Kent woman cleans up cancer, one home at a time
By MICHELLE CONERLY
Kent Reporter Reporter, Schools, Education, Sports
March 7, 2013 · Updated 2:09 PM
Tiffany Janibagian decided that if she were to start her own business, she'd better do her research.
Scanning websites, anyone could have missed the small, pink ribbon in the corner of the screen – but not Janibagian.
That small symbol made a big difference to a woman who lost her grandmother to cancer almost 15 years ago. Now, running her own business out of her home on the East Hill of Kent, Janibagian believes wherever she is, her grandmother is proud of her efforts to continue the battle against cancer one clean house at a time.
Janibagian and husband Jonathon – Kent-Meridian graduates – launched Tip Top Cleaning Solutions, a residential and commercial cleaning company, last December, and joined Cleaning for a Reason, a nonprofit organization geared toward helping women fighting cancer.
After witnessing how cancer affected the daily life of her grandmother, Janibagian vowed to help out others suffering from the same disease.
"You take for granted all the little things," Janibagian said. "(My grandmother) was always on top of cleaning the house, (but) then she couldn't anymore because she was tired or sick."
Living with her grandmother in Panama while her mother served in the U.S. Army, Janibagian would help tidy the house, sweeping behind her grandmother with the toy broom she was given.
"For me being an adult, getting the responsibility of cleaning was my biggest joy," Janibagian said.
So when she revisited the idea of starting her own business, a cleaning company was her natural first choice.
A mother of three, Janibagian knows firsthand how important it is to keep a clean home. Add to that three asthmatics in the family, and she's got her hands full when it comes to keeping things spick and span while still putting her family's health first.
That's one of the reasons why Janibagian made the move to only use "green" cleaners in her home and business. Instead of Friday's smelling like bleach, there's now a hint of Moroccan Night in the air, a cleaning product Janibagian makes in her home from "certified green" essential oils. And although she's never travelled to Morocco, for business purposes, she felt that "Kent Nighttime" didn't have as nice of a ring to it, she joked.
The other reason Janibagian abandoned commercial cleaning products was the cancer causing agents she found them to have after doing research online.
"If I'm going to go to these women's homes and clean, I want to have something that really doesn't add any more chemicals into the mix," Janibagian said.
These are also the types of topics Janibagian writes about in her blog on the company's website. From what's in conventional cleaners to the advantages to keeping a clean home, Janibagian hopes to empower consumers and customers when it comes to tidying up through her blog.
"We're just trying to get the word out there that cleaning is good," she said.
So good, in fact, that Janibagian's face lit up every time she spoke of getting her hands dirty. This enthusiasm shone through when she discussed joining Cleaning for a Reason as well.
"If I can make another person happy and give them back their day in some form or fashion or just help them to relax where they don't have to worry about this (disease) and know that their house is taken care of, you better believe I'll do it," she said.
Janibagian offers free house cleaning to two women per month up to four months while they focus on getting better and fighting the disease. And with each customer, Janibagian dedicates her job-well-done to her grandmother.
"I still miss her everyday," she said. "(But) really and truly, it's in her name."Contact Kent Reporter Reporter, Schools, Education, Sports Michelle Conerly at firstname.lastname@example.org or 253-872-6600, ext. 5056.