On Sunday, June 10th the Suffolk County APIA au pairs met at their Community Counselor’s home for their annual Water & Summer Safety Cluster Meeting.
When the au pairs first arrived they painted beach rocks to symbolize their country flags. June 14th is Flag Day and Cindy Garruba, the Community Counselor, thought this would be a good opening activity to give au pairs an opportunity to interact with one another and be creative.
Though the weather was cloudy, some of the au pairs did spend a little time on the beach before the safety lesson.
The lesson included summer safety tips on using sunscreen, warnings on sunburn, sunstroke, poison ivy, ticks and Lyme disease, mosquitos, and basic first aid for cuts & scrapes.
Every au pair on Long Island is near a beach, many have host families with pools in their backyard. Cindy, a former lifeguard and swim instructor, discussed safety around pools and on beaches. The biggest emphasis was on preventing accidents from happening!
After all of the important information was shared and discussed, Cindy served strawberries and cream. It is Strawberry season on Long Island and many of the farms will have festivals this month. The biggest festival is in Mattituck from June 14 – 17.
Suffolk APIA au pairs prepared an International Cookbook for their host moms for Mother’s Day. They provided their favorite recipes from their countries and pictures with their host moms.
Au Pairs from Brazil, Colombia, Croatia, France, Germany, Panama, South Africa, and Thailand contributed recipes and gave the cookbook to their Host Moms as a gift. Feeling like part of the family is an essential part of the Au Pair in America program!
Special thanks to all the au pairs who contributed and their wonderful host moms. Thank you for sharing your cultures, your homes and your friendship!
The Au Pairs from APIA Suffolk County enjoyed an afternoon of college basketball. The men’s team at Suffolk County Community College won their game today while the au pairs cheered along.
It was Tabea’s last cluster meeting. She earned her education certificate and we all wished her well on her next journey. She is headed home to Germany and hoping to have a visit soon from the friends she met here.
Local Au Pair, Kim from Germany shared the differences between Christmas in Germany and in the USA. She won a contest for her great article
Vanessa Kleyer from Germany volunteers regularly in her host child’s 3rd grade class in Mastic Beach. She brings in games from Germany and plays with a some of the kids during their lunch break. The week before the holiday break, Vanessa gave the kids a special lesson. She taught them a little about her country.
First she had her host child find Germany on the world map. They learned how far away Germany is from the USA.
She told them some stories that were written in German and the children were excited when Vanessa introduced her mother visiting her for the holidays. Her Mom read “The Princess and the Pea” in German to the children after telling them about the story. The children listened intently.
Each child received a piece of chocolate from Germany to try. Then they split up into groups with the teacher, assistants, Vanessa and her Mom to play some German games in small groups. The lesson was fun and informative. The children truly loved hearing about Germany from their friend Vanessa!Learn more about Global Awareness, sponsored by Au Pair in America, by visiting the Global Awareness website. http://www.globalawareness.com/
On Sunday October 23rd, 20 Au Pair in America clusters gathered in NYC for the Annual APIA Scavenger Hunt. Teams left from the NYC Library steps and searched for 3 hours!
Some au pairs won raffle prizes:
When the teams arrived back they were given a candy bar and their points for arrival time. Community Counselors from APIA checked their lists for items found.
4 winning teams were awarded. Points were awarded for return time, and the most items found. Everyone had fun!
On Sunday, September 18th the Suffolk County Cluster of Au Pairs gathered for a fun and useful cluster meeting. Each au pair painted a heart ornament for a holiday tree we will decorate in December. The hearts represented their country or time in the USA.
The craft project gave each au pair a chance to be creative. She also had time to socialize with other au pairs. Many of the au pairs arrived during the summer months and this was their first meeting! Beautiful ornaments will be added to the holiday treeThen we had a few safety and back to school tips to review:
- Playground safety
- Minimizing morning madness
- The backpack – communication between school and home
- School bus stop safety
- Distracted driving
- Driving tips for all au pairs
- September is Baby Safety Month and safety was reviewed
We also went over some upcoming great activities for au pairs this fall. Then everyone enjoyed socializing while having some pumpkin pie and apple cider.
Saturday, July 30th Au Pair in America and Camp America J-1 Visa au pairs and camp counselors came together to give back to the local community. They spent an afternoon cleaning and sorting shoes donated by AIFS staff, host families and campers. The shoes will be given to charities here on Long Island who help families. The event took place at Camp Pa Qua Tuck in Center Moriches.
Everyone worked hard, enjoyed the day and earned a certificate from AIFS, the American Institute of Foreign Study. Check out all the AIFS programs here. We bring the world together!
J Day is being celebrated all over the USA and Au Pair in America is always happy to give back to the communities we serve.