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Why Join AVVA?

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Associates of Vietnam Veterans of America (AVVA) is a unique organization, pulling together Veterans, their families, their friends, and people who support their issues into one united group.

AVVA is NOT an auxiliary. It is a Nonprofit Veteran support organization. The most significant advantage we have is that we are made up of Veterans and non-veterans from all walks of life; working together for common goals. Because of our status, Congress listens to our individual voices regarding pending or suggested legislation, when we walk into our representative or senator's office to speak out.

AVVA was born out of people who wanted to support the actions and causes of the Vietnam Veterans of America, whose main motto is: "Never again will one generation of Veterans abandon another". We are dedicated to keeping this motto alive in the future. AVVA members include Veterans from all eras, military personnel and their families, and community members who want to help support the needs and issues of all Veterans. In short, AVVA is anyone and everyone who wishes to work towards these goals.

Being a member of the Associates of Vietnam Veterans of America gives you the fellowship in which to accomplish all manner of tasks and programs that support the needs of our nation's Veterans.

If you look at our programs (links in menu above) you will see that AVVA is hard at work, helping to improve the circumstance of Veterans and their families in both large and small ways. Our VISTA Program encourages 'giving back' to local communities and tracks the 1000's of hours of Volunteer work by our members throughout the country; Paper Safes give Veterans a means of making life less stressful for their family and friends in a time when things can be very chaotic, again, at no cost to the Veteran. AVVA gives grants to organizations helping homeless Veterans and other Veteran causes, and supports educational programs regarding the effects of PTSD, Survivor Benefits, as well as Agent Orange and other toxins.

When you join AVVA you join a family that stretches across this country, whose common goal is to help keep this nation's promises to all our Veterans.

In the words of one of our current members:

A wonderful article by Lisa LaDieu of Chapter 377, NY, explaining how
she feels about being an AVVA Member!


      How does one describe how they feel about a period in time that
they weren't a part of?  I guess it is possible to come up with a
feeling or understanding of it by reading about it or seeing it in a
movie or TV.  Honestly, if you want to really know, then you have to
ask a person who experienced it and to the best of their ability
explain it to you.  This subject matter however is very private and
sensitive and can be very hard to talk about.  What I am speaking of
is being a Veteran.  I was not a member of the service but did,
however, come from a family that had many relatives that served. My
father was Army in WWll, and cousins and Uncles that served in
Vietnam.  Growing up I never could get a grasp on any war because I
didn't understand why anyone would ever want to voluntarily risk their
life.  In my head the world was always rosy and unless I saw it in
person or it was happening at that time, I didn't believe it.  Wars to
me were events that happened so long ago, they were fought, there was
a winner and a loser.  You read about them in your history books at
school but I personally never let it sink in that they were real.

     It wasn't until I was asked to sing The National Anthem at
Motorcycle rides and events that involved our military veterans was I
able to start to let it in. Over the years being around and talking to
said men and women I then learned that these horrific and senseless
times in our history really happened.  The emotions I began to feel
were sad and angry because I know so many veterans now, and I hate
that they have to live with what they went through.

     After getting to know some of these men and women I was asked to
do much more than just sing.  I was invited to participate in events,
on a voluntary level.  Wreaths Across America was where I was asked to
join an organization called the A.V.V.A   I knew nothing of what they
were talking about and after it was explained to me I couldn't say
"yes" fast enough.  I always wondered what the vests that civilians
and some military people wore at the events.  Some had a few patches
with some pins and some were totally decked out that they looked to be
heavy.  One thing I did notice is that whomever was wearing one, they
looked full of pride, and very proud to be wearing it.

     Being a member of the A.V.V.A has changed my life for the better.
I have connected with so many and have made life long friendships.
There are a few that I now consider family and couldn't imagine my
life without them.  I have been told that my joining, and singing and
volunteering has given Chapter 377 a spark.  A younger perspective on
all sorts of things, but really, they have sparked me. I participate
more, get out more, sing more, and just generally feel better knowing
I can turn to any member and they are there for me. I guess it fills a
void where my father was.  I know it does.  If my father was alive now
I know he would be extremely proud of his only daughter.  I just wish
I had listened better and asked more about his time in the military.
I have so many pictures, so many with my dad in them and have no idea
what they are or why he was in them.  Who were the people in the
pictures beside him, and did they come home.  The answers to these
questions I will never know.

     I may have gotten a little off track with the reason why I am
writing this.  It has just really made me realize that I do love being
a member of A.V.V.A   I will not let these members of my "FAMILY" be
forgotten.  I am here to listen, I am here to help when I am needed, I
will proudly wear my vest and know that I will keep the V.V.A. alive
for as long as I can.  That is why it is so very important for new
members to join.  Do not let future generations be oblivious to the
truth of the Vietnam Veteran.

With All My Heart and Soul
Lisa LaDieu



Click here for the membership application --> Join Now.

Click here for the member application for Dual VVA/AVVA membership