By Ukee Washington

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The last thing a cancer patient needs is housework to do. But many do it without help, until now. Dozens of cancer patients are getting a break at home thanks to some businesses who step up to clean up.

Last August, Karen Hegedus, a wife and mother of two, was diagnosed an aggressive form of breast cancer.

“I was a very go-go-go person,” Hegedus said. “I was coaching volleyball. I was working full time.”

She has had chemotherapy and a lumpectomy and is starting radiation. The treatments often sap her energy.

“Just little chores: cooking, folding laundry, cleaning. It’s just really hard, really hard to do.”

These house cleaners are here to help. They’re donating their time and cleaning supplies to Karen. It’s all coordinated through a non-profit called Cleaning for a Reason. House cleaning companies give cancer patients four free house cleanings during their treatments.

“Because people like Karen need somebody to come into their house,” said Kathleen Albertson. “I have children myself and I don’t have cancer, and I can’t keep my house clean.”

Albertson and her employer, Professional Building Services, help sponsor 13 cleaning companies around their area, paying for their supplies. They’ve helped 81 patients since 2010.

Donna’s Cleaning Service Inc. of Limerick signed up right away and has already helped eight patients. Owner Donna Mazzerle said, “Most people still have children that they have to deal with and other things in their lives. The last thing they need to worry about is cleaning.”

These women bring a shine and a smile.

“I would just like to thank them for coming in and doing this for me,” said Hegedus.

Whether you have a cleaning business and would like to help, or you know a cancer patient who could use a hand, you can find out about Cleaning for a Reason at

Ukee Washington