween youth dance. The ladies organized the dance, decorated, ran a fortune telling booth, served as DJ’s, and helped with games and clean up. The proceeds earned at the dance were used to purchase Nintendo games for Nicklaus who is a seven-year-old boy that underwent brain surgery to remove a tumor. The games are used for therapy.

Other projects include fund-raisers used to purchase school supplies for needy children, canned food drives, clothing, and blanket drives, as well as book drives that help fill hospital libraries for children. They have also collected pull tabs for the Ronald McDonald House, taken mentally disabled children on field trips, visited nursing homes and taken residents for walks, taken treats to shut-ins on holidays, helped the elderly with yard work and errands, and delivered groceries to those that needed their services. The Juniors also volunteer more than 300 hours helping their peers that need extra help along with teaching youth sport skills.