Loving your DIGGS is often wrapped up in loving your family. And, if your family includes little kids, babysitting might be an issue for you.
Erin Beck understands the babysitting issues. She formed a babysitting co-op with some local moms, but soon realized that there were some larger issues that can make such groups ineffective. For example, how do you balance the babysitting books if some moms are busier than others?
Erin developed an ingenious web application that uses the power of the internet combined with real face to face relationships to form The Wana Family Network. It is based in Los Angeles, with a local group right here in the Crescenta Valley.
Listen in as we find out how Wana was built and how it works to build real, local, communities and creates free babysitting for the people involved.
Erin Beck developed an ingenious app that creates a Free BabySitting Co-op.
How do people get free babysitting from trusted people?
How did Erin get to this place?
She started out as a Space X engineer as a Mission Director (think Apollo 13, “Failure is not an option!”) for the Dragon Space Craft that resupplies the Internation Space Station.
She had her daughter and despite a super supportive environment at Space X, she wanted more time with her child.
She left to create a digital nomad lifestyle. But being a mom was SO consuming she did nothing about this for 14 months.
At that point she realized she needed to get out of the house now and again in order to start the business she wanted to create, but she didn’t have the money to hire childcare.
Occasional babysitting is $15/hr across the nation and that is not affordable for more than 50% of families with small children.
Even if we have friends and community there is a hesitation to ask for help with watching kids. Everyone seems so busy and happy with no babysitting needs.
Meeting new parents is almost like dating! So many considerations about the anticipated judgment of others- she had to screw up the courage to ask. When she DID finally ask another mom, it was like she had just been WAITING from someone to ask. She wanted babysitting sharing just as much as Erin did.
How does Wana work?
She moved the idea of a babysitting co-op to a web app findable online. It’s called Wana.
Find other families that share characteristics with you. You can ask to meet at the zoo, for example, as a low friction way to get to know other families. You can find out later if they are people you want to form a sit-swap relationship. You can also find community-based play groups.
What happens if you need more babysitting help than you can give back in return?
Wana uses a point system that allows you to “buy” points to give to families that are babysitting for you. Those families can give those points to others. You can either buy points or earn points- it’s like babysitting “currency”. In the future, there will be ways for babysitting heroes to trade these points in for actual goods and services!
That’s why she developed Wana.
Building a Community
Wana is more than just babysitting. It is building local communities of families, locally based.
Web App: http://WanaFam.ly