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Cultural Care Au PairA very unpleasant experience

1
D Review updated:

We have had the most unpleasant experiences with CCAP. It is true that most of these au pairs have a vision of coming to the U.S. to travel and have an easy job. Obviously they are misled and we know now that we were misled. These au pairs tell you they can drive, etc. and when they get here, they can't. After you have shelled out 7 grand for this au pair to be here you find that you have to look for a new one. It was more of a pain in the butt than helpful. I was hoping to start back to work, but found that I could not leave my children all day with this au pair. She did not interact, she sat around and watched Judge Judy and other court shows all day. It was a mess! Save your money and do something different.

Responses

  • L
      Sep 22, 2009

    As an LCC, I have asked my au pair group if they felt that they were in any way tricked into becoming an au pair. They have all said that they were not and that they knew what they were getting into. Many are already teachers and nurses and are grateful to help a family in exchange of fulfilling their dream of living in Amercia and learning American languare/culture. My group loves their host families and their children and dread the day the have to say "goodbye" to them. The host families have complete control over which au pair they pick for their families. (A lot of other LCCs are host moms because they love the program.)

    0 Votes
  • C
      Sep 30, 2009

    LCC_4_CCAP, you must have a very special group, the one that makes the exception to the Cultural Care rule. Families DON'T have complete control over what they pick for their family, because those applications are filled with fake referrals and lies, and because after they are stuck with this company they have no choice to either loose their jobs and/or money or to go with whatever au pair they can get on time. In my case it took 3 months to get a replacement for a mentally challenged au pair (who by the way had a "clean" application, although she was mentally treated at the school where Cultural Care recruited her). The best I was able to get after a frustrating 3 month matching process was someone who neglected my baby. I wouldn't call that "complete control".

    0 Votes
  • L
      Nov 07, 2009

    Maybe you shouldn't go so cheap next time, especially when it comes to the most precious things in your life, your children (I hope). You get what you paid for.
    Bringing these girls from other countries and slaving them into hard work, you got to try to take a look from their point of view, I supposed you wouldn't take care of someone else's children for $3 /hour, would you?

    The point is, most of this girls come here with good intentions and want to do their best, but when overworking, having no rights, being humiliated, not having privacy and still not being normally paid, it is pretty tough. Also, you should have mentioned that Au Pairs spend big bucks to be part of the program as well and most of them come from good families, and had great education and are honest and loving. Not saying all of them are.

    I used to be an Au Pair many years ago. I came from a pretty wealthy family, both of my parents are Doctors, I was highly educated and grew up with with Nannies and Maids, whom I love very much. I believe that most of the host families think they are helping out "poor" girls from 3rd world countries, but in fact, I believe we are the ones helping out. Money was never the reason why i chose to be an Au Pair. I have always loved children and found the Au Pair program to be a great opportunity for me to do what i loved and still be able to be fluent in English ( language I was studying for the past 10 years) and experience the of living in another country.
    The Au Pair Agency made it very appealing and an amazing opportunity, very different from the reality I lived for 7 months.
    I am from Brazil and I came here with all the love in my heart, and I took care of two beautiful children whom I was totally devoted to and did my best, I overworked, I worked about 60 hours/week, would start super early in the morning and stay until dinner time, yet I was not invited for dinner, I had no breaks and kids wouldn't take naps, the older girl would go to school for part of the day the 3 ear old stayed with me . The host family started to abuse on my generosity, telling me to do other things it wasn't part of my duties, like, their laundry, clean the dog's poops in the back yard (I am not kidding). The parents would rarely spend time with the kids, they never actually realized how important I was in their kid's life, yet would always treat me super bad in front of them. I think it was a way to deposit their anger in someone that was their subordinate.
    Anyway, I wet through hell with this host family, and the only thing that held me there for so long was my love and compassion for those poor kids, we really loved each other, and was the hardest thing for me to leave them. I treated them with so much love and respect, yet didn't get any back from their parents. I feel so stupid today, I should have said something, but do recognize I did not have much rights and I was super young and still super polite.
    I should mention I ran away from the au pair program, with the help of a mother who lived nearby and I had met in through a friend who is a Nanny, she knew me for while then and I would work for her once in a while, when family was away or weekend nights, so I could make some real money, cuz by that time I was totally independent from my family in Brazil, I wanted to be independent. I worked for them without my host family knowing. She would pay me full price of what a Nanny gets paid in the San Francisco Bay Area and knew all I was going through, one day she gave me her car keys and said: "go there, take all your belongings and move in with us for as long as you want and need".
    That was my redemption day, and It's been almost 5 years.
    Now I live in San Francisco with my husband, who is an American, I get paid $20/hour to take care of one adorable baby and I still work once a week for that precious family that helped me out of the situation, caring for now 10 year old girl and a 6 year old boy, whom I've watched blossom and become terrific people to this world. I have always found great families to work for since then, that appreciate who I am and what I do.
    I still work hard but it is just much better.
    *** Also I would like to mention that there are amazing host families, I had Au Pair friends that had exceptional host families, that maybe couldn't afford to have them out of the program but would definitely treat them with so much respect and appreciation.
    So I believe it is up to you to make that great experience with your Au Pair, just remember that is the person who will be taking care of your little ones, treat them as you would like to be treated. Be loving and kind to the person who is helping raise your children, I'm sure that you'll get the best in return!

    0 Votes
  • M
      Apr 28, 2010

    I went through the same thing ..I went thr 3 aupairs from cultural care .The last one was from australia - she said she loved kids she came here cause she was having an affair with a man in long Island and she stold from our family !!!

    horrid !!

    MC

    +1 Votes
  • R
      Nov 16, 2010

    Same experience here...3 aupairs, all lied about their child care expereince and driving skil. Did not interact much with our child. The Program Director, Angie, is terrible to deal with. I would not recommend this program to anyone.

    0 Votes

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