PORTAGE, Mich. — The staff at Jeannie Cleaning are used to scrubbing homes and offices clean from top to bottom. However on Tuesday they were joined by a handful of volunteers who walked out of the office on Romence Road with a bag full of cleaning materials for a special reason.
“We clean for cancer patients on a regular basis. We average about one cancer patient that we clean for per week,” said owner Jeannie Henderson during an interview with FOX 17. “But we decided to have a special day in October in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month to clean as many patients as we could in one day.”
That special day was Tuesday. They called it Clean for Cancer Day and teams drove to different cancer patients' homes in Kalamazoo County to clean it for a few hours.
“We really provide really heavy duty cleaning in the kitchen and bathrooms because those are the areas that are the most lived-in in the home,” Henderson said. “But then we dust throughout the entire house and we clean all of the floors.”
Team members vacuumed and mopped all of the floors too. Rhiannon Carpenter was on of them. She got on her hands and knees to clean to the tubs, toilet bowls, toilet lids and floors in both bathrooms in a home in Scotts.
“I think that you know we all have the responsibility to support and show kindness to one another,” Carpenter said. “And that we have the opportunity to affect our community in this way is just really incredible. We’re all all in for it.”
She said they were happy to do it. Carpenter was with two other women in that home cleaning almost every room in the house.
“So now Cleaning For a Reason has grown to over 1200 cleaning businesses across the U.S. and Canada,” Henderson said. “There are people cleaning for cancer patients all over the United States today.”
At Jeannie’s Cleaning, they clean cancer patient’s home regularly she said. They offer the first two cleanings for free, she said, and all subsequent cleanings are offered at a discounted rate while the patient undergoes treatment.
“It’s just one less thing that they have to worry about. It’s something we all put at the bottom of our list most of the time," Carpenter said. "They can spend time taking care of their own health or the health of their loved ones instead of worrying about cleaning the sink and the toilet.”
Henderson said the patients and their families are grateful. Once they start treatment, they become exhausted because it’s hard on their bodies.
“When you’re sitting at home and recovering from chemotherapy all you can do is sit and look at the cobwebs in your corner and the dust that’s building up on your shelves,” Henderson said. “And it’s so frustrating.”
However Jeannie Cleaning is happy to ease their frustrations, she said. And she hopes other businesses in the area will join Clean For a Reason so they can serve more families next year.
“It’s a great way to give back to our community,” Henderson said. “So I just want to encourage people today if you are in the cleaning business go to CleaningForAReason.org and sign up to be a partner business.”