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In the last 30 years, children's museums have become the fastest-growing cultural organization in the United States with an increasingly important place in the landscape of modern childhood.


As schools and homes become dominated by technology, and researchers deliver increasing evidence of the severe consequences of those technologies, these museums are now the protectors of play. 

Over the next 20 years, the first generation raised with what XX now calls a "phone-based childhood" will become parents. This shift will come at a time when we are armed with new research around: 1) the importance of play, 2) the importance of parent-led conversation in learning, and 3) the degree to which language exposure as a child shapes who we become as adults.   

We believe children's museums and their community partners such as libraries are where future parents will learn how to make play and conversation again the focus of childhood... and of life.  

We are a software company, yes. But we don't believe in technology for children or even for the same of building technology. We believe in a product for children's museums that meets adults where they are at (their phones) and provides a revolutionary, research-driven method of supporting the discovery that happens in a museum. 

Parents come to children's museums to be the best version of themselves. Our mission is to build a product that helps museums extend that sense of being our best selves as mothers and fathers even after we leave the museum, letting the museum deliver more value and ensuring their financial health for decades to come. 


Memby began as an academic thesis by researcher Sarah-Eva Marchese in the International Relations Department at the Univesity of St. Andrews in Scotland. There she coined the "Two-Tiered Metaphoric Peacebuilding Theory." The research asked a foundation question: Can we change who we are and how we relate to others (especially in conflict) simply by changing how we understand language? She was accepted to continue her research at the University of Cambridge, being a finalist as well for the prestigious Gates Cambridge Scholarship. 

Sarah-Eva believed that this question needed to be answered not in an academic setting but within a software company where it could do good, so she dropped out of the academic path and entered the startup world.

Inspired by the first florist in Mogadishu, Somalia, Sarah-Eva set up a flower company that used flowers to share the most vulnerable words and stories that build authentic relationships. Mohammed believed that flowers were uniquely able to help people communicate where words weren't enough, even in a country with 20 years of civil war and trauma. Especially there. When terrorists murdered him for these beliefs, our founder published his story in The Guardian.

We continued as a floral company for 4 years. The floral side perpetually consumed our resources and focus. We also discovered growing research on the power of language early in human development. Our founder, now a mother of 4 little girls, started to explore the application of her work earlier in the development of human relationships and self. 

When we were accepted into Techstars Chicago's 2023 Spring cohort, we had the opportunity to drop the floral part of our business. After a few small tests and pivots, we saw that the problem we were solving wasn't between children and parents. It was between parents and museums. 

As childhood and family life become more tech-enabled to the destruction of relationships and mental health, museums and libraries have served as the social and cultural anchor against this wave focusing on play. But research repeatedly shows that parents are critical, especially in their use of language in the home.  They are facing the question we originally set out to solve: can we solve the education and health crisis in children simply by changing how parents understand language the way the "scaffold" learning in the home? We believe we can, and we believe the findings support that this same powerful tool can be used with children in refugee camps and post-conflict regions around the world.   


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