USO History

Just prior to the onset of America’s involvement in World War II in 1941, President Franklin D. Roosevelt sought to unite several service associations into one organization to lift the morale of our military and nourish support on the home front. Those entities – the Salvation Army, Young Men’s Christian Association, Young Women’s Christian Association, National Catholic Community Services, National Travelers Aid Association and the National Jewish Welfare Board - became the United Service Organizations or, the USO. These organizations are now represented in the six stars on the USO logo.

The USO has continued to support our nation’s military and their families for over seven decades. Today’s service members need the care, comfort, connection and support that can only be provided by an organization that is with them at every point of their military journey, no matter where or under what conditions they serve. The USO is continuously adapting to the needs of our men and women in uniform and their families so they can focus on their important mission.

The USO remains dedicated to expanding access to USO centers and programs around the world, increasing annual service connections and boosting transition services for our service members and their families throughout their time of duty. With more than 230 physical USO locations around the world, the USO has both the reach and the capability to provide crucial programs and services to the entire military community. In every corner of the world, our service members will know that the USO is always by their side.