Au Pairs come to America for a cultural exchange experience and to care for the children of their American Host Families. While some families will make use of this flexible childcare option on New Year’s Eve, others will include their Au Pair in their evening festivities, while still others will give their Au Pair the night off to experience what the local area has to offer.
Here is where I come in. I am Joan Lowell, LAR (Local Area Representative) for Go Au Pair, your cultural childcare experience agency since 1989. I am here to provide guidance and support to both Host Families and Au Pairs throughout the entire experience. One way to do that is to help families suggest safe and fun activities that their au pairs can participate in the local area.
Today I would like to suggest families discuss their Au Pairs plans before New Year’s Eve, like today or tomorrow. If the Au Pair is on-duty, what will the Host Family do to include him or her in the family’s festivities? Will the family travel and visit folks or will they host something at home? If the Au Pair is off-duty, the family should remind the Au Pair of some basic guidelines, such as the curfew (for car and/or Au Pair), rules on drinking and driving, and general rules about unexpected events or changes in plans. Most families expect their Au Pair to call if late or something changed, or just to keep in touch so the family doesn’t worry. Host Families feel responsible for their Au Pairs even if they are over 18; they are still young adults in a big, busy world.
After the family has discussed expectations, it’s a great idea to suggest places, events or friends who might be partying too. I can’t stress this enough – please have this conversation with your Au Pair, even if he or she has been with your family for months. Even if your Au Pair says he or she will not be drinking that night, make sure you let them know about drinking and driving and its dangers and the likelihood of immediate deportation if they are caught. In RI, CT and NJ, there are programs in every county called Designated Driver Services. Download the app for AmRide on the App Store or call 855-426-7433. AmRide is a paid service where you can order an insured driver to come to your location and drive your vehicle safely home, with you in the passenger seat.
Finally, the local options are endless if you and your Au Pair want to ring out the old and ring in the new out on the town. RI Monthly Magazine has a list of 25 places to party that night, and they are located all over the state. GoProvidence.com has special packages and offerings, plus links to many other downtown happenings. The city-celebration for the night will be at the RI Convention Center and is called One Providence New Year’s Eve Ball – this is a new, first-annual event replacing First Night celebrations of the past and costs $50 per person. Or if you are like me, stay home and watch the ball drop.
Oh yes, the ball. If you are daring enough, as most Au Pairs are, you could go to NYC to Times Square and watch the famous ball drop, or not. Online packages are still available t attend the NYC ball drop, starting at $259, if you want to go – it’s only two days away!
Whatever you do, do it safely and enjoy the last night of 2015. I will contact my Host Families and Au Pairs within the first few days of the new year to check in, but feel free to contact me first, if needed! Call me at 401.309.1925 or message me at firstname.lastname@example.org. For your own cultural childcare experience, register online for free at http://www.goaupair.com/Providence, no matter your city.