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ул. Крещатик, 46б,
г. Киев, 01001
2 этаж
тел.: (044) 239 19 19
факс: (044) 490 56 10


Useful Advice: AU PAIR Programs


Child Care

As an Au Pair, child care will be one of your main duties.

For much of the time the children will be attending school or nursery and one of your duties may be taking the children to and from school/nursery, and staying with them until a parent comes home from work.

Remember they are children! They will want to play games, be read to and have fun with you. Be creative with the children and plan interesting activities which will make the time spent together more enjoyable and fun for you and the children.

During your working hours you are 'on duty' whether the parents are at home or not. Be very SAFETY CONSCIOUS. Know where the children are at all times and be attentive.

The children will be brought up in a different manner than in your own country and may appear to be spoilt but if you are patient, and don't lose your temper easily, and can laugh and joke them out of a bad temper your relationship with them will be good and enjoyable.

Remember, when you first arrive the children will probably be wary of you, as you will be a stranger to them but if you are friendly and take an interest in them, children can be won over quite easily! Try to remember yourself as a child and put yourself in their place. Understanding is a key to friendship!

Your first week or so may be difficult to begin with as you settle into your new surroundings and get to know your host family and their children, but most Au Pairs settle in very quickly and make lasting friendships with their family!

Each family is different, but your duties may include ironing, dusting, vacuuming, light cooking for the children, keeping children's rooms tidy, and general tidying of the house.

Be willing, try to do things without being asked by using your initiative and make sure you know what the family expects of you.

Be positive and enthusiastic in your attitude and when your family asks you to do something make sure it gets done, don't wait until later.

Remember it is your responsibility to keep your own bedroom and bathroom clean and tidy.

Language Classes

Huge benefits of being an Au Pair, attending a language class are very important and are taken during your free time. Whilst you are responsible for the cost of your language class some host families may wish to contribute towards the cost.

This is a great way to meet friends and learn more about the culture. Ask lots of questions, don't be afraid to speak to your teacher, this will help to improve your fluency and broaden your language skills.

Family Life

As an Au Pair you will be considered to be a member of the family. Show an interest in your family; get involved, you will make lifelong friends!

It is important to recognize when to give the parents private time, on their own maybe or with the children. It is also important for YOU to have private time and space to maybe study, read, or write letters.

COMMUNICATION with your host family is very important. Should you have any worries or fears, feel homesick or any other problem, you must talk with your host family. Be open with them. They will want to know how you are feeling and will want to help you.

As a visitor from another country you may find some situations very different to your own country and may even experience culture shock. Remember their culture may be very different to your own i.e. the family's lifestyle, their marital patterns, and the way they discipline their children.

Remember, if you talk to your host parents regularly it will be easier to talk to them about any problems you may be experiencing. This is a great opportunity for you to practice your communication skills, especially using another language.

Social Life

Take the opportunity to make friends, especially at your language school and don't be afraid to introduce yourself to people.

Always be careful, especially at night. Never travel alone at night, only with friends and never take rides from strangers or people you do not know well. Always arrange for a reputable taxi or minicab to pick you up and take you home. They should have an identity card. Give your name when you telephone and ask the driver to confirm the name before you get in the car.

Never take a ride from someone who offers you a lift and says he is a taxi driver. However, if you do get stuck with no lift home, call your host family who will either make arrangements for you to be collected or collect you themselves. They won't mind as long as you don't do it regularly!

Be flexible. Work with your family and their schedule. Plan in advance when you can. If you are doing a good job and the family is happy with you, they will try to be flexible as well.

Your host family is to a large extent responsible for you so please respect their house rules and curfews. They will be also concerned about your ability to function properly with the children during the day which could be hampered by a too hectic social life! Try to understand how the family might feel if your late nights affected your care of the children.

Reading, studying, letter writing, hair washing, etc., should be done in your free time. You should not take a book onto the beach while you are looking after children and it is vital to ALWAYS keep your eye on them. You should not bring friends into the house, male or female, without the prior consent of the family. It is wise not to sleep out overnight except in particular circumstances and you should first discuss it with the family. It is common courtesy to tell them if you are going out and expect to return later than usual.

Settling Down Problems

Expect to be homesick and accept it while it lasts. IT WILL PASS! Most Au Pairs will feel homesick anywhere between the first 2-3 weeks they are with their new family. DO NOT BOTTLE IT UP - DISCUSS IT WITH THE FAMILY. The best way to overcome homesickness is to get involved with your new family, make new friends and stay interested in what you are doing.

Changing host families is possible, but do not think that if you have any problems that you can just find a new family. You will have to work to make the placement a good experience. However, if you have problems that you cannot resolve with your host family directly, you should contact us.

The thing which families complain about more than anything is that some Au Pairs abuse the use of the telephone by running up HUGE telephone bills which do not always come to light until after the Au Pair has gone home! If you like to talk with your family and friends on a regular basis, please reverse the charges or ask them to call you.

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(044) 230-8373
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