As I mentioned in my last entry, some people have messaged me to tell me I have offended them. I mean no harm! I simply want families to know that daycare, traditional babysitters or Nanny services are not the end of the line. You may find your family is a great match for au pair childcare.
That being said, au pair childcare may not be for every family. Some families cannot get over the idea of having a virtual stranger come to live with you for a year or more. I understand that. I am a very private person who values my home as my sanctuary. I can understand what a struggle it may be for some families to invite someone from another country to come and share your home.
However, if your family is open to new experiences, people and traditions, you might just love au pair childcare. If your family values learning about other cultures or countries, what a great option for you! If your family needs a caregiver who can become a member of the family, maybe a new aunt or uncle or friend-for-life, au pair childcare could work for you! Families who desire to teach their children a level of tolerance, acceptance, and even love that is unheard of in other childcare situations, au pair childcare might be your next choice!
With a Nanny or daycare, your family may not get the drop-anything-in-a-minute-to-help flexibility that is inherent in the live-in relationship you will develop with your au pair. You are limited by the DOS regulations, though, keeping under 10 hours per day and 45 hours per week, and one-and-a-half days off weekly. Within those limits, you have the flexibility to change your au pair’s schedule to fit your family’s ever-changing needs.
Cultural exchange and exposure are the most obvious benefits of au pair childcare, but I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the value of this benefit. Daycare centers may offer cultural lessons or even bi-lingual caregivers, but living with a native-speaker and sharing lessons from his or her country is unequaled by what any daycare can offer. Babysitters are limited to what there may be in your area or what is on television as far as cultural experiences. Your au pair can bring a language, culture and country to life, right in your home! When you host an au pair, you can choose from over 50 countries, and choose another country next year!
I want your family to learn about the options available to you. In Rhode Island, we have a growing group of Host Families and au pairs from all over the world. Au Pairs from Spain, South Korea and South Africa are placed with American families, Rhode Island families, right now! Join the growing group of families who are enhancing the lives of their children with au pair childcare. Contact me, Joan Lowell, your Go Au Pair Local Area Representative in the Providence area.