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What Can And Can't Your Community Counselor Do?
EurAupair is here to assist you if you are looking to host an au pair; from the moment you apply, until your au pair boards her return flight at the end of her program year! EurAupair is proud of its excellent, well-trained, and extremely knowledgeable team of Community Counselors and Area Coordinators who provide invaluable advice to host families and au pairs in our program. While they won’t hesitate to go above and beyond when needed, please do keep in mind that certain things can’t be asked or expected from them.
Assistance with The Au Pair Search
Your Community Counselor (CC) or Area Coordinator (AC) can suggest au pairs who may be a good fit for your family. Let us know what you are looking for (and keep in mind that tangible characteristic such as “older, good swimmer, Spanish-speaking” are easier to assess) and we will be more than happy to recommend au pair applicants to you.
However, your CC or AC can’t pre-screen or interview an au pair for you! While we want to help as much as possible, we think it’s critical for you to get a feel for the au pair early on in the process, and to give you a chance to ask questions that are important to you. Your CC or AC also can’t pick your au pair for you! While this may sound funny at first, you may be facing the difficult choice of choosing between your top two candidates! You can call your CC or AC to talk it through, but we’ll leave the decision up to you!
Availability During Emergencies
When an emergency arises, and by emergency, we mean something directly affecting the well-being of your children and family or your au pair, by all means please contact your CC or AC, or use the emergency phone number 1-800-333-3804, Ext. 2 so we may assist you.
While your CC or AC is often available right away, there are some situations in which we will ask you for patience. Please understand that we will most likely want to talk it through, calmly, with all parties. Also, understand your CC will not be available to pick-up your au pair if you and her get into a conflict; and your CC can’t approve a rematch. If dealing with such a situation after hours, on a weekend, or during a holiday, chances are your CC won’t be able to do a whole lot until the office reopens.
Monthly Meeting Scheduling
While your CC may generally take into account vacations or days your au pair is not available if given enough notice, we can’t expect a counselor to be able to please everyone every month. Each family and au pair has their own work schedule, class schedule, social life, trips & vacations… in addition to the CC’s personal life, work, and vacation! CC’s spend a great deal of time preparing their au pair meetings (finding a variety of activities to do to fit all or most au pairs’ preferences, schedules, and budget!), and attendance at all monthly meetings is mandatory in order to successfully complete her program. We kindly ask for your cooperation in ensuring your au pair is able to attend those.
Here again, as much as we respect your time, we kindly ask you to respect your CC’s time. If your CC leaves you a voicemail or sends you a text message asking for a call back, please find a few minutes to return the call. Your CC does need to speak with you every month and shouldn’t have to track you down for weeks to check-in on you! It’s a chance to let us know how things are going and if we can be of any help; if all is good, we won’t bother you for long!
Bringing Up Issues to Au Pairs
While we encourage all families and au pairs to seek their CC’s advice when having to deal with a concern, we also ask that issues are first addressed by host families and au pairs together, rather than being initiated by the counselor. We understand it’s not always easy, but I’m sure you’d prefer to hear from your au pair about a concern she may have rather than receiving a call from your CC; and the same goes the other way around!
If an issue you have addressed is not resolved, or if you really feel it is best for a third party to get involved, please ask your CC for help. Hygiene for example can be a tough topic to bring up, and your CC can speak about it at a meeting when mentioning cultural differences – without pointing out a particular au pair.