By Everett Bishop
NORTH HAVEN – Running a business centered on doing errands for others wasn’t always what Michele Charm of North Haven envisioned herself doing.
Charm had spent 27 years working as a teacher in Hartford, “teaching everything but first and fourth grade.” She chose the field because she was inspired by her parents, who were both teachers. Eventually, she “burned out” and decided to retire from education.
What came next was Errands By Michele.
“It wasn’t really an errand business to begin with. It was pet sitting,” said Charm. “Then my sister said ‘People are busy, so maybe you should do an errand business.’”
From there, Charm said her sister created the posters and website for Errands by Michele. Charm’s sister, Deborah Pellechia, was a marketing major in college and also works in IT services in the healthcare field.
“I think it’s fun. I thought it was fun to get her website going,” said Pellechia. “I think I was really helping her solidify her plan.”
Charm also offers house sitting, transportation and shopping. Charm says most of the work she does is for senior citizens and she offers senior discounts.
One of her frequent clients needed help going grocery shopping and called Charm every two weeks for assistance.
“She couldn’t see anything so I was basically her eyes,” Charm said. “She used me as a guide so she could get groceries. I think that was my most rewarding experience.”
Charm also volunteers at several organizations, including the local Masonic Lodge and the Hamden Senior Center.
“She’s always been active in her community,” Pellechia said. “I think that my sister has a really caring heart and it comes out in everything she does.”
Charm said her favorite job remains pet sitting. Though she loves dogs, she is partial to cats.
“We don’t have kids, so our cats are our kids,” said Charm while showing off pictures of her two cats – Sushi, 7, and Pookie, 5. “I love all animals and I wish I could have more but Sushi’s a handful.”