Au Pair Program in Australia - Duties
There are a number of responsibilities and duties that will be expected from you and the host family during your Au Pair stay in Australia.
First of all, if you will be an Au Pair in Australia, the host family will of course provide you during your stay with three meals a day and accommodation, free of charge.
In return you will need to be aware of the daily responsibilities of your job as an Au Pair, since your main task will be to care for your host families child or children. You should approach your duties reliably and conscientiously and ensure that you maintain a respectful relationship between the children as well as with the parents.
The specific expectations that the host family has, when it comes to take care of their children, can vary from each and every host family. This is something that you should discuss before traveling to Australia, to make sure that both parties are on the same page. You will act as a big sister or big brother for the children when you spend time with them so it is highly expected that you will treat the children lovingly and with care so you can bond and build strong relationships with the children.
In particular children between 0-3 need a lot of attention; therefore you must ensure and commit to care for them a lot especially if the parents do not have the time for it. They must be fed, changed and washed, you will take walk with them, play with them, read books and put them to bed etc. Children who are 4-6 years old normally go to childcare during the day so part of your duties could include picking them up and dropping them off, either way your daily routine is directed around the schedule of the children. Kids over 7 are often very independent but will still need to be constantly supervised. If they go to school, you should be able to get them dressed, prepare breakfast and depending on the location, drop them off by car or walk them to school. When they arrive home, it is generally required that you help them with their homework and keep them entertained until dinnertime. Often the host families ask Au Pair to speak in the native language towards the children.
In addition to the required childcare, the Au Pair must perform light household activities such as vacuuming, washing clothes, shopping and general cleaning. You should also be able to prepare snacks and simple meals during and after school. It is recommended that you discuss in advance what the family expects to avoid any confusion or disagreements after you arrive. Working hours are not specified, but within all, a working week of 30-45 hour week is suitable for the Australian Au Pair program. Furthermore, you may be called in one evening per week to babysit.
Apart from all this responsibility and work, you will be exposed to lots of entertainment and travel costs can be paid for with the pocket money you will earn.