LaShonda Russell, owner of Gal Gone Green — a cleaning service that operates out of Broadway — says she adopted a “green” style of cleaning to escape the dangerous chemicals often involved. (Photo by Aimee George)
As spring approaches, the air warms, flowers begin to bloom and the grass will once again come alive. But that won’t be the only thing turning green — Gal Gone Green cleaning service, out of Broadway, will also gear up for a new season of spring cleaning.
“When I first opened, it was just a small idea, just trying to get out from behind the desk,” says LaShonda Russell.
“The original idea was just to have a couple houses. I knew I liked to clean, I like to stay on the go and I knew that I could not be around dangerous chemicals all the time,” says Russell. “So, I started researching the cleaning styles in the area and I wanted to be something different. The development began from there, along with a lot of prayers about it”
Russell explains that this “different” cleaning style is not only great for bringing in new clients, but for safety, which aligns perfectly with her values.
“I’m big into nature, and the whole process has truly been a gift from God.”
The “green” style of cleaning gave this gal the edge she needed to sell her business.
Russell started out solo, and just after a few months, needed additional help. Russell hired her first employee — Kerry Passarelli, 36, of Broadway.
Russell now has five employees and 45 to 50 businesses and residents as customers.
Passarelli, a nurse, decided to venture into the green cleaning industry after having her son and going back to school, and has worked with Russell for a year and a half.
“We provide service from Staunton to Front Royal and our goal is to get up to Northern Virginia,” says Russell.
Russell has researched and experimented with different green cleaning products and has found her favorites. “Method is probably my favorite, along with Ms. Meyers, and sometimes we use only water or water and vinegar.”
Kristen Kennedy, a homeowner in Harrisonburg, has been using Gal Gone Green’s services for two years. “[Russell] came into my life right after I had my son. I didn’t want to worry about him crawling on the floor or getting into bleach or getting harsh chemicals into his system. It’s nice to be around someone who takes pride in what she does. She takes care of my house and she obviously cares about her work.”
All of the products and tools used to clean are reusable. “We never use paper towels. We use micro-fiber cloths and mops and a Hepa-filtration bagless vacuum that controls allergens from going back into the air and we never have to buy bags,” says Russell.
“Broadway and Harrisonburg are so eco-friendly and the products we have suit those who need our services,” says Passarelli.
One of Russell’s favorite natural cleaning techniques is to mix vinegar and baking soda into a paste when cleaning a glass top stove — even if caked with food.
Let the paste sit on the stove top before trying to wipe clean, “It does amazing things,” she says.
Gal Gone Green will modify their cleaning techniques or products to suit each and every client and their homes.
“Once you get to know your clients, you will know what works best with the floors and their houses. We cater to each client’s needs to make them happy,” says Passarelli.
For more information, contact LaShonda Russell at (540) 578-0782 or visit her Gal Gone Green Facebook page.
Contact Aimee George at (540) 574-6292 or firstname.lastname@example.org.