The Royal Canadian Legion originated in several small associations of veterans that banded together throughout Canada during the First World War. In 1926 the groups amalgamated to form the Canadian Legion of the British Empire Service League. The Legion grew rapidly in the 1930s and 1940s and concentrated on integrating veterans into civilian life. Women have taken an active role in the organization. In 1960 the name was changed to Royal Canadian Legion. In 1984 RCL hired Marcel Dirk to coordinate a national oral history project with long-time members. Volunteers were chosen in each region of the country. They received training and interviewed members about person backgrounds, career accomplishments, their military service and work for the Legion.