Keeping Up with the Davis Family: “Will They All Listen to Me?”

March 20th, 2017

Keeping Up with the Davis Family: “Will They All Listen to Me?” | Au Pair in America (APIA)

Mellissa, a former au pair from South Africa, is one of several au pairs that stayed with the Davis family in Chicago over the past two decades. These wonderful ladies, along with the Davis family, have agreed to periodically share their thoughts and experiences related to Au Pair in America as part of an ongoing series, Keeping Up with the Davis Family. Through firsthand experiences about what it’s like to participate in our cultural exchange program, this international family is providing everyone a chance to learn more about au pair child care.

It has been almost four years now that I am back in South Africa, and I have not regretted one moment of my time spent with the Davis family. The Davis children, every one of them, are special in their own way. I remember our morning rides to school and pickups. I am sure if I could mention every treasured moment I spent with each of them, I could write a book that would consist of endless chapters.

I arrived in the USA in 2012 as an au pair to a family with two children. After the first month, I entered into rematch, and the first family that contacted me was the Davis family.

My first phone call memory is slightly vague, but I do remember my host mom, Jennifer, telling me that she has 6 children. It came as shock and the first question I asked was, “will they all listen to me?”

With a giggle, Jennifer said “is that the only question that you have? I would think you would ask more questions.” Thinking back about it now brings a giggle to myself. Read the rest of this entry »

Au Pair of the Year Award Winners Announced

February 27th, 2017

Au Pair of the Year Awards 2016 | Au Pair in America

Each year it is our privilege to honor a number of remarkable young women that have helped transform American families with cultural exchange and flexible child care through Au Pair in America. After a record number of nominations this year, it is with great enthusiasm that we announce our Au Pair of the Year Award winners for 2016: Read the rest of this entry »

Spotlight on Community Service: Au Pair Nora from Germany

February 24th, 2017

Spotlight on Community Service: Au Pair Nora from Germany | Au Pair in America

We are so impressed by how many of our au pairs donate their time and talents to community service work. This week’s spotlight is on Nora Botzenhardt. Nora is an au pair from Germany living with her host family in Maryland and a State Winner for the 2016 Au Pair Community Service Awards. She shared the following about her volunteer work at a local elementary school. 

 My Name is Nora, I’m 26 years old and from Berlin in Germany. My journey as an au pair began last September. I arrived in a little town in the suburbs of Washington D.C., named Kensington in the state of Maryland. I take care of two sweet boys with the age of seven and nine. Since I’m an EduCare au pair, I only work 30 hours a week and have a lot of time on my hands. I love the educational component of this program but there is still more I want to do.

After about three weeks after my arrival I began to look for opportunities to volunteer. My host mom was a big help with this matter. Back in Germany I got my undergrad and my Masters in Education, Arts and Management, so we tried to figure out what kind of opportunities I would have to volunteer. She wrote to the art teacher of my host kids elementary school. We met up and there was an instant connection. Read the rest of this entry »

Former Au Pair Shares Appreciation

February 15th, 2017
Former Au Pair Shares Appreciation | Au Pair in America

Rachel and her husband

We always enjoy reconnecting with au pairs and host families from over the past three decades. Recently, we were excited to hear from a former au pair whose niece just completed an extended exchange as an au pair. What a wonderful thing to run in the family!

Here’s what Rachel, our former au pair from England, had to say about Au Pair in America and the opportunity to visit the United States, experience American culture and become a part of a great host family: Read the rest of this entry »

Spotlight on Community Service: Au Pair Abigail Wilks

February 6th, 2017

Spotlight on Community Service: Au Pair Abigail Wilks | Au Pair in America

We are so impressed by how many of our au pairs donate their time and talents to community service work. This week’s spotlight is on Abigail Wilks. Abigail is an au pair from the United Kingdom living with her host family in New York and a State Winner for the 2016 Au Pair Community Service Awards. She shared the following about her volunteer work helping recovering addicts. 

My name is Abigail Wilks. I live in Bronxville, NY and I volunteer at a non-profit growing organization call MARS (Medication-Assisted Recovery Services). Before I began my journey with Au Pair in America I had spent the last three years during University volunteering at a family support center. I supported underprivileged families going through a variety of things, such as the loss of a loved one, to a parent attending drug rehabilitation. Read the rest of this entry »

In Support of Cultural Exchange

February 1st, 2017

In Support of Cultural Exchange | Au Pair in America

Our world is a beautiful place. Let’s continue to embrace the ideals of cultural exchange and foster greater understanding among the people of the world. Over thirty years ago, Au Pair in America became the first cultural exchange program to provide a culturally enriching child care solution to American families while simultaneously providing young adults from overseas a chance to live and study in the U.S. We adopted a vision which simply states we bring the world together.

Au Pair in America is a resounding success, because our participants—American families and international au pairs—form caring, meaningful connections with each other that endure long beyond the end of the exchange term. Since 1986, more than 100,000 American families have welcomed an au pair to live as part of their family. These are people from all walks of life with varying cultures, religions and nationalities. They come together with open minds in the spirit of family and friendship.

Today, we need to follow the example of au pairs and host families over the past thirty years: participate in open dialogue; share your opinions; use your voice and listen when others are brave enough to do the same. Read the rest of this entry »

Au Pair in America Provides First Aid Training

February 1st, 2017

Au Pair in America Provides First Aid Training

There are many reasons why Au Pair in America is known for providing trusted, live-in child care since 1986. One very important reason is the exceptional preparation our au pairs receive as part of participating in this unique cultural exchange opportunity. Among many firsts, we were the first organization to include special Red Cross training for au pairs in preparation for their time caring for infants and children in American homes.

Continuing this tradition of excellence, a fantastic group of au pairs recently Read the rest of this entry »

New Jersey Au Pairs Volunteer at Red Cross Event

January 30th, 2017

New Jersey Au Pairs Volunteer at Red Cross Event | Au Pair in America

Volunteering and community service opportunities are a great way for au pairs to meet people and build meaningful connections over their time in the U.S. Recently, Au Pair in America Community Counselor Denise E. in New Jersey joined a group of au pairs from her cluster to volunteer at Run for the Red 5K Race and Walk.

This was the third year in a row that Denise’s cluster volunteered in support of this event to benefit the American Red Cross. She was joined by au pairs representing several countries, including Poland, Germany and the Czech Republic. This wonderful group helped out at the refreshment table as runners and walkers enjoyed a scenic course through the South Mountain Reservation in Millburn, New Jersey. Read the rest of this entry »

Fabiola Follows Her Dreams

January 25th, 2017

Fabiola Followers Her Dreams | Au Pair in AmericaFabiola, an au pair from Costa Rica, recently wrote to share how happy she is to have followed her dreams to join a host family through Au Pair in America. Her thoughts about this experience provide great insight for families considering au pair child care.

I am Fabiola Rodríguez Guillén. I’m 26 years old and from Costa Rica. I came to the United States six months ago with the great illusion that I would have a great year. My instinct did not betray me, because they have been the best of my life. I’m so happy to share with all of you about my experience as an au pair.

Read the rest of this entry »

Spotlight on Community Service: Au Pair Nadine from Germany

January 11th, 2017

Spotlight on Community Service: Au Pair Nadine from Germany | Au Pair in America

We are so impressed by how many of our au pairs donate their time and talents to community service work. This week’s spotlight is on Nadine Shulte. Nadine is an au pair from Germany living with her host family in Louisiana and a State Winner for the 2016 Au Pair Community Service Awards. She shared the following about her volunteer work with a local elementary school and more.   

I volunteered in several places during my time as an au pair, but in my extension year I wanted something more than just doing it once in a while. I love to work with kids, and so I decided to volunteer twice a week in the kindergarten class of my host child. It is amazing to see how happy you can make children just with being there for them, play with them or encourage them to try again reading the word or name the number right.

One of the best moments always is when I walk into the classroom and all the kids looking up, smiling and welcome me with a “Hi Mrs. Nadine,” or the moment when I got my first craft from one of the girls, and of course when I get a hug goodbye. All these moments are so heartwarming, and I love being together with these kids; it is great to see how much they learned over the past few months in reading, writing and math.

I learned a lot about the American culture and lifestyle, because who is better in explaining things than cute little kids, and of course I heard a lot of stories and memories so I get a great view in the American life—and I also love to share with them my culture. Read the rest of this entry »