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The following is to answer some of the questions many families have about the program. If your question is not answered here please contact us and we will get back to you within 48 business hours.
Yes, all AIFS Au Pairs are happy to help with light household duties when those chores are childcare related such as tidying the children's room, making their beds, preparing light lunches, cleaning up the kitchen after the preparation of meals or doing the laundry. The primary objective for the Au Pair, however, is to care for your children. As the Au Pairs come to Australia for a cultural experience, they are not the family's housekeeper or cleaner.
Generally, we require at least 8 weeks notice to find an Au Pair for your family however for families seeking immediate assistance we reccommend you contact us about our short term program.
The matching process is highly time-intensive to ensure that the Au Pair matches the needs of your family, and that you are the family that will suit the profile the Au pair has given us. AIFS Au Pairs are living in their respective home country while we are matching them with their Host Families, and the matching process also requires us to book flights and apply for their visas.
Yes, all AIFS Au Pairs possess an International Driver's License and can assist for example with the school runs or with driving the children to school or sporting activities. It is the responsibility of the Host Family to assess the driving ability of the Au Pair before granting permission to operate a vehicle. If the Au Pair is required to use a motor vehicle, the Host Family will provide vehicle insurance coverage for the Au Pair and to have the Au Pair listed as a driver on the insurance policy of all vehicles that the Au Pair will use.
The Host Family agrees to limit any claim against the Au Pair for uninsured damages resulting in the negligent operation of a motor vehicle to a maximum of AUD$1,000. In the event of an insurance claim, the Host Family will be responsible for paying any excess relating to the claim. The Host Family will be liable to pay 100% of any damages if the Au Pair is not listed on the vehicle’s insurance cover.
All AIFS Au Pairs are between 18 and 30 years of age although most Au Pairs are around 18-20 years old when they apply for the program. No matter what age - all AIFS Au Pairs have at least 200 hours of certified and/or referenced childcare experience and they have all been carefully screened and interviewed to ensure that they are mature and well equipped to cope with the demands of the position.
All AIFS Au Pairs must have a minimum of 200 referenced hours of childcare experience. This may include internships in kindergartens, as midwives, children's nurses, camp counsellors, sports coaches, babysitting, tutoring or caring for younger siblings. You can expect a young motivated woman with a genuine interest in children.
AIFS Au Pairs are placed for a maximum of 6 months with one family. To ensure an uninterrupted level of care, many AIFS Host Families choose their next AIFS Au pair before the placement ends. In this way the girls receive a ‘handover' and there is very little disruption to the family. Click here for repeat applications.
Many Families choose to become "Repeat Families" to ensure a continuous level of care for their children. AIFS values your family's support and offers a $100 discount on the program fee when you apply for your next Au Pair. Click here for Repeat Family fees.
We know that having a family is an expensive business and you're right to question why pay for this service. With AIFS you will receive the following when you become an AIFS Host Family:
The AIFS Au Pairs are prepared to work up to 45 hours/week for a weekly stipend of ranging from $180pw to $270pw depending on their childcare expereince and hours. If you require the Au Pair to work additional hours from time to time then this can be arranged in agreement with the Au Pair. The AIFS Au Pairs get paid an additional $7 for every hour over 45 per week or time off in lieu the following week.
Au Pairs hope that they may join most family activities and we encourage all Host Families to invite their Au Pairs to do so. This not only helps the Au Pair to get to know the family and your children, but to learn more about the new surroundings and Australia. We understand that some family activities you may wish to do as a family so that you can spend time together. In this case we suggest that you explain this to the Au Pair. Au Pairs understand this and will appreciate your honesty and look forward to those events that she may join with you and your children.
There is no warranty as to the satisfaction or the compatibility of any particular candidate as an Au Pair for the Host Family but AIFS will make reasonable attempts to resolve any difficulties regarding the placement. First our Community Counsellor will assist you and your Au Pair with advice and mediation on all incurring issues. If AIFS Australia determines that the placement cannot be continued, it will provide assistance that may include placement of another Au Pair with the Host Family. Please click here for the Program's Terms and Conditions.
In the application form the Host Family is asked to draw up a sample schedule to give the Au Pair an idea of what is expected for the placement. The family can also state how often they expect the schedule will change. Nevertheless, flexibility by the Au Pair is the key to a successful placement. The odd hours of babysitting, caring for sick children at home or jumping in to help in case of emergencies should not become a matter of dispute. You may choose to offer some extra money or time off in lieu in return for these favours.
Yes, AIFS Australia can assist with a pre-match situation. Please contact us for further information.
The Au Pairs are fully covered by medical and liability insurance for the duration of their stay with your family, however, if the Au Pair is unfit to work, you will need to find an alternative solution for childcare until the Au Pair feels better and can resume work.
The American Institute for Foreign Study (AIFS) and its family of companies organises cultural exchange programs throughout the world for more than 50,000 students and young people each year. Since our founding in 1964, more than a million people have participated on an AIFS study or working-travel program.
The American Institute for Foreign Study (Australia) Pty Ltd opened in Melbourne in 1999 with the company focusing on the growth of established outbound programs, Camp America and Au Pair in America. In January 2005 AIFS opened its Sydney office and student centre which also serves as the base for AIFS' regional headquarters.
Each year, around between 4000-5000 adventurous young people will participate on an AIFS program to or from Australia. AIFS currently offers young Australians the opportunity to participate on Camp America or Au Pair in America. Our inbound options include Work & Travel, Internship and Au Pair programs attracting more than 3,500 young travellers from over 20 countries. For more information about AIFS in Australia please visit www.aifsaustralia.com. For more information about AIFS around the world please visit www.aifs.com.