When we think about the patients who are receiving cancer treatments, we often neglect to consider how many these patients’ day to day tasks suddenly become too exhausting or too costly to complete. Debbi Sardone, the president and founder of Cleaning For A Reason, was exposed to this harsh reality years ago over a conversation with a prospective client for her former cleaning service, Buckets & Bows Maid Service.
During this conversation, Sardone’s prospective client expressed a need for help to maintain her home but admitted that due to her cancer treatments, she was unable to afford Sardone’s cleaning services.
After this experience, Sardone decided that she never wanted to be in another situation where a woman undergoing cancer treatment would be turned away from her business. In 2005, Sardone took her first steps toward making a change by sharing her story at a national cleaning industry convention with other maid services. She explained to her fellow maid services women undergoing the physical, emotional, and financial struggles of cancer treatment were the people who needed access to professional housecleaning services the most. After hearing about Sardone’s experience, many maid service owners expressed their interest in supporting Sardone and her desire to help women undergoing cancer treatments.
After gaining the support of other maid services nationwide, Sardone returned home and registered Cleaning for A Reason as a nonprofit organization. Cleaning For A Reason serves all the United States and Canada and seeks to provide free house cleaning to women undergoing treatment for any type of cancer. Since 2006, the organization has recruited over 1,200 maid services who have agreed to donate free housecleaning to cancer patients and these partners have helped close to 20,000 women.
Cleaning For A Reason gets about 1,400 requests for service every month. The organization works with various companies throughout the nation and Canada that provide cancer patients with one free cleaning a month for four months. The businesses that work with Cleaning For A Reason must be insured and conduct background checks on their workers. These businesses agree not to charge the women they are helping for the services being provided but they do agree to pay their employees for the work.
Nothing sums up Cleaning For A Reason’s mission better than this statement from its website: “Our goal is to let these brave and strong women focus on their health and treatment while we focus on, and take away the worry and work of, cleaning their homes– free of charge.”
Cover image courtesy of Shutterstock.