Uber for kids?
It could be a thing in Miami soon, with the debut of a ride-sharing service that's a new spin on the after-school carpool.
The company is called Urban Village Kids and the idea is to reduce headaches for parents who need to get kids to and from activities and appointments. Using an app, parents order rides for their kids by 7 p.m. the night before the rideshare needs to take place. At the appointed time, a driver takes the kids and maybe others where they need to go.
Company CEO Candice Saffer was in the audience at a recent Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce panel on transportation innovations. She spent 14 years as a single mom shuttling her three kids through South Florida traffic and says Urban Village Kids comes from the idea, “It takes a village to raise a child.”
"What we’re doing is we’re having a community base," she said. Most of the drivers will be caregivers, like nurses, teachers or other parents. They’ll be insured to drive minors, undergo background checks and adhere to a strict no-phones-while-driving policy that the company monitors.
"We’re focusing on security, which is putting in cameras in the car, GPS tracking and making sure that every parent has full knowledge and transparency during every second of the ride," Saffer said. In the long run, she added, the service could become particularly efficient if nurses drove kids who need routine outpatient hospital treatment to their appointments or if teachers drove students to school.
Urban Village Kids is scheduled to roll out this fall for kids age 8 and older.