Video

Smartphone app Social.Mom stops in Thunder Bay, Ont.

A Quebec mom with an entrepreneurial spirit stopped in Thunder Bay, Ont., Wednesday with her family to promote her smartphone app, which aims to help with the loneliness she says can be common among young mothers.

Developers driving from coast to coast to promote the app, which aims to connect moms to meet in real life

Audrey Poulin has developed an app, Social.Mom, that aims to connect new mothers in a given area to promote meet-ups and making connections. (Matt Prokopchuk / CBC)

A Quebec mom with an entrepreneurial spirit stopped in Thunder Bay, Ont., Wednesday with her family to promote her smartphone app, which aims to help with the loneliness she says can be common among young mothers.

Audrey Poulin, her husband David Proulx and their two children, Timothée and Abigaël, were in Thunder Bay to promote Social.Mom as part of a cross-country tour that's taking them through 15 cities, from Halifax to Vancouver.

"The idea came from my maternity leave," Poulin said. "I felt a little alone and I wanted to connect with other moms, other women that have kids the same age as mine."

"I was sure there were moms around, but I was too shy to go knock at their doors and find them, so I thought at that moment of an app."

Poulin compared the app, somewhat, to Tinder in that it finds other users — in this case young mothers — and facilitates a connection. That connection, Poulin said, is intended to go beyond the social media world and into real life.

"It was go great to connect with [other moms], to talk about real stuff, to share what we struggle with," she said. "It's a relief to share and know that we're not alone."

Audrey Poulin and David Proulx are driving with their children cross-country to promote Poulin's new app. (Matt Prokopchuk / CBC)

That sense of loneliness can be pervasive, even among the generation plugged in to many social media platforms; in fact, David Proulx said he believes that connectivity may exacerbate it.

"If I can summarize all the literature that we read, the millennial moms, they are connected but lonely," he said. "When you look at Facebook, it doesn't look like that, it looks like everybody's having a perfect life."

The cross-country tour is being done to raise awareness of the app, and to get people in the cities they stop in to sign up.

"We share the value of talking with other moms in real [life]," Poulin said.

The "mom mobile" stopped in Thunder Bay, Ont., on Wednesday. (Matt Prokopchuk / CBC)