Responding to a New Need

Maria Ciesla Interview - Post-War Donations
Listen here as Maria Ciesla, Legion member since the 1960s and President from 1988-1989, discusses the expansion of the Legion's charitable efforts after WWII.

Though decreasing in membership after the war, the Legion continued to thrive by widening the scope of its efforts beyond war relief. While still working to assist Poles and Polish refugees, the Legion began to also focus on promoting Polish culture and heritage in the United States.

The organization’s constitution was amended in 1963 to represent this shift. The purpose was now listed as:

  1. To raise funds for the relief of the needy Poles and Institutions inside Poland and Polish Refugees.
  2. To support local and national fund drives and promote cultural endeavors.
  3. To co-operate with all other Polish organizations whose goals and ideals coincide with ours.
  4. To organize young women for the purpose of promoting their interest in humanitarian and cultural work. To prepare them for active participation in organization and social activities, which will include upholding Polish Customs and Traditions.

The following section of the exhibit focuses on this multi-faceted mission of the Legion in two parts: Assistance to Poland and Promoting Polish Heritage.