Au Pair and Family Successes During COVID-19

/Au Pair and Family Successes During COVID-19

With many parents working full time from home and their children home full time as well, parents are finding it difficult to work, provide child care, and home school their children all at the same time.  We all know that child care and teaching are also full-time jobs so how are parents getting this all done?  We have heard from our Host Families that their Au Pairs have been rising to the occasion and have been taking on this new challenge along with them.  Many Host Parents have expressed gratitude for their Au Pairs and the extra tasks for their children they have taken on so Parents can work and continue to provide for their families.  Please take a moment to read about these wonderful Au Pairs.

Imagine the excitement of hosting your first au pair, you have taken countless hours combing through profiles and interviewed multiple candidates, and then you find the perfect Au Pair.  Your Au Pair has gotten her visa approved and you are planning for her arrival, your kids are excited, you are excited.  As a Host Family, you have waited so long and now your new Au Pair has arrived and all you want is to start to build a bond with her.  Then, everything changes.  Businesses are closed, schools have closed, and your family and Au Pair are together in self-isolation.

This has been the reality for many Host Parents and Au Pairs but, brand new Host Parents, Sean and Mary, and Au Pair, Katy have made the very best of this difficult situation.

Sean and Mary have only been hosting Katy since January and in that short amount of time, they have found that the Katy they interviewed is far more amazing than they expected.  They chose Katy because they felt her personality, experience, motivations, and priorities would align wonderfully with their family’s needs and values.  It is remarkable that in three months they have put their walls down and have opened themselves up to building a loving family relationship.

“She’s been incredibly patient and compassionate as we all transition into our new norm.  We love her encouragement, enthusiasm, and courage-and are so grateful for her!!”

Putting Teaching Skills and Experience to Work

Katy is passionate about teaching and feels teaching is the best way she can help and serve others.  She has been teaching children in her home country, Ecuador, prior to becoming an Au Pair.  Sean and Mary have been amazed at Katy’s willingness to facilitate their three school-aged children’s academics.  She has been able to take on the responsibility of homeschooling all while doing her regular duties, like helping with meals for the kids, keeping their areas clean, playing with the kids, and evening routines.

“Facilitating academic activities for them, taking all three children outside on adventures around the area, and even joining in for playroom dance and yoga sessions.  She’s coming up with new worksheets and activities for the kids to do every day, and is putting her teaching skills to work”

“Her Attitude is Amazing”

In a time when things are uncertain, Sean and Mary have seen their children thrive in the environment that Katy has created for them.  She has taken so much stress off her host family and went above and beyond their expectations.  Sean and Mary have both been able to continue working full time and Mary has been working on her doctorate degree at home, which is stressful enough but even more so when your kids are also completing school at home as well.  Katy has become a part of their family and has received love and support from them in such a short amount of time.

“She has risen to the challenge of setting up a new daily routine with our three children.  She is open and honest about being concerned for and missing her family, but is also taking the initiative in many ways.”

Many small businesses have been feeling pressure in the last month with the future uncertain, entire families stuck at home, and children to teach and care for.  It can be difficult enough to own your own business but think about owning two businesses, parenting four kids, and dealing with this worldwide pandemic.  Host Parents, Phil and Nikki, each own their own businesses and they have two school-aged children, a toddler, and a baby.  How do they keep their household going with everything that is going on?  The answer is their Au Pair, Chanel.  Host Families have been feeling relieved to have an Au Pair in their home as many other child care providers and schools have been forced to close.

“Wow. I have no idea where to start….without Chanel, we would have been in trouble.  She’s an honest godsend for our family.  These past couple of weeks have been so trying and her patience with everyone has been unparalleled”

“I’m so glad she extended, I wish we had more time with her”

Phil and Nikki have been hosting their Au Pair, Chanel, for just over a year.  They decided on hosting an Au Pair over other child care options because as two busy parents working from home, with four children, they needed someone to help them with daily routines and even on family trips.  They have loved their first year with her and decided to extend with each other for another year.  The work they put in during their first year to build a strong relationship has made the transition from year one to starting year two and the transition to stay at home orders amazingly easy because Chanel is flexible and has been rolling with the punches.

“She’s keeping the schedule for the little ones and she has been helping my daughter with match while Phil and I have been working”

Au Pairs have been able to keep a sense of normalcy in their Host Families’ lives and keep daily routines moving with so many changes and challenges many people are facing.

Many parents have been worried about the impact this worldwide pandemic is having and will have on their children.  Children have been forced out of school and many are confused about what is happening and why.  They don’t understand why they can’t see their friends and teachers and why they have to stay home.  Host Parents Robby and Andrea have worried about their two girls and the impact on their lives, but they are grateful to have their Au Pair, Sophie, there to create a happy place for their children in this difficult time.

Robby and Andrea chose to host an Au Pair over other child care options because they wanted extra help during the week to free them up to spend more quality time with their kids.  They also wanted their children to view themselves as a part of the global community and having an Au Pair from a different culture living with them would be a great way to expose them to a different culture.  Their Au Pair, Sophie, is from Germany and they have spent the last nine months building an amazing unforgettable experience for each other.

“We never imagined we could have ended up with someone the girls adored so much.  We appreciate your patience every day, your resilience and positive attitude in light of all the current challenges, and your dedication to being our Au Pair.  We love having you as part of our family”

“We are so lucky to have you!”

Sophie finished her last year of what would be high school in the U.S. and decided it was important to her future to do something with children or to help people.  Becoming an Au Pair was the perfect experience for her to start to fulfill her dreams.  She has followed her dreams the past nine months and has persevered through the struggles COVID-19 has brought on to her and her Host Family.  Her Host Family has been grateful to have Sophie during this challenging time and they couldn’t have imagined their daughters in such capable hands.

During these unprecedented times, everyone is looking for a bit of normalcy in their day to day lives.  Many people would not think that a 19-year-old from South Africa would be the one to be that unwavering support in their family.

“My daughters are happy, she is maintaining normalcy and consistency for them, and is communicating well with me throughout this difficult time.”

James and Amber, parents of 6-year-old twins, work busy full-time jobs in the healthcare legal and real estate fields. They are first-time Host Parents to Janine, their Au Pair. Initially, they were looking for someone that was kind, caring, and engaging with their kids. They found Janine, who describes herself as hardworking, independent, and reliable.

Janine’s Host Family is amazed that she has become such a rock of support for them.  It can be stressful for schedules and responsibilities to change so suddenly, but Janine has shown she can be flexible and can adapt to any situation with ease.

From Au Pair to Teacher and Back Again

There is no way Janine could know she would be stepping into the role of teacher for her Host Kids.  One of Janine’s child care references knew she could do it though, writing that Janine is “so patient she could be a teacher.

Now that Janine has taken over teaching her Host Kids during the day, and continuing her regular Au Pair duties, her Host Parents are even more grateful to have her as part of their family.

“I am so grateful to Janine!! She has stepped into the role of full-time elementary teacher with ease and grace, allowing me to continue to concentrate on work.”

Ana has stepped up in a big way to help her Host Family.  Not only with the basic daily tasks like healthy meals, homeschooling, speaking Spanish with the kids but also coming up with creative games to make being stuck at home fun.  Making a jelly fish tank, crafts, playing pirate ship battle, salsa dancing, and making backyard s’mores.  The Host Family says they will carry these memories all their lives.  Ana and her Host Family have taken something that has been difficult to deal with for everyone and made it in to a loving and caring cultural experience.

“Ana, you are amazing!  What would we do without you here during this time?!?!  Thank you for stepping up in such a huge way and bringing so much love into each and every day. The jelly fish tank, crafts, pirate ship battle, salsa dancing, s’mores – All the memories that we will carry of you all our lives.  We love you and cannot imagine our family without you!”

“What would we do without you?”

Colleen and Fritz, parents of 4 children, both work full time jobs.  With 4 children you can imagine that help is needed to ensure the children receive all the love and care they need.  As stay at home orders move throughout the U.S. many families are together at home, all the time, for the first time.  Parents have a lot on their plate:  work, meals, homeschooling, and kids getting bored.  Many Host Families don’t know how they would be able to get through all of this without the help of their Au Pairs and that is exactly how Colleen and Fritz feel about their Au Pair, Ana.

An Au Pair that can Step up during unexpected situations

When a Host Family looks for an Au Pair they don’t typically think about how much an Au Pair can help them during an unexpected situation, like a worldwide pandemic.  Host Families usually think about their child care needs on a regular day and finding someone that will become a team member in their family.  Colleen and Fritz were looking for an Au Pair that spoke Spanish, someone that would foster healthy habits for their children, and someone that could keep their children safe and emotionally stimulated.  Little did they know that the very things they were looking for would be what they needed in an Au Pair to help them through this difficult time.

They found Ana, an Au Pair candidate from Colombia.  Spanish was a given, but while interviewing Ana they found out so much more.  Not only did Ana have experience as a nanny and teaching but, Ana has volunteered in a foundation that helps children that have behavioral problems and has cared for 12 children at a time.  Something the Family found interesting was that Ana described she is very interested in learning the children’s personalities and interests and “talking with love” when children misbehave.

One of the main goals of the Au Pair program is for Au Pairs and Host Families to share their cultures with each other and learn from each other.  There is no better time than now to share with those in your home.

Multi-Cultural Home

Bill and Elizabeth, parents of a 1 year old and a 7 year old, are a multi-cultural family.  With one parent of Chinese descent they are able to share American and Chinese culture with their Au Pair, Carina.

Carina has been bettering her English and has been experiencing her Host Family’s cultures.  She has been teaching her host children Spanish and Carina loves her host mom’s Chinese home cooked meals.

“Carina is doing great!! We truly love her as a family member. She is caring and flexible. I don’t need to tell her twice about any request. She plays well with my 7 years old. Now with lockdown, she is teaching my daughter Spanish every day. I love to watch their Spanish class either in the kitchen or on the floor. She loves our son too. She speaks Spanish to him often. He started asking for “aqua”! :))  We take care of her too. She loves my Chinese cooking. We chat with her mom on video calls. It is hard for her not being able to hang out with other au pairs on the weekends when she is not working. “

Recipe for a Family

Bill, Elizabeth, and Carina have truly experienced what it means to be a Host Family and Au Pair.  Carina became an Au Pair because she loves to care for children and she felt being an Au Pair was the perfect chance to live in the U.S. and learn about different cultures.  Families come together in tough times and this Host Family and Au Pair have made the best of their situation.

“Many aspects of my person changed after this experience that in many moments was also painful, this helped me to open my mind, and see life in a different way, I feel a much more sure person of myself, and much more independent. I know that after a fall I just have to get up and start again, that I am my only limit and that there is nothing I cannot do. The experience as an au pair made it easier for me to meet extraordinary people and different cultures, it was one of the most difficult experiences of my life but to which I am very grateful, because it flourished in my values ​​that I did not know what I could achieve and gave me the opportunity to see extraordinary places that you thought only existed in wall pictures.”

Cindy is a single mom of 7-year-old twins and works a full-time job in a busy retail industry.  If life wasn’t hectic enough, throw in the current situation COVID-19 has brought upon us all and Cindy would be panicking.  Luckily Cindy has Tehila, her Au Pair.

Searching for a New Role Model for Her Kids

Six months ago, Cindy found herself looking for a new Au Pair, after she had ended a placement with an Au Pair early because of some personality differences. Cindy was looking for someone kind, positive, and could be a role model for her children; specifically, someone who had goals they wanted to fulfill in life.  She also needed an excellent driver and someone who could make healthy meals for her children.

Cindy landed on Tehila, an Au Pair from South Africa.  A reference describes Tehila as “generous, loving, and kind”, which was perfect for what Cindy was looking for.  Tehila chose to become an Au Pair because she wanted to better herself, gain more self-confidence, and to experience other cultures and show others her culture.

Au Pair “Can now add Homeschool Teacher on her resume”

Cindy is now working from home full time for a company that has essential business during the COVID-19 pandemic.  The twins are now home full time as well and need to finish schoolwork along with the other daily things kids need.

“As of yesterday we are doing formal virtual classroom stuff with my kids’ 2nd grade teachers, and I told Tehila she can now put Homeschool Teacher on her resume, as she is pretty much leading my kids through their learning every day while I deal with the craziness of my work reality.”

Tehila has taken on new responsibilities for her host children and Cindy has found a way to make things work to accommodate Tehila as well through constant communication.  Cindy says they help each other keep balanced during this time of isolation and have made adjustments to the schedule so Tehila can go out for morning runs and have personal time while the goals for the children are still achieved.  Tehila’s mother is a nurse in South Africa, and Tehila has experienced other viral outbreaks in her home country over the years from her mother’s experience. Cindy says this has helped Tehila cope with the current situation in the U.S.

“This would NOT be at all doable for me if I did not have a good Au Pair.”

Host Parents, Amy and Chris, have three children and needed a child care provider that is calm, patient, organized, and detail orientated.  Their children love the outdoors so someone that would take the kids outside to play was essential.  As parents with jobs in law enforcement and healthcare they have complex schedules that require flexibility so when COVID-19 became a world-wide pandemic, schools closed, and everyone began self isolation they worried how this would affect their children.

Host Parents feel they “Hit one out of the park” when they matched with Au Pair Mikayla

The Host Family matched with their Au Pair, Mikayla, back in November of 2019 but they did not need her to arrive until March of 2020.  They chose Mikayla because of her child care experience, her driving experience, and she enjoys outdoor activities.  Mikayla loves outdoor activities and supports the idea of limited screen time for children, the host family loved that she would be engaging with their children.  Mikayla also used to volunteer in her home country planting grass in play areas so children would have a place to play.

“The kids love her and her kindness has made a world of difference restoring their faith in others.  We hope she never leaves!”

Mikayla arrived to the U.S. the first week of March before international travel became suspended and with all the new world-wide changes it has been a whirl wind but the Host Parents feel at ease because of how exceptionally Mikayla has adjusted to not only the new challenges of becoming an Au Pair but also the new challenges they are facing due to COVID-19.

Mikayla has risen to the challenge and has been homeschooling the children while Amy and Chris continue to work full time jobs.

“Our kids have not only maintained but exceeded in their academics, I mean-wow!”

Our families agree… Au Pair child care is the best! Register for free today and start browsing Au Pair profiles.

“After years of stress and frustration, and many different nannies, we decided to look for an au pair. When Veronika arrived on January 2, 2016 our lives were forever changed. We had no idea that a real life Mary Poppins had just arrived!”

Carrie • Host Mom, Au Pair in Excellence Runner-up

“I can honestly say that bringing her to live with us as our au pair has been the best decision we could possibly have made. She has afforded us so many priceless “intangibles” during her time here that I can’t begin to quantify her contributions to our family.”

Jennifer • Host Mom
By |2023-10-23T10:42:51+00:00April 3rd, 2020|Success Stories|

About the Author:

Shonna has worked for Go Au Pair for 9 years. She started as a Placement Coordinator creating connections between Host Families and Au Pairs. Then moved in to the Au Pair and International space working with Au Pairs from all over the world. Now she writes helpful, inspiring, and fun content for Go Au Pair. If you are interested in sharing your experience, or if you have questions or would like assistance, please reach out to @ShonnaAuPairSis on Facebook or email
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