Meet Chantra Chet. She came to this country in 1982 as a refugee from the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia. She did not speak a word of English. On Mar 23, 1983 she was hired at the Dry Cleaner at 2929 S Glebe Rd in Arlington, VA (Now 1st VA Cleaners). She made $3.50 an hour and took ESL courses in the back. After 14 years, she had earned enough to buy the store! In 2017, Chantra spent her life savings on another location that houses all of the dry cleaning equipment. She has been a fixture in our community for more than 35 years. She and her staff do phenomenal work, and she is a delight to chat with.
Unfortunately, her business has been decimated by the Coravirus Shutdown. When I went in last week to pick up some clothes, she had tears in her eyes when she told me that she can only afford to clean clothes one day a week. In fact, she could not even afford to turn on the electricity or air conditioning. Not only did her landlord not give her a break, but they actually RAISED her monthly rent to over $9,000. With virtually no business coming in, she has no idea how she is going to come up with rent money.
I have been moved by her story and touched by her friendship. I know many of you have had to make sacrifices over the past few months, but I am asking you to please help if you can. I am hoping that the community can come together and cover her rent for a month or 2. If you can't donate, then please share this with people you know. If you are in the Arlington area, then please consider bringing her some business!
- Kristen Boehme
- Pete Veglak
- Sean Suggs
- Eric Stringfellow
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