VanGo, a ridesharing startup aimed at helping working moms by transporting their kids, will enter the Dallas market this month with a cadre of drivers already in place.
The VanGo app was launched about a year ago by founder Marta Jamrozik, a Connecticut resident who formerly worked for a Fortune 500 company. It recently entered the Houston market and now plans to expand its Texas footprint even further.
“We’ll be launching in Dallas this month and are starting with just the Dallas area first,” Jamrozik told Dallas Innovates. “We’ll plan to expand to the Dallas-Fort Worth metro area throughout this school year.”
The app is a way for working moms to know their kids can get where they need to go with a driver that VanGo has put through a heavy vetting process. The startup says that 85 percent of its drivers are moms themselves, while many others are nannies, teachers, and babysitters. VanGo offers services mostly for preteens and teenagers ages eight through 18, and gives rides to all types of activities—to and from school, after-school tutoring, sports practices and events, and even to a friend’s house.
Jamrozik said she started VanGo because her mother worked full time, and did most of the household and childcare work in the house. That’s what’s happening with many women now—the unique challenge of a career without much of a support system.
“Our mission is to support working moms,” Jamrozik said. “I started VanGo because working moms have the challenge of balancing a full-time career while also managing a household—with no support system to lean on. I wanted to build that support system for working moms, starting with children’s transportation.”
All drivers must have at least three years of childcare experience and are interviewed by the startup. VanGo’s candidates are fingerprinted and undergo a background check and driving record check.
The company requires all vehicles used by its drivers to be inspected by a mechanic. The app’s GPS tracking feature allows a parent to follow along digitally as the ride progresses—allowing parents to know where their child is at any moment.
While VanGo’s drivers are mostly female, the startup said men are welcome to sign up to become drivers.
Before coming to Dallas and Houston, VanGo started in a large suburb of New York City and then expanded to Phoenix.
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