Family Defoort-Van den Eede from Ubbergen

We live far away from our family, we both work many hours a week, sometimes irregular and ever-changing hours. In short, our work schedule is not adapted to coordinate our time with the times of school and nursery. So the question came up, is it good for your children to be at school from 08:00AM to 17:30PM? What if they get sick? There are options like day care or someone that can stay with the children during the day, but if you have an evening out or a long meeting at night you need to find a separate babysitter, this was big worry and time consuming. An Au Par for us is a: a young, dynamic girl who brings a bit of culture from her own country, help and support the host family and is a more flexible option than other mentioned.

But how do you choose someone that you can trust? How do one you arrange everything for them and what if it does not work out? Before we made any decision we asked around and had some insightful conversations with families that make use of Au Pairs and they all said we should get in touch with an Au Pair agency.

We’ve had five South African Au Pairs coming from very different backgrounds. This gives you a good insight into the true culture of this country, with all its nuances. Both of our children excel in their Language work at school, which we attributed to a kind of “multilingualism” that comes from having an Au Pair (Dutch, Afrikaans, English). The most important thing I think you pass down to your children with this experience is that there are other cultures, languages ​​and skin colours and as long as you respect each other everything will turn out great. Just like it’s important to teach them that there are cultural differences, we can teach our children that there are personality differences as well. Everyone is different, and we cannot decide who was our best Au Pair, they were all different in their own way. All in all we met some very nice people and we still stay in contact with them. We are planning to go South Africa next year and visit our previous Au Pairs.

Au Pair International in collaboration with the partner agencies abroad provided a great selection of Au Pairs. We know that it is important that we trust the person we are inviting into our home. The help Au Pair International gave us was timely and accurate and the assistance we got was very professional. The laws and regulations of the program changes frequently so it is important to have an agency who can let you know of any changes and what steps one should take. I found the excursions to be of great importance for the Au Pairs. In this way they get to know other Au Pairs and often develop great bonds and friendships with the other Au Pairs. If the Au Pair feels at home in The Netherlands and the Au Pair builds up a strong support system to keep her spirits up, she will interact better with the kids and the atmosphere at home will bet a lot more positive.

We are very satisfied with the support of Au Pair International. We have often heard of other host families and Au Pairs who have not been supported by their agencies, they were left to fend for themselves; this is the total opposite at Au Pair International. In my experience the staff is really committed to the wellbeing of the Au Pair and the host family. There are regular follow-up phone calls and Skype interviews, should a problem arise they will handle and discuss the matter with care and give timely feedback.

Be prepared for anything, we have experienced the best support from Au Pair International when things did not turn out as we hoped. The help and the support of the Au Pair Agency is of utmost importance when serious matters needs to be addressed. When things turned out bad we luckily had the support of a well organized and endorsed Au Pair agency. Thank you Au Pair International.