As a member of the armed forces, you are part of one of the biggest communities in the world. In addition to active duty, the greater military community includes active duty, guard and reserve, retirees, veterans as well as spouses and family members. There are a large number of military associations devoted to serving different segments of the community for lobbying efforts, fraternity and support. Below is a listing of some of the more prominent military associations with a brief description of each. We’re sure there one just right for you.
Air Force Aid Society
The Air Force Aid Society (AFAS) is the official charity of the United States Air Force, incorporated in 1942 as a private non-profit organization. For over 68 years, the Air Force Aid Society has supported the Air Force mission by providing worldwide emergency assistance, sponsoring education assistance programs and offering an array of base community enhancement programs that improve quality of life for Airmen and their families.
Air Force Association
The Air Force Association (AFA) is an independent, nonprofit, civilian education organization promoting public understanding of aerospace power and the pivotal role it plays in the security of the nation. AFA publishes Air Force Magazine, conducts national symposia and disseminates information through outreach programs. It sponsors professional development seminars and recognizes excellence in the education and aerospace fields through national awards programs. AFA presents scholarships and grants to Air Force active duty, Air National Guard and Air Force Reserve members and their dependents; and awards educator grants to promote science and math education at the elementary and secondary school level.
Air Force Sergeants Association
The Air Force Sergeants Association (AFSA) is dedicated exclusively to the enlisted grades of Air Force Active Duty, Air National Guard, and Air Force Reserve Command, retired, veteran and family members. AFSA is an international organization based in Washington, D.C. dedicated to speaking out on behalf of the people behind the stripes. The AFSA mission at headquarters level is to advocate for improved quality of life and economic fairness that will support the well-being of Air Force enlisted members and their families. With nearly 111,000 members, AFSA has led the way on Capitol Hill, in the Pentagon and in the White House and has earned the recognition and respect of our Nation’s leaders for its sustained role as the “Voice of the Total Air Force Enlisted Force.”
The American Legion was chartered and incorporated by Congress in 1919 as a patriotic veterans organization devoted to mutual helpfulness. It is the nation’s largest veterans service organization, committed to mentoring and sponsorship of youth programs in communities throughout the U.S. , advocating patriotism and honor, promoting a strong national security, and continued devotion to our fellow servicemembers and veterans.
American Military Retirees Association
American Military Retirees Association (AMRA) goal is to work on behalf of military retirees and their families, to protect their rights and benefits under the law, and to lobby on their behalf in Washington, DC and elsewhere. Eligibility for the Association includes military retirees, medically retired and 100% service-connected (Disabled T&P), and surviving spouses. The Association welcomes retirees from all ranks of all branches of the Uniformed Services. Individuals retiring from the Guard and Reserves are eligible, as are surviving spouses of retirees.
American Red Cross
The American Red Cross’ unwavering commitment to members of the U.S. military, its veterans and their families continues to grow and develop. Today, the Red Cross is meeting the needs of a changing military and the expanding services to veterans. Red Cross support of military members and their families enhances morale and contributes to increased operational capability in several ways: linking military families during an emergency; connecting families with local community resources; providing resiliency training; supporting wounded warriors and military hospitals.
American Veterans (AMVETS) stands as a powerful advocate of veterans' rights. AMVETS does this by working together to make a positive difference in each other's lives by: providing professional advice about government entitlements; volunteering time with the hospitalized; actively pursuing veterans' issues on Capitol Hill. Members have been building on this tradition of service since World War II to the benefit of fellow veterans as well as the communities in which they live.
Armed Forces Benefit Association
Armed Forces Benefit Association (AFBA) continues to honor the mission set forth by its founders—to promote the welfare of its members and their families and to advance and safeguard their economic interest by providing high quality, low cost life insurance products and other financial benefits and services in peace and in war.
Armed Services Mutual Benefit Association
The Armed Services Mutual Benefit Association (ASMBA) provides comprehensive, affordable insurance coverage to military personnel and their families. ASMBA was established in 1963 by military personnel headed for Vietnam who wanted to provide for their families' security, but found they couldn't obtain insurance coverage because they were going into a war zone. They created ASMBA - a true non-profit fraternal military benefit association, which provides security and peace of mind for members of the Armed Services and their families. And since value of life is not determined by rank or branch of service, ASMBA's founders created life insurance plans available to all ranks of all services, during all times of peace or war, with no rank, duty, or geographical restrictions.
Armed Services YMCA
The Armed Services YMCA is found in the military community right on base. The ASYMCA— supported primarily by private donations—provides family and youth programs that the military is unable to provide, but that military leaders identify as priority needs. The ASYMCA tries to provide whatever is needed by the families of our courageous young military personnel.
Army and Air Force Mutual Aid Association
AAFMAA is a non-profit, membership association with over 89,000 members whose mission is to be the premier provider of insurance, financial and survivor services to the American Armed Forces community. All member families receive Survivor Assistance Services, including prompt benefits payments and filing of claim forms with Government and insurance providers.
Army Aviation Association of America
The Army Aviation Association of America (AAAA) is a not-for-profit organization with constituencies that include Active Duty, Reserve Component, Civilian, Industry, Retired, affiliated organizations, and friends of Army Aviation.
Army Reserve Association
ARA is a private, non-profit educational organization that supports America's Army and its community based federal United States Army Reserve members, of all ranks, Officers, Enlisted, Civilians, Retirees and family members. Its mission is to provide representation of the USAR at the local, state, and national legislative and leadership levels and to the American people, by informing and educating. The ARA also initiates and participates in other not-for-profit programs and public service projects to improve the quality of life and safety of Army Reserve and civilian personnel of all ranks, and their families, as well as retirees, and veterans.
Association of Military Surgeons of the United States
AMSUS was organized in 1891 and chartered by Congress in 1903 to advance the knowledge of healthcare within the federal agencies and to increase the effectiveness of its members. It is dedicated to all aspects of federal medicine - professional, scientific, educational and administrative. Presently its nearly 8,000 members represent all healthcare disciplines and serve in the Active and Reserve Components of all of the uniformed services as well as the Department of Defense and the Department of Veterans Affairs.
Association of Naval Aviation
The Association of Naval Aviation is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization whose mission is to educate the general public about the overall military status of the United States, to encourage widespread interest as to the importance of naval aviation in the defense of the United States and its allies, to stimulate the collection, preservation and display of historical material concerning the history of naval aviation, and to encourage scientific and technical development of naval aviation.
Association of the United States Army
AUSA is a private, non-profit educational organization that supports America's Army—Active, National Guard, Reserve, Civilians, Retirees, Government Civilians, Wounded Warriors, Veterans, and family members. AUSA provides numerous Professional Development Opportunities at a variety of events both local and national. Since 1950, the Association of the United States Army has worked to support all aspects of national security while advancing the interests of America's Army and the men and women who serve. AUSA represents every American Soldier by: being the voice for all components of America's Army; fostering public support of the Army's role in national security; providing professional education and information programs.
Association of the United States Navy
The Association of the United States Navy(AUSN) members range from those who have previously served, to those currently serving, to those who have retired from service including officers, enlisted, midshipmen, active component and reserve. AUSN recently established a “friends of the Navy” group for those who have not served but who support the Navy and National Defense. AUSN works to take care of service members and their families—by: writing to the President; hosting House and Senate meetings; working with key members of Congress; and encouraging AUSN members to support key
legislation for our membership of nearly 20,000 Navy people.
Coast Guard Auxiliary Association
The Coast Guard Auxiliary Association is a non-profit, 501 (C)(3) organization that provides outreach and educational program products in support of the Auxiliary. The Association also provides the means for operating the national Auxiliary programs and as a source for Auxiliarists to obtain the organizational specific uniform accessories and equipment required to perform their duties.
Disabled American Veterans
Disabled American Veterans (DAV) is a non-profit 501(c)(4)charity dedicated to building better lives for America’s disabled veterans and their families. The DAV’s 1.2 million members provide grassroots advocacy and services in communities nationwide. From educating lawmakers and the public about important issues to supporting services and legislation to help disabled veterans — the DAV is there to promote its message of hope to all who have served and sacrificed.
Enlisted Association of the National Guard of the United States
The Enlisted Association of the National Guard of the United States (EANGUS) is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting the status, welfare and professionalism of Enlisted members of the National Guard by supporting legislation that provides adequate staffing, pay, benefits, entitlements, equipment and installations for the National Guard. EANGUS has a constituency base of over 414,000 soldiers and airmen, their families, as well as thousands of retired members EANGUS maintains a full-time staff headquarted in Alexandria, VA to represent members interests to the Pentagon and on Capitol Hill.
Fleet Reserve Association
The Fleet Reserve Association (FRA) is a congressionally chartered, non-profit organization that represents the interests of the Sea Service community before the U.S. Congress. The Association is named after the Navy’s program for personnel transferring to the Fleet Reserve or Fleet Marine Corps Reserve after 20 or more years of active duty, but less than 30 years for retirement purposes and its membership is comprised of current and former enlisted members of the U.S. Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard.
Gold Star Wives of America
Gold Star Wives of America, Inc. is an organization whose mission is to provide service, support and friendship to the widows and widowers of military personnel who died on active duty or as the result of a service connected cause. GSW was organized in 1945 by the war widows of World War II and has approximately 10,000 members. GSW helps widows and widowers understand and obtain benefits to which they are entitled and networks with other Veterans Service Organizations, the DoD and the Department of Veterans Affairs toward this goal.
Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America
Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA) is the first and largest nonprofit, nonpartisan organization for new veterans, with over 200,000 Member Veterans and supporters nationwide. IAVA is a 21st Century veterans’ organization dedicated to standing with the 2.4 million veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan from their first day home through the rest of their lives. Founded in 2004 by an Iraq veteran, our mission is to improve the lives of Iraq and Afghanistan veterans and their families.
Jewish War Veterans of the USA
The Jewish War Veterans of the USA works to combat anti-Semitism and bigotry. JWV assists the Office of Special Investigation in pursuing Nazi war criminals; supports American youth through scouting, scholarships and anti-drug programs; assists oppressed Jews worldwide; supports strong U.S.-Israeli relations. JWV assists the Veterans' Service Offices in major cities through its hospital, rehabilitation and veterans' service programs. JWV supports the underprivileged, homeless, and handicapped of our nation through a variety of civic betterment projects, including low-cost, federally subsidized senior citizens housing.
Joe Foss Institute
The Joe Foss Institute was established to educate our youth on the importance of America’s unique freedoms and to inspire them to public service. Guided by five values: freedom; patriotism; integrity; service; and character, JFI programs support students and teachers nationwide.
Marine Corps Association
The Marine Corps Association (MCA) formed in 1913 with the goal of “disseminating information concerning the aims, purposes and deeds of the Corps, and the interchange of ideas for the betterment and improvement of its officers and men.” The mission of the MCA is to be the preeminent association and foundation for ALL Marines, active duty, reserve, retired, Marine veterans and friends of the Corps and is dedicated to development and recognition of professional excellence and expanding awareness of the rich traditions, history, and esprit of the United States Marine Corps.
Marine Corps Aviation Association
The Marine Corps Aviation Association (MCAA) is a non-profit organization whose mission is to promote and recognize professional excellence in Marine aviation, support the fraternal bond of its membership, preserve Marine aviation heritage and safeguard the future of Marine aviation through awards programs, events and publications.
Marine Corps League
Members of the Marine Corps League join together in camaraderie and fellowship for the purpose of preserving the traditions and promoting the interests of the United States Marine Corps, banding together those who are now serving in the United States Marine Corps and those who have been honorably discharged from that service that they may effectively promote the ideals of American freedom and democracy, voluntarily aiding and rendering assistance to all Marines and former Marines and to their widows and orphans; and to perpetuate the history of the United States Marine Corps and by fitting acts to observe the anniversaries of historical occasions of particular interest to Marines.
Military Benefit Association
Military Benefit Association is a non-profit organization that sponsors top quality member benefits, including life and health insurance plans for military members and federal government employees. Other valuable benefits and discounts include reduced educational tuition fees and yearly scholarships, savings on auto and home insurance, rental car discounts and VISA Platinum Card.
Military Chaplains Association
The Military Chaplains Association of the United States of America is a professional support and Veterans Service Organization dedicated to the religious freedom and spiritual welfare of our Armed Services members, Veterans, their families, and their survivors. MCA founded in 1925 and chartered in 1950 by the 81st Congress. We are recognized by the Internal Revenue Service with non-profit, tax exempt 501(c)(3) status. Members are serving or have served in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Department of Veterans Affairs, or Air Force Auxiliary Civil Air Patrol chaplaincies. Associate Members come from among other chaplains, chaplain assistants, religious faith group leaders, and those interested in supporting military chaplaincy.
Military Officers Association of America
An independent, nonprofit organization, MOAA is operated exclusively to benefit members of the uniformed services—active duty, former and retired, National Guard and Reserve—and their families and survivors. MOAA is dedicated to preserving their earned entitlements and to maintaining a strong national defense. Six out of 10 retired officers belong to MOAA, as do more than 30,000 active duty officers.
Military Order of the Purple Heart
Chartered by Congress in 1958, The Military Order of the Purple Heart is composed of military men and women who received the Purple Heart Medal for wounds suffered in combat. Although membership is restricted to the combat wounded, the organization supports all veterans and their families with a myriad of nation-wide programs by Chapters and National Service Officers.
National Association for Uniformed Services
The National Association for Uniformed Services (NAUS) represents a broad spectrum of interests. NAUS brings together the diverse concerns, needs and resources of all the services, branches, grades and components, active duty, retired, National Guard, Reserve, other veterans, spouses, survivors, and all Americans who support our interests into a strong, unified legislative force. NAUS works to bring pressure on legislators to preserve and protect earned benefits and ensure a strong national defense.
National Guard Association of the United States
The National Guard Association of the United States (NGAUS) is dedicated to obtaining better equipment and training by petitioning Congress for more resources. NGAUS includes nearly 45,000 current or former Guard officers NGAUS provides states and our member’s unified representation before Congress. The NGAUS legislative department is the lobbying branch of the association. It seeks modern equipment, training, missions and personnel benefits for the Army and Air National Guard by lobbying Congress and the Executive Branch.
National Military Family Association
The National Military Family Association is an organization whose mission is to fight for benefits and programs that strengthen and protect uniformed services families and reflect the Nation’s respect for their service. Spouses, parents, and family members make up its staff and board positions. NMFA speaks up on behalf of military families and empower husbands, wives, and children to understand and access their benefits. NMFA strives to meet the needs of service members and their families with insightful recommendations, innovative programs, and grassroots efforts to better the quality of life for military families.
Naval Enlisted Reserve Association
Naval Enlisted Reserve Association (NERA) is a military advocacy group, who specifically address the agenda of sea-service reservists. Their stated mission is to protect the rights and benefits of enlisted sea-service reservists such as promotion, pay, retirement benefits, personnel strength, and equipment. NERA is a prominent member of a powerful coalition of military advocacy groups dedicated to fighting for service members in the Nation's Capitol. NERA helps maintains national security by ensuring a strong and well-trained Naval, Coast Guard and Marine Corps Reserve. They are the only military association comprised exclusively of enlisted Sea Service Reservists. NERA represents enlisted Sea Service Reservists by providing a singular voice to the Congress, the White House and the Departments of Defense and Transportation regarding issues of benefits and rights.
Navy League of the United States
The Navy League of the United States (NLUS) was founded in 1902 has provided a powerful voice for a stronger sea service to Congress and to the American people. It has grown into the foremost citizens' organization to serve, support, and stand with all the sea services – U.S. Navy, U.S. Marine Corps, U.S. Coast Guard and U.S.-flag Merchant Marine. The Navy League has three missions: to enhance the morale of active duty personnel and their families; to inform Congress and the American public on the importance of strong sea services; and to support youth through programs such as the Naval Sea Cadet Corps, Junior ROTC and Young Marines that expose young people to the values of our sea services.
Navy Mutual Aid Association
Navy Mutual provides life insurance and annuity products to military members and their families. NMAA also assists service members and their survivors in securing federal benefits to which they are legally entitled, and provides education on matters of financial security which are specifically tailored to the military member and family. Navy Mutual is a nonprofit, federally tax-exempt, mutual benefit Veterans Service Organization which was established in 1879 by service members for the purpose of providing financial protection to the service member and family.
Non Commissioned Officers Association
The NCOA was established in 1960 to enhance and maintain the quality of life for noncommissioned and petty officers in all branches of the Armed Forces, National Guard and Reserves. The NCOA offers its members a wide range of benefits and services designed especially for enlisted service members and their families.
Paralyzed Veterans of America
Paralyzed Veterans of America works to maximize the quality of life for its members and all people with spinal cord injury and spinal cord disease (SCI/D) as a leading advocate for health care, SCI/D research and education, veterans’ benefits and rights, accessibility and the removal of architectural barriers, sports programs, and disability rights. PVA is the only congressionally chartered veterans organization dedicated solely to serving the needs of SCI/SCD veterans.
Reserve Officers Association
The Reserve Officers Association (ROA) founded in 1922, and chartered by Congress in 1950 provides a voice for creating government policy for the men and women who serve our Nation in the cause of freedom. Respected, vigorous, effective—ROA has a long list of policy accomplishments, and an ambitious long-range program for the coming decade and beyond. ROA provides a wide range of professional and personal benefits including, professional development workshops, mentoring programs, and a career center to meet the unique needs of its members. ROA works as a liaison between government entities, the media, and its members to keep reservists and their families apprised of important topics such as call-ups and legislative actions.
Retired Enlisted Association
The mission of the Retired Enlisted Association is to enhance the quality of life for uniformed services enlisted personnel, their families and survivors-including active components, Reserves, and National Guard, and all retirees; to stop the erosion of earned benefits through legislative efforts; to maintain esprit de corps, dedication and patriotism; and to continue our devotion and allegiance to God and Country.
Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors
Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS) is the 24/7 tragedy assistance resource for ANYONE who has suffered the loss of a military loved one, regardless of the relationship to the deceased or the circumstance of the death. TAPS provides immediate and long-term emotional help, hope, and healing to all who are grieving the death of a loved one in military service to America. TAPS meets its mission by providing peer-based emotional support, grief and trauma resources, casework assistance, and connections to community-based care.
Uniformed Services Disabled Retirees
The primary mission of the Uniformed Services Disabled Retirees is to restore the full retirement annuity earned by disabled retirees of the Uniformed Services. Since 1981 USDR has been fighting to protect the few remaining entitlements earned by, and promised to, military retirees and their families.
United Services Automobile Association
The United Services Automobile Association (USAA) is a diversified financial services group of companies which includes insurance and financial services to people and families that serve, or served, in the United States military. At the end of 2011, there were 8.8 million members. USAA was one of the pioneers of direct marketing and most of its business is conducted over the internet or telephone using employees instead of agents.
Veterans of Foreign Wars
The mission of the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) is to foster camaraderie among United States veterans of overseas conflicts; to serve our veterans, the military, and our communities; to advocate on behalf of all veterans. The VFW works to ensure that veterans are respected for their service, always receive their earned entitlements, and are recognized for the sacrifices they and their loved ones have made on behalf of this great county.