The National Society Colonial Dames 17th Century (CD17) and the Central Arkansas Veterans Healthcare System (CAVHS) honored two volunteers for their commitment.

Since 1999, Peggy Vandenberg and Sally Johnson of CD17 have volunteered at the Little Rock VA Medical Center. Regularly scheduled, the duo make the coffee and serve cookies to ensure the patients and their families are comfortable and were made welcome, according to a news release.

Johnson has been volunteering for 32 years and Vandenberg for 22 years, representing thousands of hours.

In addition to their on-site volunteer hours, they collect items needed by veterans and deliver to CAVHS. As volunteer representatives for CD17, they attend quarterly meetings held by the VA Volunteers Services (VAVS) chief and report back to CD17 current needs and projects.

VAVS is following a revised process in assigning volunteers and continue accepting needed donations during the ongoing response to the coronavirus pandemic.

“Although the VA is extremely grateful to volunteers such as Johnson and Vandenberg, it is only supporting volunteers in administrative assignments with limited visitation with patients,” according to the release.

“These volunteers have meaningful conversations with veterans and their caregivers; conversing with veterans and families while serving a hot cup of ‘joe.’ The two have made a tremendous impact on many veterans’ lives while volunteering at CAVHS and through regular community service. Volunteering for the veterans and their families have blessed these two heroes with the opportunity who just want to ‘give back’,” according to the release.

Both said they enjoy serving and visiting in the waiting areas, not only the veterans, but also the young children who ask for more cookies the women supply. After serving in the public area, they visit the hospitalized patients and offer coffee, cookies and encouragement.

Both women recommend that when pandemic restrictions are lifted all consider volunteering, in some capacity, for veterans, even if just one hour a month.

For information on how to serve, contact CAVHS VAVS at or call 501-257-3293.