This post is slightly delayed as I have already completed the transition from local childcare coordinator/consultant to host parent/au pair childcare advocate. It was thirteen months ago that I assumed the role as LCC for Cultural Care Au Pair. I accepted the position out of my own interest during a time that I was not working outside the home. It gave me a sense of fulfillment and a second focus while caring for my own young children. After 3 years of hosting au pairs, I had become an expert on the US Department of State au pair J-1 visa program. My local networks (being a local myself to Charlottesville) also uniquely qualified me to service this area.
While I enjoyed many aspects of the position, it wasn’t without fault. The best part of the position was getting to know the au pairs and helping them succeed in their own experience in the US and Charlottesville. The worst, in all honesty, was the fact that the position is essentially volunteered and can consume a lot of time, especially during times when a host family and au pair require immediate attention or mediation. I often felt that au pairs and host families assumed this was my only job. This was particularly difficult when I did return to my nursing career in January 2016. I prepared by asking the agency to hire a second LCC to assist me with my group. Like everything, finding another LCC took some time, but a second LCC assumed half my group in March 2016. It was great sharing this role with another LCC. I now had a confidant and my own supporter who came to know the position with similar energy and enthusiasm. Still, I found myself sacrificing time with my own family and career obligations to a point that I was no longer comfortable. I knew I had to complete the transition. As of July 1, 2016, I no longer represent Cultural Care Au Pair as a local childcare consultant for Charlottesville, Va. I will remain a host parent through this agency and continue to blog all things au pair here.