Au Pair Regulations
Created in 1989, the au pair programme is a cultural exchange programme that is regulated by the U.S. Department of State. Guidelines have been set forth to protect the interest of both host families and au pairs and are required to be followed by all programme participants and au pair agencies. Cultural Care submits documentation on a regular basis to the U.S Department of State to support our programme's standard. To legally be an au pair in the USA you must go through a designated sponsor such as Cultural Care Au Pair.
The government regulations Cultural Care Au Pair agrees to follow include:
- Provide au pairs with a minimum of eight hours of training in child development and child safety (at least four of which deal with infant safety)
- Provide au pairs with a minimum of 24 hours of child development instruction before being placed in an American home (at least four of which must relate to children under two years of age)
- Ensure that each host family be assigned to a Local Childcare Consultant (LCC) who lives within a one-hour drive
- Require LCCs to conduct an orientation with each host family and au pair within 14 days of an au pair’s arrival
- Require LCCs to maintain monthly personal contact with host families and host monthly meetings for their au pairs
Guidelines that our host families must adhere to :
- Provide their au pair with a private bedroom, meals and a weekly stipend of US$195.75 (calculated based on federal minimum wage; subject to change) (approximately R8,000 a month).
- Limit their au pair’s working hours to 45 hours per week (no more than 10 hours in one day)
- Limit their au pair’s household responsibilities to those related to care of the children (including meal preparation, laundry and room clean-up)
- Grant their au pair 1.5 days off per week, at least 1 full weekend off each month and 2 weeks of paid vacation
- Arrange for a parent or responsible adult to remain at home with their au pair for the first three days after arrival
- Ensure that another adult is home with their au pair at all times if you have an infant under the age of 3 months
- Contribute up to US$500 toward the cost of their au pair's completion of their educational requirement (approximately R5,500).
- Facilitate transportation for their au pair to attend monthly meetings with their LCC and classes
Member of the International Au Pair Association (IAPA)
Cultural Care Au Pair is a member of the IAPA and has been given a “quality seal of approval” as an au pair programme in the USA. IAPA is a worldwide association and highly regarded in the cultural exchange industry. See www.iapa.org for more information.