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VA Maryland Health Care System


Local Volunteer Gives Back to Veterans

Elizabeth "Tommy" Arnold 

Pictured is Elizabeth “Tommy” Arnold, a greeter at the Perry Point VA Medical Center’s Welcome Center, where visitors to the facility can gain directional assistance to patient care areas or administrative buildings, facility visitor guides or campus maps.

Everyone has reasons for why and where they choose to volunteer. Volunteering at the Perry Point Veterans Affairs (VA) Medical Center was an easy choice for Elizabeth “Tommy” Arnold, a resident of Edgewood, Md. “I wanted to pay tribute to my late husband and father, who both served proudly in the armed forces, and could think of no better way to do so than to give back to Veterans at my local VA medical center,” she said.

Arnold, at 91, is an active member of several local Veterans service organizations’ auxiliaries, and accompanies her fellow members to the Perry Point VA Medical Center every month to assist with recreational activities for hospitalized Veterans. However, she is most visible in her volunteer assignment as a greeter at the facility’s Welcome Center, where she volunteers four days per month. According to Susan Kern, program manager for Voluntary Service for the VA Maryland Health Care System, “Volunteer greeters at our Perry Point VA Medical Center’s Welcome Center, which is positioned in a building at the entrance to the facility, serve as a wonderful resource and guide to visitors who seek directional assistance to a specific building on the grounds of the sprawling 350-acre campus.”

Volunteers at the facility’s Welcome Center provide visitors with directional guides and campus maps. They can also call patient care or administrative areas, as needed.

“Volunteering at the Welcome Center has helped me gain a better understanding of the many VA services offered to hospitalized Veterans, as well as the campus layout,” said Arnold. She added, “I also like the fact that I may be the first person who greets a Veteran or his/her family member to the medical center and I gain personal satisfaction from helping them in some small way.”

To learn about becoming a volunteer greeter at the Welcome Center for the Perry Point VA Medical Center or about other volunteer opportunities, please contact the Voluntary Service office at 1-800-949-1003, ext. 1038.


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