Dry Cleaners Offer Free Services For Unemployed


This story may be an oldie, relatively speaking, but it's still a goodie -- and a viral one at that! Dry cleaners around the country are offering their services at no cost to unemployed customers who need their suit cleaned for an interview. It all began at Upper East Side dry cleaner First Professional Cleaners. A handwritten sign in their window reads, "If you are unemployed and need an outfit clean for an interview, we will clean it for free." According to the Daily News, it's owner Carlos Vasquez's way of giving a helping hand. "It's just something I do to give back to the community," explains Vasquez. "It's to thank them for the support that I get around here, for letting my business keep going by bringing me their clothes." And he's not alone.

High Point-based "A Cleaner World" cleaners made a similar announcement less than two weeks ago. ABC News' local affiliate in Durham reports that for unemployed job seekers, A Cleaner World "will clean a suit or a blazer and slacks, plus two shirts per week. Women can get a suit and two shirts or blouses or two regular dresses per week."

And Elite Cleaners in Minneapolis has also generously followed suit. Owner Don Chapman has donated his services to 2000 unemployed -- an offer he estimates will cost him $32,000.

Difficult times have been known to bring communities together as people lean on one another for support. In this recession, there's no shortage of communities around the country that have rallied around a struggling neighbor, or reached out a helping hand to those around them. We know there are more stories like these and HuffPost wants to highlight them. If you read or hear about an act of kindness in your community, email us the story at goodnews@huffingtonpost.com.

These vignettes are a much needed counterpoint to the doom and gloom surrounding the economy; let's help change the conversation -- we can't do it without you.

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