Undoubtedly every parent has wished for it: a safe, reliable Uber-like solution for transporting kids from point A to point B. South Euclid resident Charisma Curry is launching Parents in Motion to make that wish a reality.
“My kids are really active, and I constantly hear families complaining about not enough time in the day,” shares Curry. “People say that it’s like a second job for them to travel with their children. There is a really a need—I’m looking to fill that need for these families.”
Curry learned that firsthand in late 2016 when her car broke down and she had to use public transportation to drop her kids off at daycare before reporting to work. After being late for several days in a row, Curry lost her job at a nursing home. Rather than wallow, she set to work finding a solution.
“It was important for someone to identify the issue because it’s not just my own issue, but a universal one for a lot of families,” says Curry. “The reasons go on and on: just one car, no car, or not being able to afford transportation.”
The resulting brainchild is Parents in Motion, an app that allows parents to schedule rides for their kids. Co-founded by Curry and Chanel Williams, the app can be used in three ways—straightforward rideshare (in which parents can purchase a ride for their kids), ride exchange (in which parents can help each other out through reciprocity), and a special program to help low-income families take advantage of the service.
To address safety concerns, all drivers must pass a 17-point vetting system that includes a nationwide criminal search, sex offender check, first aid and CPR certification, social security name-and-address trace, motor vehicle report, and more. Drivers must also provide two active professional referrals that can vouch for their character.
Right now, Curry is hiring drivers to be part of the service, and 15 have made it past the pre-screening process so far. Her goal is to hire 50 people by mid-July spanning several residential areas throughout Greater Cleveland and Cuyahoga, Lake, and Geauga counties.
“I’m hoping to build a large network of safe drivers and really bring peace of mind to families,” says Curry. “I want families to know the extent we are going to for safety.”
In the three years Curry has been developing Parents in Motion, the stay-at-home mother of four has been hitting the local entrepreneurial circuit—taking part in hack-a-thons, pitch competitions, and getting involved at the Women’s Business Center. (Curry was asked to speak at the WBC’s In the Company of Women event in May.) Her business is currently based out of the StartMart coworking space downtown.
With a launch planned for mid-July, Curry and Williams are busy ramping up their efforts—and Curry can’t wait for Cleveland to see what Parents in Motion is all about: “As we continue to grow, we hope people will see the heart and soul of this project.”