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Mom2Mom, solidarity among babysitting mothers
Neus Navarro / Translation Neil Stokes Barcelona 19|04|2017
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After finding it difficult to balance family and work, a Catalan entrepreneur created a free platform connecting mothers to act as nannies for other mums
Businesswoman Yolanda Descartín, creator of Mom2Mom . Ceded
LES CLAUS

Descartín: "I see it clearly as place where mothers can find support, affection and respect"

The platform, which also has an app, is growing thanks to diffusion on social networks

The initial investment was 10,000 euros, the second 80,000 thanks to business angels

Sometimes, a difficult experience can help you to see the light. You don’t believe there is a solution and, suddenly, it comes in a flash. Yolanda Descartín went through such a process: mother of two children close in age, she was living in Miami (United States) where her husband and she were working in a company creating websites. Without any help to balance family and work, this Catalan woman fell into a depression that made the family decide to return home. This is the origin of the Mom2Mom platform, which connects mothers with the same problems –difficulties in finding a babysitter, a lack of funds to pay for (more) extracurricular classes... so that they can help each other out. Totally free, the platform geolocates the mums, puts them in touch and they decide whether to exchange work for hours or remuneration.

She herself was the first guinea pig, when she took in her children’s classmates during holiday periods when their parents were not available to look after them. "It was so successful that I did it for four years. I fed them, organised games... Some parents gave me money, others nothing... In truth I asked for nothing in return, but I was surprised that there was no online platform with my vision of helping others," says Descartín.

With the aim of putting this right, she invested 10,000 euros of her own money and another 80,000 euros from business angels, "which was relatively easy after what I had seen from other entrepreneurs. I had such a clear idea, and it was so necessary, that they saw the usefulness of it and so it was relatively easy. In five months I got the funds I needed." In May 2016, the platform went into operation, which also has an app version on Google Play and that will soon be available for Apple devices.

Today for me, tomorrow for you
Even though for the moment Mom2Mom (@MadresCanguros) has no turnover, it already has a staff of eight people heavily involved with using social networks, as it is through this channel that it has grown to around 4,200 registered mothers today. It is present in all of Spain, the United States and the United Kingdom.



As it is a collaborative economy service, Descartín insists that the platform will always be free and that revenue must come from advertising, a resource it already uses through organising contests and draws among its users. "We are very, very clear about it always being a free community for all mothers. We will always offer the draws for products and services, because I am very aware that it has to be a place where mothers can find each other and, above all, find support, affection and respect," says the entrepreneur.

In fact, it is a platform exclusively for mothers with children, a condition that the platform’s team check closely. "There are three people devoted to reviewing each profile, getting in contact with everyone who registers with the platform and if we find any irregularity, their registration is cancelled immediately. Thus she insists that "the user profiles you always see on Mom2Mom are mothers with children; it is very, very controlled."

Personal satisfaction
"In the Bebès&Mamàs fair in Madrid a married couple with children came up to me and it was hugely satisfying because I realised that they merely wanted to congratulate me because we had helped them find a nanny close to the hotel they were staying in, to look after their children for a few hours in the room. That makes the whole team immensely happy," admits Yolanda Descartín.

From her words it seems as if the success of the platform has a (positive) personal affect on her, which comes from her heavy involvement in the project. "I feel so happy when I help because I was a mum with depression and now I feel immensely happy to see this grow, that associations for disabled children want to work with us, and that even universities in New York and Miami have shown an interest in Mom2Mom."
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