I was an au pair in Denmark for 15 months :)Au Pair Stories
I applied to the au-pair program in Republic of Moldova at the age of 27. I was waiting for about 5 months, and when I almost lost the hope to find a host family in Scandinavia, my local agency started the partnership with NIKA Agency, and everything went very fast! In about 2 weeks I was already communicating with my host family in Denmark, and started to feel up the forms for the Danish embassy. We've had a lot of work to do, but we made it, and my lovely host family was waiting for me at the Copenhagen Airport.
Denmark met me a bit sad, with darkness and rainy weather. I was worried that I'll get a depression... But I didn't! The Skype made me close to my family in Moldova, and host family helped me a lot. After just a week in DK they found for me a Foreigners Club, where I continued to go ones a week all my period of stay in Denmark and were I had great time with the sweetest Danish people ever! We lived in the small town Holte, just about 20 km from Copenhagen. The members of the family were the parents and two sweet twins-boys aged 8. The father was working in another country, and he often was not home. But my company all the day was 2 cats and 1 Labrador called Dougie that I loved a lot!
My duties was more the housekeeping (daily cleaning, tidy up, laundry and other) and the care of our domestic animals. I had to help the boys with their homework sometimes, and to walk with them from the school (not so often). I had my own room, with all the facilities, were I had all my privacy. I had a TV in my room, the access to the wireless internet when I wanted and the time and access to the computer (after few months I bought my own).
I had evenings free and week-ends off. I started the evening classes at the School of Danish language after 3 weeks of my stay in Denmark, and where the fun has been started! Classmates from all over the world! New friends, week-ends out together. My host family was paying my monthly ticket for the bus and train to school and back, and that was great, because in Denmark transportation is expensive.
My holidays were on time and I was traveling a lot in Europe. The summer in Denmark was amazing! Warm, sunshine, very green and a lot of BBQ :) I will never forget all the people I've met in Denmark, and I keep in touch with all of them.
So, some advices for the girls that wish to apply for the au-pair program:
- Discuss with your host family about your duties and responsibilities before signing the contract. Read the contract very carefully.
- Discuss the school and transportation payment (it’s important).
- Never try to educate the kids, or to indicate the parents how they have to educate them, even if you feel you want to do it sometimes (the European kids are a bit different than in our countries :-). Don't do that. They don't like it. But you always can advise them in a very nice way and on the right time. Be patient. Be helpful.
- Discuss your holiday plans in advance, so that it will match with their plans.
- And the most important: never feel sorry for your choice, enjoy your life and always learn new things. You lose nothing, believe me. You’ll just win.
Good luck and my kindest regards and thanks for NIKA Agency (Denmark) and Rejans Prim (Moldova).
With best wishes, from Parascovia Mihai, 29 years old.