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The overarching mission of the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary is to contribute to the safety and security of our citizens, ports, waterways and coastal regions. We will balance our missions of Recreational Boating Safety and Coast Guard Support with Maritime Homeland Security and other challenges that emerge as a result of our growing understanding of changes required in the post-9/11 era.
The United States Coast Guard Auxiliary is the civilian component of Coast Guard Forces. Founded in 1939 by an Act of Congress as the US Coast Guard Reserves and re-designated the Auxiliary in 1941. The 31,000 volunteer members (men and women) donate thousands of hours in support of Coast Guard missions.
The Coast Guard does more than just Search and Rescue, and with the exception of direct law enforcement and military action, the Auxiliary is there, side by side, working with regular and reserve Coast Guard units, every step of the way. We're found in every part of the United States, not just where Recreational Boating is found. Here's some more information, written by a retired Chief Petty Officer, now a member of the Auxiliary.
The National Organization is broken down along the lines of the Coast Guard Districts (some districts are further sub-divided for ease of administration). Districts are then sub-divided into Divisions, with these units further sub-divided into Flotilla's. The Flotilla is the mainstay of the Auxiliary, and every member must belong to a Flotilla.