Savvy Frugality is a big proponent of service to the community. My personal mantra is to give "time or money" back to the community. I have volunteered for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, which funds research to find a cure for diabetes. I also make regular donations to the Salvation Army, which does a great job of helping low-income people in the community.

I am also a military veteran, and I happened to have served during a time which qualifies me for membership to the American Legion. So, exactly 20 years after leaving the military, I have finally joined. I knew that the American Legion has always done great work on behalf of U.S. military veterans. The American Legion helped the current G.I. Bill become reality. The G.I. Bill has helped education millions of military service members and veterans. The American Legion was also a big proponent of the government lending aid and giving treatment to military veterans who had been exposed to Agent Orange during the Vietnam War.

After filling out an online form and paying my $25 membership dues, I received a membership packet in the mail, which informed me of the benefits of being a member of the American Legions. What do I get for my $25? It includes:

1. A one-year subscription to the American Legion's magazine.
2. Group rates on health, life and dental insurance.
3. Travel discounts for hotels, air fare and car rentals.
4. Discounts for eyeglasses.
5. Discounts on the purchase of a new computer from Dell.
6. Discounts on prescription drugs from CVS.
7. Access to American Legion certificates of deposit and money market savings accounts.
8. Discounts on moving and relocation services.
9. Free cell phone and discount wireless service.

That's not bad for $25 a year! I didn't retire from the military, so I'm not eligible for many military benefits, but my membership in a service organization like the American Legion is a way for me to gain something for my service, and help support other military veterans and service members.

You don't have to be a military service member to join some type of service organization. Look into giving back to your community by joining an organization such as Kiwanis, Rotary, Lions Club, Elk, Moose, Eagles or similar groups. Some of them not only offer a chance to serve your community and meet new people, they also include a few perks just for being a member.


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