AMVETS™ Department of California Service Foundation is a California tax-exempt 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. The Foundation is the fundraising arm of AMVETS Department of California. AMVETS is a veteran’s service organization that is different from other veteran organizations because of its open-door policy. Eligibility for membership is not limited to combat or war veterans. We are inclusive of veterans from wars of all eras who received an honorable discharge, as well as current service members, the National Guard, and Reserves. AMVETS has 10,000 members statewide. As veterans, we pledge to ensure that your donations to AMVETS Thrift Stores or your cash donations are utilized in ways that directly serve veterans.
A major source of Foundation revenues comes from the sale of donated goods at the AMVETS™ Thrift Stores. The Foundation uses the funds for numerous AMVETS™ Department of California service programs that directly benefit Veterans and their families throughout the State of California. Click here to view our service programs
AMVETS™ Service Officers are accredited by the Veterans Administration to represent Veterans and their dependents in processing their claims for benefits before the VA. AMVETS Service Officers are in VA Hospitals, VA Regional Centers and other VA facilities in California and Nevada. For decades our AMVETS™ Service Officers have earned a well-deserved reputation in the Veteran community by assisting deserving California Veterans and their families. AMVETS Service Officers are “Committed to Serve… Those Who Served ®”. AMVETS Service Officers recovered nearly $70,000,000 in benefits for Veterans with service-related disabilities.
AMVETS™ of California is dedicated to serving the needs of the brave men and women who have answered the call of this great nation and who deserve nothing less.
The history of American Veterans – AMVETS
1943 AMVETS was founded August during WWII with victory still two years away. The new Veteran organization, later to be known Americans of World War II, had its beginning. Formed in Washington D.C., two independent clubs, one on the campus of George Washington University, the other a group of Veterans employed by the government, joined together to sponsor a serviceman’s party.
September 1944, other veterans’ clubs organized in California, Florida, Louisiana, New York, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, Texas and Tennessee were formed.
December 1944 leaders met in Kansas City, MO, to link the service clubs under one national organization. The word AMVETS was later coined by newspaper headline writers, and soon became the organization’s official name.
October 1945, two months after the end of WWII, the first national convention was held in Chicago.
1946, AMVETS petitioned Congress for a federal charter.
July 23, 1947, President Harry S. Truman signed the AMVETS charter.
September 14, 1966 President Lyndon B. Johnson signed a bill redefining the eligibility dates for AMVETS membership, stating “Any person who served in the Armed Forces of the United States of America, or any American citizen, who served in the armed forces of an allied nation of the United States at any time after September 16, 1940, and on or before the date of cessation of hostilities as determined by the government of the United States is eligible for regular membership in AMVETS, provided such service when terminated by discharge or release from active duty be by honorable discharge or separation.”
May 31, 1984 President Ronald Reagan signed Public Law 98304 which amended the AMVETS congressional charter to open membership to all members of the military who served honorably and actively after May 15, 1975. AMVETS is now the only congressionally chartered Veterans organization that recognizes the sacrifices of those Veterans and service personnel by extending membership eligibility.