Frenchman Butte Branch No. 183 has been busy!
Congratulations to you all!
Pilgrimage of Remembrance
Every two years, each command within the Royal Canadian Legion selects an individual to participate in a Pilgrimage of Remembrance throughout France, Belgium and the Netherlands. During the 15 day experience, Legion “Pilgrims” are given the opportunity to visit WWI and WWII battlefields, pay their respects in cemeteries, reflect at memorials and explore museums throughout northern Europe.
The Legion “Pilgrims” see sites that invoke images of despair, tragedy and triumph. They recall the invasions, witness life in the trenches and reflect upon accomplishments and sacrifices. More importantly, they gain a deeper perspective and understanding of the hardships our veterans endured. Upon their return to Canada, the Pilgrims are uniquely prepared to share their experience and stories with others.
Connie Jo Wilson was chosen as our 2011 Pilgrim based on her commitment to the Legion and her vast experience working with youth. Following her pilgrimage, Connie created a moving and informative presentation that she is happy to share with schools, youth or community groups. For more information, or to book Connie for a presentation, please contact:
Pilgrimage of Remembrance 2011
Saskatchewan Command will be seeking our next Pilgrim in early 2013. If you are interested in participating in this program, please contact your local branch of the Royal Canadian Legion in January 2013.
Royal Commonwealth Ex-services League (RCEL)
As a member of the Royal Commonwealth Ex-services League (RCEL), The Royal Canadian Legion helps support veterans and ex-service members of the Commonwealth and former Commonwealth countries. The RCEL is a union of 57 ex-service organizations from 47 Commonwealth and former Commonwealth countries that promotes the welfare of Commonwealth veterans and their dependents while helping them to meet their own charitable objectives.
Any person who has served in the military of a Commonwealth force is eligible for RCEL assistance as well as those who served afloat with the merchant navies of Commonwealth countries during hostilities. Eligibility also extends to dependants.
The primary objects of the RCEL are simple. They are:
- to seek to ensure that no Commonwealth ex-service man or woman or their dependants shall be without help when in need; and,
- to promote the welfare of Commonwealth ex-service men and women throughout the Commonwealth by assisting any veterans’ organization that is a member of the League to carry out their charitable activities and encourage the various organizations to cooperate.
Supporting Caribbean Veterans
A number of years ago it was decided that The Royal Canadian Legion could be most effective, as an RCEL member, if it were to assume a special relationship and specific responsibility for veterans and their dependants in the Caribbean. As a result, the role of The Royal Canadian Legion, within the League, is to look after the interests of veterans in the Caribbean area. Having made the commitment, and using donations from Legion branches, the RCEL Welfare Fund was established.
In all, 14 of the RCEL’s locations are in the Caribbean. They are:
Legion funds used to support these programs come from the membership through direct donations, or, on occasion, a small levy on each poppy sold to branches – and general Dominion Command funds. The fund is administered by the Legion’s RCEL (Canada) Committee and assists veterans in the 15 countries in the Caribbean region. Providing individual assistance for more than 375 destitute war veterans, their widows and dependents is the primary goal of the committee. The fund can also be used to help provide; adequate housing for those in need, poppy materials to assist in Remembrance and Poppy Campaigns at the local level, and support to the organizations in managing the affairs of their veterans. Clothing, eyeglasses and surplus medical equipment are also collected for shipment to those in need.
The Royal Canadian Legion is committed to supporting the objects of the RCEL. The funds used in all efforts in the most recent years is approximately $300,000. Through participation in their programs the Legion does much to improve the lives of the less fortunate among the Caribbean’s veteran population.
You can help…donations for the RCEL, whether from a branch or an individual, are greatly appreciated and help to ensure the continued support of commonwealth veterans.
Photo montage: Dominion President Pat Varga visits with Commonwealth veterans in the Caribbean.