Obligations as an Au Pair

Obligations as an Au Pair

Au Pair New Zealand - Obligations as an au pair 2As much as there are rights to protect you when you come to New Zealand as an au pair, you also enter an employment contract, which means that you have obligations towards your host family, who is your employer. Breaching this contract can have legal consequences and it is therefore important that you take your task as an au pair serious and only commit to the programme if you really enjoy working with children, are flexible and have an open-minded approach when it comes to cultural differences.

Your main task as an Au Pair is the care of children. A typical day can start in the morning with waking up the children, help them to get dressed and prepare breakfast and a packed lunch. Often you will do drop offs and pick ups to and from kindergarten/school and after school activities. Whilst the children are at school or in kindergarten, you might be asked to tidy up their toys, clean up the kitchen and organise their rooms. Typical activities in the evening are playing and reading with the children, help with homework or just let them have a good time. Doing laundry and preparing dinner can also be part of your duties. Every family is different and tasks can vary.

As you will be part of a family, it is important that you show an interest in them by joining for meals, activities and outings and that you communicate both to us and your host family whenever you feel uncomfortable with something. It is also important to recognise when the family wants to have some time by themselves, just as you might feel the same need at times.

When you come to New Zealand as an au pair, you have to leave your expectations behind, as many things will be different than what you are used to: food, housing, mentality, culture and so on. Accepting these differences will help you integrate in your host family and your New Zealand life.

Au Pair New Zealand - Obligations as an au pairChildren are vulnerable and often copy what adults do. As an au pair you will be their role model and it is therefore important to consider a few things:

Child safety is an absolute priority and if you are uncertain about what to do, you should call your host family for instructions or our emergency number on 04 889 23 17.

You will also have to be patience with the children, even if they make a situation impossible for you. Inappropriate language is not accepted and smacking is illegal. It is also prohibited to smoke in the area of the children or in the house.

You spare time is yours to use and you can choose to attend a language course, join a sport club, catch up with other au pairs and so on. Keep in mind though, that you have to inform your family when you go out and that you need to ask for permission if you want to bring over friends. If you are not certain about something, it is better to ask one time too much, than not asking at all.