Finding an Au Pair or a Mothers Help
We will, through our personal selective matching service, help you to choose the most suitable Au Pair or Mother's Help for you and your family.
Our matching service is conducted based on your registration information and also from our discussions with you by listening to your real needs and requirements you expect from live-in support with childcare and domestic duties within your home. This essential information is the first step in finding an Au Pair or Mothers Help.
Au Pairs are usually aged between 17-27 from within the EU. There is no age restriction on EU nationals and so we do also find that we have older applicants also wanting to be Au Pairs on this Cultural Exchange Program. An Au Pair will want to improve their English level and understand and embrace British Culture.
An Au Pair can stay with a host family for 6 months - 2 years which does give you great continuity and you can build a rewarding good relationship within your home for children. Shorter placements are also arranged to cover the Summer Holidays as a Childcare solution.
Some Au Pairs can drive for the host family. We do encourage and recommend that you do allow the Au Pair to have some practice lessons first to adjust to UK driving.
Au Pair and Au Pair Plus
- An Au Pair can work between 25 - 35 hours per week and also do 2 evenings a week of babysitting. An Au Pair must also have 2 full free days off for their rest days. You can choose as the Host Family how the hours are spread out to suit your needs and requirements. We can help you to establish a routine that works best for your family. The minimum weekly pocket money allowance for up to and including 25 hours per week is £70 per week. Some Families do pay a little more.
- Usually, the only differences between an Au Pair or Au pair Plus are the number of working hours, not the types of duties and responsibilities as they would be the same. Additional hours can be worked by an Au Pair, i.e: school holidays and extra hours worked should be paid at a recommended £3.50 per hour guided by BAPAA guidelines and recommendations.
- An Au Pair should not be expected to have sole charge of a child below the age of 2 years.
- An Au Pair can be expected to do childcare and light housework duties such as; vacuuming, dusting, meal preparation and simple cooking, children's laundry/ironing - please ask us for more information in regards to this, especially of you may need more support in housework.
- A minimum of 2 weeks' notice is required to be given by the Host family or Au Pair should there be a change in circumstances.
- Au Pairs should be allowed the time to attend an English course. The usual lessons are twice a week for approximately 2-2.5 hours per session. Some Host Families do also contribute to the cost, or if living in a rural area, help contribute to travel costs.
- An Au Pair is not qualified in Childcare but will have had some experience in babysitting.
A Mothers Help is an individual who is usually a little older than Au Pair. They are willing to work longer hours than the 35 hours per week and are willing to take on more duties in childcare and housekeeping. Usual weekly hours would be 40 - 44 hours per week. They will still need to have 2 full days off a week. Please do speak to us about weekly money rates to pay to a Mothers Help and what the entitlements, Tax & NI would be. A Mothers Help will, the same as an Au Pair, will live with you like a Family member and have their full board and lodging with you.
Like Au Pairs, a Mothers Help will not be qualified in childcare unless they have worked in their Home Country as a School Teacher, Nanny or as Nursery Staff. If we do provide a Mothers Help that does have any qualifications like this - please be mindful that child rearing and education does differ slightly from country to country and you as a Host Family must provide the routine, training and support to your Mothers Help so she can settle in as quickly as possible.
Some Mothers Helps, if they have the experience and are willing, can have sole charge of children below the age of 2 years. Please do contact us to talk this through based on your needs as Family.
Everyday life can be full of non- stop activity. Children add yet more things to plan and organise. Arranging an Au Pair or Mothers Help is an ideal way to allow you to ensure the children are well looked after, even while you are busy. Accommodating an Au Pair or Mothers Help can be fun and a very rewarding and enjoyable experience for you, your child/children and the Au Pair or Mothers Help too.
We recommend that you register as early as possible for an Au Pair or Mothers Help as our rigorous selection process limits the number of applicants available. If at any time you are uncertain about anything or would like to ask further information, then please do not hesitate to contact us...
The first step required is for you to contact us to discuss your requirements (if you agree with our terms and conditions). This can be done by calling us on the telephone or by completing the 'registration page' below. If you complete the registration page, we will contact you also to discuss.
Once we have received your requirements we will liaise with our partner agencies to find suitable applicants that can fit in with your needs. All applicants will have been carefully screened.
We will send detailed information on the potential applicants to you by e-mail, Once you have selected an Au Pair or Mother's Help from the selection we will then arrange for you to interview the Au Pair to discuss requirements, placement and suitable start dates. Interviews are normally arranged by Skype or by a Phone call for you to speak with your selected applicants. The Interview Stage is an important part of the selection process. We can provide to you some "Suggested interview Questions" that you may well find useful.
On confirmation that both you and the Au Pair are happy we will then require a letter of invitation/introduction from you so that we can forward all your details onto our partner agency and the chosen applicant. T&C's will also need to be checked and signed. We can assist you with preparing a letter of invitation - please do ask us about this. At this time of confirmation stage, we will require payment of our agency fee. Only once we have received your payment will we confirm the start dates of the au pair to you.
Travel to the UK (and visas where necessary if coming from counties that are participants of the Tier 5 - Youth Mobility Scheme) are arranged by the applicant unless otherwise agreed.
We will provide you with all their travel dates time and arrival.
You will be required to meet your au pair at an airport/bus station or port on their arrival into the UK. Please confirm this with your new Au Pair/ Mothers' Help or contact us so that we can do this for you.
General Advice and Information
The word "Au Pair" means "on par" or equal too. Aupairs are young people who live with a British family so that they can learn about the English Language and culture. To get the best out of your relationship with your au pair it does help to take the following steps in order:
Before the Au Pair's arrival, please do keep in regular contact via email, telephone or Skype so that the Au Pair can feel assured that they will be going to a warm and welcoming family. (The Au Pair will be just as anxious as you but it is they who are leaving loved ones and friends behind)
Once the Au Pair has arrived, it's a good idea to go to the supermarket together so your au pair can show you what foods that they like.
Treat your Au Pair as you would as a family member or friend and encourage them to talk about their home life as much as possible i.e. ask if there are any photos that you can look at.......
Be sympathetic and compassionate as they could very well be feeling homesick. If homesickness is being experienced by your Au Pair then please do keep them busy, distracted and involve them more with your family. Having an Au Pair sitting alone in the bedroom upset and missing home is not healthy!
Have a guideline of expectations and routine ready for them so that when they arrive they can familiarise themselves with duties and tasks required, and house rules; this can help immensely if there are language restrictions at the very beginning on arrival. Working hours need to be emphasised on the daily routine too so that the Au Pair/Mothers Help can be clear in knowing what is free time and working time. Always be patient, allow the Au Pair or Mothers Help to ask questions and let them interact with your children instantly to build up a bond.
Encourage your Au Pair / Mothers Help to explore, make friends at their college classes and invite them on days out from time to time.
A welcome pack will be sent out to your home, to your new Au Pair/ Mother's help from us. We also make a "hello, how are you settling call in" call to your Au Pair or Mothers Help during the 2nd week of the placement.
A Family Handbook is available to all families by request - please ask.
The majority of Au Pairs (all from within EU countries) will be entitled to free medical treatment from the NHS if needed. It is advisable to get your au pair registered with your doctor soon after they arrive just as a precaution in case they may fall ill with flu or an infection at any time your family may be ill.
If an Au Pair is required to drive in England it is advisable to take them out for some lessons first so that they can gain confidence and experience with the English way of driving i.e. driving on the left, road signs, speed limits and speed cameras! You must also have adequate insurance to cover your au pair in case of any accidents. Please do ask for more information on this.
Remember, that communication is the key to a successful relationship with your Au Pair and that having an au pair is a good way to resolve child care needs as your children can be cared for in your own home. Likewise it is a great experience for the au pair to learn about our culture and way of life and to study English to further their education.