Cultural Care Au PairAwful experience

T

This agency is a sham operation. They specialize in trafficking young international women as au pairs and placing them in U.S. homes for childcare. They are not trained or experienced to do so. Their applications are falsified and references are from family members, not real childcare refs. They charge large amounts of money to the host family and the au pair for this "service". Once the au pair arrives in the family's home, the agency "goes dark" when you contact them about a problem. You won't get a call or helpful response from the local personnel, Boston office, etc. They put children at risk of neglectful childcare, the au pairs in inappropriate situations with minimal English and the family's are left to pay the high price of no service when it all goes wrong. This agency only responds when a State Dept rule is broken or a lawsuit is filed. They should be shut down. They are the same agency that placed Louise Woodward, the Boston au pair, on trial for shaking an infant who died in her care. They changed their name after this court case from EF Educ to Cultural Care Au Pair.

Responses

  • Ke
    Ke3 Sep 19, 2016

    100% agree. My first aupair came enjoyed her vacation In new York in my house. She then wanted to go home. I was left.with no one to watch my child. My next aupair paid no attention to my son sat on tinder looking for boys. Sending pictures of my son and my home and my address to complete strangers on tinder. While my son put holes in my wall. Gave him candy instead of food. They have no screening process. They are unfit .The next day she slammed my son's arm in a door. I told her to pack up we are done. The next call I got was from cultural care. He first words was how is your aupair. Why is it not about the child? Oh that's right this is a trafficking Agency and travel agency. They care more about the aupairs then your child. I have emailed the vp Natalie jordan who had ignored my emails. As well as the president who has ignored them as well. Maybe the will respond when i take legal action for damages due to negligence.

    1 Votes
  • Po
    pobo Jul 08, 2016
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Cultural Care is an agency that only looks at the money not the people involved.
    They provide terrible training or no training, no screening, they ask their applicants to lie to make their application look good.
    They lack of childcare experience and corporate people are just corrupted.
    Stay away

    2 Votes
  • De
    desertrose123 Jun 08, 2016

    I was an Au Pair with Cultural Care in Connecticut for 2 years (with 1 year extension), and my experience was mixed, but leaning towards negative.
    I ended up staying as an international student, and eventually became a permanent resident, as nothing was waiting for me in my home country.
    In retrospective, I think the experience overall was one of the most teaching experiences of my life.
    First of all, I applied for the program in the hopes that I will get to leave my country and maybe establish myself somewhere where there more opportunities for me. This is the motivation of many of the girls coming from poor countries. As an Eastern European who grew up and came of age surrounded by poverty, despair, violence and corruption, this was a great way for me to escape, even if it was for only 1-2 years. The idea of living and earning my keep in a happy family, while also earning some pocket money, going to college and having opportunities to travel, seems like a great deal for someone in these circumstances. However, looking back, there are a few things that I wish I could tell my previous host families upon my departure:
    1. The degree of cultural difference : many American families need to realise that all good au pairs from different countries also come from different cultures. If you and your family don't want to find, and deal with your wide cultural differences, or simply aren't that open or interested, perhaps choose someone from a Western country for example such as Scandinavian, EU, etc. if your heritage is such.. Culture should play a crucial role in the matching process, and if you, as a family, don't have the time, nor energy to invest in ironing out differences in understanding of rules, childcare, communication and guidance, the actual "cultural exchange", in short, please choose someone closer to your own culture for a better match.
    2. Please be aware that many of us coming from poor countries/circumstances, have paid what feels like A LOT of money to be in this program, and we hope to make that money back, because we probably borrowed it from relatives and friends, but also we hope to make some money to send to our family, if at all possible. We understand that the pocket money we make isn't really an "income" for you, but it is for some of us, so we WILL accept extra hours, but PLEASE pay a fair rate. We might be poor, but we do understand the value of work in your country, and when you pay us $3 /h or less for extra time, we know we aren't paid fairly, but since we live with you, we don't feel safe expressing discontent. So we will resent you.
    3. Living where we work is very hard, so please acknowledge this, and make a small effort to respect our space and privacy, as well as our time off. We are more than happy to be "part of the family", but most of the time this is just an excuse for you to get us to work more, for free.We will accept this too, because we live with you, and we don't really have any leverage, but use your best judgement and be a human.
    4. We are very homesick and very lonely. Please allow us to communicate with our families, and be aware of the timezone differences. If you think I shouldn't be on the phone during the day, while your children are in school, beacuse you think I should be doing housework, maybe think of working out a time when talking to my family works for me and you. Again, we won't bother you with this, because we live with you, and since we have nowhere else to go, we won't jeopardize our situation.
    5. We are very resentful: of your power over us, your "wealth", your big house, your happiness, all your opportunities, and all your success- because we are homesick, poor and struggling to adapt (cultural difference) or learn the language (english). If you arent ready to treat an au pair with kindness, goodwill and generosity, perhaps chose to hire a paid nanny or choose an Au pair that comes from different circumstances.
    6. Please don't participate in this program just to get "cheaper" childcare. This is unethical.
    7. We often don't agree with how you discipline your children (cultural difference), and maybe you should take your time explaining to us your approach, and why you think it's good, and encourage discussion, and be prepared to hear things that seem offensive to you. This too goes under the cultural differences.

    I hope this honest testimony helps other families to have a successful au pair match. This isn't, by any means, fair to you either, but this is the reality that I was faced with, and I hope to offer helpful insight.
    I didn't have the greatest experience with Cultural care itself, but I found one of the LCCs to be a very nice and involved lady. As for the company, it was upsetting for me when they didn't extend my medical insurance for the second year, and I was sent away from a doctor's office, because the policy they gave me was not valid.

    2 Votes
  • Mo
    MomyNY Aug 22, 2015
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Please do yourself a favor and do the research on this horrific agency. From your local coordinator to the director of the east coast, the worst customer service of any company. Read all reviews thoroughly, I wish I had, they are all true. I did not do enough due diligence, I only hope you will prior to engaging in any business with this company. I filed complaints with the company about the au pair (lack of interest in the children, unsafe circumstances, taking time off when she deemed appropriate), they did NOTHING except remove her, send her to another home to get more money for ccap, refuse to provide a replacement, even though I found a suitable one and then keep the rest of the fees without providing services. It is called robbery, no contract condones this type of business and I am astonished that the agency is still in business, If I could they would have 0 stars, worse than that and this agency provides child care, there are zero regulations in this industry so please use a reputable one. I even asked them not to put my information on anything associated with this au pair's next "move" they put my full information against my instructions, which I am pretty sure is also illegal, posting my personal information against my advice not to online or otherwise; they were trying to make it seem as though she weren''t half as bad as the agency knew, if you could only see the look on the face of the local coordinator in my home at the horrible performance of this ap you would be horrified at this agency, then did they send her home??? nope to another family, disgraceful and horrible. Now you know why they had to change their name and why horrible things have happened under their "care." Choose carefully, they DO NOT CARE.

    0 Votes
  • Co
    Cocopuffy Apr 23, 2015

    Can anyone help with a contact for placing a complaint with the Department of State, the website www.state.gov does not provide anywhere to place a complaint
    I have the most horrendous experience. The Au Pair ran up the phone she insisted me getting her, with zodiac and psychic readings. One weekend she stole a ton of my good jewelry after ransacking my close, she even stole the brass finiials from the hinges on the door. I am sure to pawn and took off into the night. Cultural Care did NOTHING. After this experience, I asked to be excused from the program. They stole 1/2 of my money. I disputed it with my credit card company and to no avail. They are the proud owners of over $3000.00.
    DO NOT USE CULTURAL CARE!!

    1 Votes
  • Cc
    CCAP-hater Feb 08, 2015

    In September 2014 my husband I entered into a contract with Cultural Care Au Pair. We were to pay them $7995.00 for coordinating an au pair to live with our family. In exchange for childcare (we provide a stipend of $195.00 per week not to exceed 45 hours per week, ) we provide room, board, and other items. We contracted for an au pair, Viktoria Schaeffer 19 y/o from Austria to arrive to our home November 22, 2014. When we picked her up from the training school Viktoria reported she had a terrible infection in her toe and needed medical attention. She indicated to us and the physician we took her to that she had this infection for nearly a month prior to travel. We reported this to the agency and they were dismissive of this information. The agreement states the au pair would be in good health when she arrives. Viktoria was put on a 4-6 week cycle of clindamicin. We provided the au pair agency with documentation that the infection came with her from Austria. We also told the agency we were concerned she lied to them. On or about December 5 we reported to the agency that Viktoria wanted to terminate her agreement with us and preferred to leave the United States. We scheduled an exit meeting. After such meeting Viktoria asked if she could stay on with us and try to acclimate to the USA and being an au pair. We agreed. On or about December 18, 2015 Kristen Tanner a customer service representative offered my family and I a full refund to leave the agency. Kristen Tanner asked for medical information regarding my son's health (I disclosed my son had a low white blood cell count). Kristen Tanner told me she wanted Cultural Care's medical consultant to review my some medical diagnosis. I asked her for a HIPPA release. She failed to offer one. I requested the name of the medical consultant's name and she failed to provide. She then told me if I wanted to move forward she would nee my son's medical information. I asked her for Cultural Care's HIPPA form and explained exchanging my son's medical information without a release was in violation of HIPPA laws. She said again in order to move forward she would need that information. Kristen also said the company's policy changed. When I asked when the policy changed (we had an au pair contracted through Cultural Care Au Pair from [protected] and this information was never requested) she said again, in order to move forward we need the info. She never provided a HIPPA form. On January 12, 2015 Viktoria on her time off damaged our vehicle. We provided her with the invoice for $874.43 and she never once contested her responsibility. On January 13 Viktoria informed our family she would be returning to Austria for good on February 15, 2015. She indicated she purchased her own ticket. I informed the agency immediately that Viktoria had made these arrangements outside of what our contract calls for. There is supposed to be an exit meeting and mediation. Kristen Tanner said she tried to reach Viktoria and Viktoria had not responded to her emails. Viktoria then broke the iPhone we provided her with. She dropped it in a toilet. We told Viktoria she was responsible for this as well. The cost of the iPhone 5c is $447.00 before tax. We explained that she was financially responsible for the phone. On January 29, 2015 Viktoria left our home without informing us she had no plans on returning. We contacted the agency and they said Viktoria was not paid for 3 weeks, which would total $600.00. We deny that claim. Every week Viktoria receives an email from the agency asking if she was paid her stipend and if she worked no more than 45 hours. SHE NEVER ONCE RESPONDED TO THESE EMAILS indicating she was not paid in full. We told Kristen Tanner that Viktoria received half her stipend ($100.00). Kristen asked for receipts. We did not have any recipes for her stipend and Viktoria never set up a bank account so cash was the only way to pay her. We paid her half stipend so she would have spending money and at the same time begin satisfying her financial obligations to us to pay for the car damage and phone. The following is the letter we sent to Kristen Tanner via email on Wednesday February 4, 2015: Kristen, In regard to our telephone call, Saturday January 31 2015 I am awaiting a full refund from Cultural Care Au Pair. Please remit my full refund from your agency by cheque forwarded to my home address 264 Mill Road, Stamford CT 06903. When Viktoria arrived to our home in November she came with a serious Staph infection in her toe which my husband and I coordinated care for. She was placed on a 6 week cycle of clindamycin. Although she told you she acquired this infection from the training school, you are in receipt of my email from her stepmom, Andrea Brunner in Austria, indicating this infection was present from a month before travel and was not attended to properly. Viktoria’s indication of acquiring the infection at the training school was as manipulative as it was dishonest. She was not with my family for more than 3 days and her dysregualted emotions overcame her as you may recall with a series of emotional outbursts requesting to rematch and then requesting to stay. This followed for three weeks until we agreed for her to stay. Two and a half weeks after that decision Viktoria booked her own flight home to Austria without informing me of her plans to leave on Feb 15, 2015 nor informing the agency. Her departure and how long she was staying was unilateral. I agreed to have her stay working until Feb 3 as I indicated in one of my previous emails. On January 12, 2015 Viktoria ran over a boulder in my driveway and the damage was recorded as $874.43 by a auto body vendor. The damage to our vehicle occurred on Viktoria’s time off. She did not report the accident to us until the evening when we returned from work. Had the accident happened during her work time with my children in the car, she did not follow any reasonable protocol informing us when it happened. As well, my children do not report being in the car when this accident happened. Viktoria was aware of our intentions to hold her financially accountable for this and never once contested her responsibility. Viktoria dropped her iPhone in a toilet, and again she was made aware she was to be financially accountable for this damage. The phone is an iPhone 5c with retail value of $$449.00 (not including tax). She was paid $100.00 for three weeks and $200.00 on Friday, January 30, 2015. She did not work her full 45 hours this week before she departed but was paid in full with extra. You have received the invoice for the damage to the car as well as a statement of cost from AT&T for a total of $449.00 + $29.62 (Stamford tax), + $874.43 (-$374.43 with the remainder as her contracted contribution) + $100.00 in salary she did not earn for this past week totals ($1073.62 - $300 for her partial stipend) $773.62 due back to my Husband and I. Viktoria lied about where she was going Friday evening and clearly had been sneaking her belongings out of my home while my husband and I were at work. Did it occur to you that she left to avoid satisfying her financial obligations? I have been in touch with the Stamford police department and they have a police report acknowledging she left my home with the iPhone she did not pay for, they have record of the accident damage she has not cured, they saw how she left our home (in squalor) and they are aware she collected a full salary for not a full week of work. Additionally, she clogged the plumbing in the bathroom sink and I will forward you the cost from our plumber. A warrant for her is pending. It is more than difficult to hear she was afraid of us when she was using a gym membership we paid for, taking extra money from us for Starbucks, lunch, and manicures. She used our car and never put gas into the tank to replenish what she used. She left with many gifts of clothing, cosmetics, and personal items we gave her. She didn’t seem so afraid while she was enjoying our gifts and resources. Her indication to you she was afraid and that she was not paid is slanderous. As your agent, you should caution Viktoria that slanderous and libelous communications will be acted upon swiftly and effectively. I have copied my family attorney, Jonathon Hoffman in this thread so he may be posted on how we proceed and will intervene if and when it becomes necessary. Honest people do not leave in the middle of the night under the guise of a lie. I stand strongly by what I have communicated to you and am disappointed that my husband and I need to qualify ourselves yet again to satisfy the “neutral” standards of your company. We are well respected members of our community, local and professional. Questioning our character by way of conduct, truth, or any payment is not acceptable. Please forward our full refund of $3000.00 along with the outstanding amount of $773.62 that which Viktoria owes us immediately so we may sever our ties. Best, Francesca & Ernesto D'Onofrio She responded by phone two days later. She said we were in bad standing with the department of state for not paying our au pair. She said she did not believe us and did not believe the au pair. She would be using our funds given to Cultural Care to pay Viktoria or us. I asked who would be keeping my money she said Cultural Care. I asked for matrix of how my program fees broke down and she said she would not provide that. She was beyond rude with me during our call. She would not give any explanation of how much money we would be owed by way of retroactive program fees. She did not indicate how our money had been used and refused to do so. I suggested that what Viktoria claims to have been unpaid was much less than what we believe we were owed in a refund and again she reused to explain the matrix of any calculation. We were treated so poorly and more than unfairly. The agency took our money and is not profiting. Viktoria cannot offer any proof that she was unpaid. Again I convey she had every opportunity to tell anyone at the agency poor to her leaving that she had not been paid. This has been a terrible experience

    0 Votes
  • Mi
    Michigan2015 Jan 29, 2015

    Had Au Pair quit after 8 weeks. They couldn't provide replacement in timely fashion since it was the holidays. Of course they said "You should always have a back-up plan". That is why we used this service!!! She also made it sound as I should have been able to know the Au pair was going to leave premature to go back to college, as I should have asked that in the interview. I couldn't believe it somehow came back on me. Not sure what they actually do. Not to mention it is like pulling teeth for anyone to even call you back. So make sure you have plenty of time to be persistent.
    So even though the Au pair left after 8 weeks they would not reimburse 40% of the upfront program fees. Pathetic. Of course they come back as they are not their employee's blah blah blah, but at the end of the day they could care less as they have your $$ and you won't see it again. After a little more research found out that the au pairs have to pay a hefty fee to even get in their system ~$1500 and then they get less than $200 per week. For 45 hours per week that is below minimum wage, pretty sad and almost wouldn't sound like being legal, but it is.

    So after a scramble to find a replacement once she said they didn't want to put just a "Warm Body" in my home when she was referring to their candidate pool of Au Pairs I knew I was done. Anyone to think of people in that manner, especially since that is the only way it makes their company $$, very sad.

    Other companies out there, I would recommend going to them first.

    0 Votes
  • Cc
    Cc employee Nov 06, 2014

    I worked for Cc for several years and with the good comes the ad but I believe this is with every agency or company.
    There is no proper way to screen everyone thoroughly because then the cost would sky rocket. Yes there are some lousy Ap and yes there are some bad families whose expectations go way beyond wht an P is supposed to do.
    The worst part and I have to agree with what some former employee have said and has nothing to do with being fired or else is the fact that they do not want Lcc or Pd to be open and upfront with the families because this could potentially back fire into a lawsuit .
    I have advised Cc of bad families and bad Ap and I was told basically keep it to yourself instead of great job for being objective. My point you the host family have to invest time with the screening process, ask as many question as possible, go with extension Ap and talk to your Lcc some out there work really hard to provide a gret experience for both

    0 Votes
  • Kc
    KC2681 Apr 08, 2014
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Hi! I hope someone can help me to know what to do. My cousin is an eu pair for a family who is treating her very bad. The host mom yells at her for minimal mistakes she makes and yesterday I got a message from my cousin that this woman yelled at her very bad and told her that she can deport her. And today my cousin called to her coordinator and it looks like this person is in favor of the host family. I would like to know what the best options are for my cousin, she cannot come back to our country because she has to pay the money invested in this program, but she wants to be respected and not being humiliated as she is in this moment. She has been with this family only for two weeks and she is working more hours than the contract says and they are not respecting even the schedule she has. We really need a good advice to know what to do and how to deal with this horrific situation. Please someone who has had a situation like this can tell me what our options are. Thank you!

    0 Votes
  • Dc
    dchinch Mar 11, 2014

    I had a horrific experience with Cultural Care. They placed a young woman in my home who told my young children there was no santa clause, made my kids eat food she dropped on the floor and had my kids sit doing nothing on the stairs while she hung out in her room. She frightened my kids not to tell me. Now anyone could get unlucky with an au pair, but when i told Cultural Care, they ACTUALLY PLACED HER WITH ANOTHER FAMILY. Then they tried to dump another au pair on me that a family didn't want. I obviously passed. I got very little money back but no way would i let them place another reject in my home. All in all terrible.

    0 Votes
  • Ka
    Kati1508 Nov 01, 2013
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Hi all together, I am shocked about all the negative experiences but I am also sure that just a big company also has good matches/ families/ aupairs. I am from germany and I was an aupair in 2005 and I had bad and good experiences. First of all both parts have to understand their job and duties. For me it was very difficult in the beginning when i arrived. I was willing to learn but its important that the family had rules and let the au pair know what they expect. Always keep in mind that there are family and au pair from two total different cultures! After i talked to my host family, we made things work and had a great year together. they treated me like a family member and even took me with them on vacation. I took my work very serious and the 2 kids became very close to me! I am still im touch with them after 8 years. You cant expect as a family to get an aupair who will be perfect from the beginning. its a process of talking, teaching, rules and growing together! I had many aupair friends, most of them from germany and sweden, and all of them loved their family and had a great year!

    0 Votes
  • Ca
    CApZ Mar 03, 2013
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    I read a lot of complaints about the Au Pairs, but I would like to know more about how this young girls are being protected against being mistreated or abused by their host families.
    My niece is finishing high-school and trying to figure out what she wants to do with her life and she told me about this program which is why I am looking into this.
    We Americans like to complain more that other cultures. We want everything to be perfect, inexpensive and we like to sue for anything. (Walmart mentality). These young girls are being paid very little for their services. I've read reviews of men coming on to these girls and other families expecting them to be slaves 24/7.
    If you are a Au Pair, could you post your experience? Thank you!

    0 Votes
  • To
    Todd Mattingly Jan 18, 2013

    Hello! I am Todd Mattingly. I too have had a bad expereince with Cultural Care and I wanted to share with you that the State Department is involved and if you like to contact them, they would like to hear from you about your expereince. Please contact me for the Agents Contact information, please. Thanks, Todd Mattingly [protected] or [email protected])

    0 Votes
  • Ex
    Ex-Au-Pair Jan 16, 2013

    I personally had a great experience with Cultural Care Au Pair and stayed with a wonderful family in the US. We are still great friends today. I do however have a problem with some of their practices. For example, I agree that they don't provide support to the Au Pairs once they are placed with a family. My host mother was our Local Child-care Coordinator. Now whilst she is a lovely person, this presents a massive conflict of interest in that the LCC is supposed to be non-biased and available to Au Pairs to talk to if they are having problems with their host family. If I had any issues with my host family, I was disadvantaged because my host-mother was my LCC, and I could not speak to her without her bias being introduced into the discussion. No matter how open-minded we would like to see ourselves, it is impossible to not allow ourselves to be biased when the persons actions in question are our own, thus this is extremely unethical practice. I noticed another host-parent, Rob Cota, above has said that they are now the LCC's for their area, so it looks as though Cultural Care Au Pair are still implementing this unethical "support" service, as a host-parent is more likely to be sympathetic to other host families rather than the Au Pair, and it is usually not intentional, it is however, inescapable, hence why they should be using unbiased parties who are not associated with the company in any other way.

    Due to seeing some of my Au Pair friends in the USA treated terribly, like slaves really, working 45+ hours per week for $140 per week, that is $3.11/hour, and that is actually the legal payment for Au Pairs which is the worst part. I realise the families provide room and board, but the provisions are that the Au Pair is supposed to have her/his own room and private bathroom, which was often not the case with families I met in this program. No-one checks this, so families can provide false information. The family is also supposed to provide food for the Au Pair. I knew some Au Pairs who were told they had to buy their own food out of their own money. In other cases the family would only let them eat the food that they had purchased for their family, even if the Au Pair had a specific dietary requirement like Coeliac disease or a food allergy. I now run a successful independent support group for Au Pairs in Australia.

    Some Au Pairs were placed in remote areas with no access to transport, effectively making them prisoners in their host families houses, and one friend was prevented from using their phone to call her family (not even with a phone card) and then accused of stealing and sent home the next day. Strangely enough their next Au Pair was also accused of stealing.

    There are always going to be bad Au Pairs and bad host families. It is up to the agency to provide adequate support and proper checks to ensure the safety of both parties. I think Cultural Care fails in this capacity. I was lucky and had a good experience, but most of the other Au Pairs I met had terrible experiences.

    0 Votes
  • Li
    Livingthe Dec 13, 2012

    Okay, I didn't read all of the posts, too many!
    I am an au pair. Thank good I got a good family, and I am SO happy about it, because it is rare. It is hard sometimes because we are so different but I get though it.
    Anyway, CC does promise a lot to us before we leave. They say that if we ever have a problem we have a LCC to talk to. If he/she isn't available there is Boston that we can talk to and the CC staff from our home country but when we get here we are dropped on bare feet and there's no one to hold our hands if we need one. I was afraid how it would be when I came to my new family, if I was going to like them, if I would go to rematch etc. CC told me not to worry because rematches were rare.. Yeah right. Out of 10 au pairs in my area, 4 went into rematch and out of the 4 girls 2 didn't find a new family, because CC matched them with 2 families in 3 weeks.. One girls who was in my area when I just arrived had a crappy family and was treated like ###, she wasn't one of the quite once and spoke against her host family and left them, because of that she got sent home but her host family got a new au pair because all CC is thinking about is money and the families pay a lot. 8 out of 10 au pairs are unhappy, most of them can manage to stay for a year because the only thing they are waiting for every weekend is the weekend when they can go out with their friends. I have a friend here who doesn't get food, she doesn't have a car and she lives far away from everything. She does have a bike, but it's not really clever to drive on the bike in the dark now in the wintertime. She actually got run over by a car 1 month ago (nothing extreme happened though). So I usually drive her if she wants to go somewhere. She works way to long hours, but CC don't give a s**t. Even though they say before we come 10 hours a day, no more. Nope, not true either.. All their rules get flushed down the toilet once they have their money!!

    1 Votes
  • Ka
    Kasia_ Dec 08, 2012
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Hi, my name is Kasia and I'm from Poland.
    Currently I'm before making a choice of going to States as an au pair in October next year - 2013. The company I want to go with is Called Cultural Care Au Pair. So far I've considered it to be a great choice since I participated in their meeting where they told us everything about going with them. But of course, I took a look what are the opinions about CCAP, and what I've found here is really shocking for me. Not everything is perfect, never will be. There will always be some problems. But is it really that bad? Does the company really treat girls objectively and in case of problems, doesn't help?
    Can somebody recommend me a company I can go with? Which one is better, CCAP or AP in America? I would be really grateful if anybody could help me with making a choice. It's my very first time I need to cope with this kind of matter and I wouldn't like to make a significant mistake. Cause at the end of the day, you are more experienced in that than I am. Thank you in advance, greetings from Poland

    0 Votes
  • Co
    ConcernedMom2 Oct 29, 2012
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    RUN AWAY from this agency. After three "au pairs" who were supposedly screened, we realized all three had lied on their applications and caused us immense grief. When one disappeared for an entire day, the police were involved and highly suggested we get rid of her. We stayed with it because we were financially locked in with no other option. The company forces you to keep dangerous, wayward, irresponsible young girls in your home. They are promised a dream life in the US with extra pay, keys to your car, and free reign of your home. They want to bring in guests whom they will meet at the mall, dance clubs, etc. When you try to enforce rules, you are met with trouble from the au pair and the company. The company will NOT help you, take your money, and leave you stranded. When all else fails, they will blame you, the small size of your home and accuse you of terrible things as you sit with your small child wondering what to do. Cultural Care caused serious stress in my home until we decided to just eat the financial burden and go with a local daycare. It was the best decision. Having used nanny cams, I'd rather day care than neglect, strange men in my home, au pairs napping on the job, my child choking during feedings, sitting on a cell phone talking/texting while my child is ignored, and countless other crimes. PARENTS wake up--look what happened in NYC last week with a domestic nanny. This is much RISKIER!

    1 Votes
  • Au
    Aupair in Extension Oct 05, 2012
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    a verified customer
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    To Berylfiever:
    I'm the formal Aupair in Extension who wrote a review a little while ago, and i'm actually very glad to get a feedback. I don't think many people read reviews on Complaints Board, but it's important to keep it going and updated for people who do read it.
    So at the time when i was writing original review i was in a matching process. I didn't comment on how it ended up, but i'm going to do it now, in case anyone is wondering.
    So i ended up with the family #17. Yup, it took 5 months to match me with a 'right' family. They seemed like a nice family, living in Upper East Side, on Manhattan, NYC, with 3 children (2, 3 and 7 years). However, i will not reveal any more information about this particular family. I lived with them for 7 weeks before i decided i have had enough, and i moved out.
    They ended up being different than what they wrote in their application. They had house-cleaning lady to come 4 days a week for half day, who not only did all the cleaning, but also family cooking! There was a full time hired nanny, 5 days a week, 8hrs/day. Mother was a stay at home. And then there was me.
    Mother promised i would never be let alone with all 3 kids at the time. I had no issues taking control over 3 kids and their activities, however, it ended up being impossible. So there was nanny, maid, mother and me, taking care of 3 children!!! Mother was overprotective of her kids, i was never allowed to leave a child unattended even in their own house (to get water or use bathroom). I was constantly watched over by 1 or 2 other people, i felt like aupair position in their home meant 'slave' and i had no sole decisions about when and what to do.
    We have had several issues with the family, which we tried to work out as the days went by. Unfortunately, after 7 weeks i decided to leave all together. I couldn't bear the constant stress and work over load. During my last 2 weeks with the family i ended up working 79 and 81hrs/week. It was way beyond to what we initially agreed upon. Both them and I knew that aupair is not supposed to be working more than 45 hrs/week.
    I was told, they i might not be able to find a rematch within 2 weeks, since not that many families around NY are in need of aupair. And i was aware of the fact that matching process with Cultural Care is very long, since i went into extension and it took 5 months to be matched.
    So i bought my one way tickets from NYC back to my home country. I was very sad myself for not giving them or another family one more chance, but i was at my lowest low (both physically and emotionally) and i couldnt take another disappointment.
    I have had a life changing experience as aupair. I love interacting with another cultures. Currently i'm residing in Canada on working visa and having time of my life being here.
    Host an aupair is a great opportunity to learn more about different cultures, and if lucky, 'extend' your family with another member. Other than my NYC experience, i still keep in touch with my previous families and kids, watching them grow over the years.
    The original post was written in order to comment on Cultural Care Business, therefore i will not be discussing why to/or not to work as aupair. I would definitely apply for aupair program again, but with a different company. That's it.

    1 Votes
  • Be
    berylfiever Oct 05, 2012
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    I am a Local Childcare Coordinator working for Cultural Care Au Pair for more than three years, and have had strong positive response from my families. I started this job in 2009, when I moved back from England, because a friend of the family was doing it in her retirement, showed me the back-end support and discussed the skills and time required, and I thought it sounded like enjoyable part-time work in a "people" kind of capacity, playing to many of my strengths (I have had to be the diplomat and mediator, unofficially, in past jobs, for instance). I also have lived abroad a lot and am interested in cultural exchange. The job has had its ups and downs - it is a contractor role and involves some sales as well as service support. It is easy to let time-management get out of control, and this can create problems. However, I have largely had a good experience that is rewarding when I have helped families and au pairs resolve conflicts, engaged in the matching process and helped families work out whether the au pair program is a good option for them (this is not always the case, and the company truly expects those people in my role to screen and inform potential families - any au pair agency wants customer retention, and successful program years, and this is a key element to maximizing those two outcomes). I see flaws with the au pair program overall and have seen frustrations from both families and au pairs, but I see it as fundamentally a cool program - nothing like "human trafficking", for sure - but that operates in a very personal, human sphere and thus has a lot of room for extremes of negative - and positive - experience. As to the LCC role, I have had some concern that in the past two years there has been a training shift, and I sense there is a higher turnover in this contract position at the moment. I'm not sure. But I have liked working for the company overall, including that I have been impressed by the warmth, commitment, intelligence and thoroughness I've seen in ALL of the executives who address and train us at conferences - most of whom are host families themselves - and I am actually trying to take a more active role in the national community of LCCs as part of MY concern that this element of the program be as strong as possible. I'm really sorry to the family that had terrible experience with your LCC(s), I know it happens. I think if you have a poor impression of an LCC upon your family interview, it's only fair to say you look to other agencies or childcare solutions, because this person will be the one calling you monthly and checking in with your au pair, and managing mediation or other difficult situations. I think Cultural Care - and any au pair agency - NEED to have this kind of feedback to make their field service representatives the best team possible. To the au pair discussing extension and matching, I hear you. I had never thought of this much, till recently, when my au pairs started to complain (a couple who had to rematch). The company's matching process is presented to US as unique, and a benefit - to families. We are happy to be able to tell our families that they never will be in a position of "competing" with multiple families for the interest of the same au pair. But I had not really given attention to the fact that this means, of course, that au pairs face a constricted process. This may well create problems of au pairs leaping too quickly on matches, since they're only seeing one at a time. I DO NOT believe that au pairs just "go with whatever", using a family as a launching pad for entry, then rematching, in a cynical way, as someone suggested above. I DO however see how the matching process could create a problem on the au pair's side, and negatively affect the match overall. I always tell prospective families that the most successful families on the program are not just looking for a great childcare solution, but are also genuinely excited about having the cultural exchange opportunity, like welcoming a long-lost relative from around the world to come live and work with you for a year, and this has been categorically true in my experience. And, this is a core part of what we, as LCCs, are expected to discuss with people. Yes, we sell the flexibility of the program and so on (and to the person complaining about the cost - we disclose that there are additional costs, very clearly, AND for people with multiple children or full-time day-care requirements, it is often STILL more cost-effective), but we are committed to a successful program year experience for both parties - finding a home away from home, finding someone to watch and play with your kids who loves them, that you can afford to pay and fully trust. A human/family-based program like this will always have difficulties and problems, but it doesn't mean it's not a great program, or that it's a scam, or horrible.

    1 Votes
  • Gi
    GICKLIN Jun 21, 2011

    CULTURAL CARE AU PAIR, JUST THIS AGENCY? WHAT ABOUT WITH THE AU PAIR IN AMERICA?
    THANKS

    0 Votes
  • Dn
    dnmtgw May 23, 2011

    WORST EXPERIENCE EVER! LCCs are a complete joke! FAKE people 'running' the operation... not helpful... will say 'oh, we understand', well THEY DON'T! I EMPLORE YOU - DO NOT USE THEM!!! you will end up doing their job and your in awkward situations!!!

    1 Votes
  • Au
    Aupair in Extension May 03, 2011
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    Try checking out AuPair in America or Aupair Care. I have au pair friends working in families through both of these agencies, and they are satisfied with their services.
    Cultural Care Aupair agency's matching process is one of the worst. As an aupair looking for a new family for my 9-month extension I've been disappointed most of the time. After being lucky with my first family, with whom i've been living over 9 months now, enrolling into extension hasn't been as smooth.
    I have applied for extension sometime in February (after 6months in program), as I have planned to travel home to my home country, Slovakia, in my 11th month to renew my visa for extension. So far it's been like 3 months, and i haven't found a new host family yet.

    The matching process in this agency is ridiculous:
    1- One-on-One : Means, aupairs are not able to 'browse' through host families. And once they are matched, it's up to HF to contact them, as aupairs do not have the access to HF's personal info, such as e-mail or phone numbers. Agency might think it is only fair to talk with one family at a time, but on the other side it can take for ever to find the right match.
    Some people call it 'shopping for host families', but i just want to make sure my new HF and I like the same things to be able to enjoy each others presence.

    2- 3-days grace period: Host families have 3-4 days usually to decide whether or not they wish to contact an au pair with whom they've been matched with. In this case it means, au pair's profile is blocked from other views for this period, and it is common for HF to reject the application, without letting the au pair know the reason of their decision.

    3- Re-match, please: From my experience, i'm starting to believe that agency has a lack of knowledge of what is written in AP's applications, and they keep matching girls with wrong families.
    In my case, it has been 14 host families so far, of course, one after another...And mostly the 'interested' families have been the ones completely off what i requested or am experienced to do.

    I've been studying English as secondary language since my second grade in primary school, I completed my junior year at American High School, obtained degree in English at University and always been the top 10% of a class. I'm very active person and like to interact with younger children.
    Therefore, I've been working as summer aupair twice already, taking care of newborns up to 6-year olds, and other than my previous and current aupair experience I have numerous references from babysitting.
    No records on my driver's or security lists...

    English? check
    Experience? check

    So how come it takes that long to match me with the right family? Even my current how family says i have the outstanding application and experience. So what is the problem?
    All i want is to spend my time as an au pair in extension with a family who will appreciate me and value me as a member of a family. My current host family is amazing, but unfortunately i feel like i was not meant for California. I would appreciate if CC would match me with families who really MATCH my application, family with whom i would be sharing the same interests and passions.

    Conclusion? One day i would like to work in an agency like this. Not this one in particular, as we know they are bit unfair, expensive and unreliable, but the place where people truly care about their customers, and work on the cultural exchange basis. I love American culture, and so far i've been lucky to spend my time in USA around amazing people, i just really feel sorry for those unfortunate ones. Families who put their trust into a single person, person who is supposed to make sure they find the right applicant to take care of the little ones, and that one person ends up not-being-personal and does not care about what's right and what's wrong.
    Only a few truly qualified, experienced and dedicated aupairs are matched with nice, appreciative and loving families. The rest of them have to cope with whatever is given to them. And vice versa, wonderful families end up with young, unskilled girls who have no interest in cultural exchange, for some just being able to live in America for 12 months and party every weekend is a top story to share with friend. Sad...

    I am 23, and i believe that this kind of job needs people to be more dedicated to what they are doing. Therefore, if i was considering hiring an aupair, i would most likely look up a different company.
    Just my thoughts...
    If you would like to share something with me, please, do not hesitate to contact me @ [email protected]

    Thank you for reading my post

    0 Votes
  • La
    Lashells Apr 27, 2011
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    Wowwww I'm really shocked:O because I'm locking for a family and truly love kids and would love to learn more about different cultures. Can anyone recommend me a good au-pair agency???

    Thanks,
    Shells;)

    0 Votes
  • Fo
    Former_Aupair Jan 31, 2011

    This is a former "dirty, uneducated, non-English-speaking, no childcare experience" Aupair from Germany...
    I would just like to express that individual experiences from both host families and Aupairs are not necessarily representative of the organization. Since this is a complaint site, I guess a lot of negative comments are to be expected. However, a few bad experiences of individuals do not mean that Cultural Care Aupair is in general an evil organization. I agree, there are many things which can be improved. And I also agree that it does not always work out well for families and Aupairs. But I also think that making quick assumptions on especially Aupairs in general is false.
    Now, I can only speak for myself, but I had a great experience, and am after years still in contact with my host family. We had our share of issues but worked everything out in the end. Before coming to the US, I had many babysitting jobs (no, not my relatives' children) and had been working on theater projects with children. Moreover, I was thoroughly checked up by the organization, having to provide references, criminal background check, etc. In addition, I had an interview to check whether my English skills were sufficient enough.
    I came to the United States wanting to improve my English, experience the 'American way of life' and mature as a person. But I also came knowing that I was responsible for someone else's children, and that it was my job to make their well being a priority.
    This said, I still cherish many moments from my year, especially the bonds with my children and other Aupairs who were some of the kindest people I have ever met.

    0 Votes
  • Wh
    what to look for in a fam/au pair Dec 07, 2010
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    How old are you out of curiousity? I don't think I would have coped at 18 or 19 but by 21/22 i was ready. It's different for everyone.

    I think that is a rather biased opinion. I too, was an Au Pair and had the best year of my life! I've had a very priviledged upbringing myself, so I didn't leave a bad situation and feel like my life in America was the best year as a result. Compared to every other great year of my life, the CCAP experience was the most rewarding, enjoyable, character building program I have ever taken part in. It has shaped the way in which I would like to raise a family myself. There were times when I didn't like my host mum very much and felt a little like i was living in fear but at the end of it all, the memories that stick are only the positive ones which was most of the time anyway. I have both my host parents on facebook now and I am not alone in this experience.

    I can acknowledge that the program doesn't end up suiting some people and that host families can be pushy and bossy but you have to think of the parents as your employers first and foremost and the program as a challenge. You are informed of your employee role at your first meeting in your home country.

    I know Au Pairs who changed families a few times cos of problems but eventually it worked out and they had a fantastic year. None of the travel, study etc is "[censor]". Obviously those things didn't happen for you but for a lot of Au Pairs they do. The year isn't about travel or study anyway. They are bonuses! You obviously went for the wrong reasons. It is about experiencing another culture through the eyes of a native. You have to remember you are an employee, not a lodger taking care of the kids for a few hours a day. I did the full 45hours a week and it was extraordinarily tiring but I grew to love the kids I took care of, as did all my Au Pair friends. I almost stayed longer and seriously considered participating in the program again in the future.

    It is up to you to make good things happen. Not the host family, not the program, not the person who runs your first meeting or your LCC but YOU! (you are told this in your initial meeting) If you don't get on with your host family, talk to your LCC. I once had a meeting with my LCC when things weren't going so great. In my 3rd month, i felt like jumping on a plane right away almost every day but then i just got through the day and would feel happy again by the end of it. Eventually those feelings dissapated. At the beginning I felt frustrated that I couldn't do everything with the kids right away but in hind sight, why would a host family feel totally at ease having their kids alone with someone they barely know. You may think you are ready but you have to give the family time to come round, however demoralising, patronising or irritating it might be. This is all waaaaaaay easier said than done and the program doesn't suit all personality types (this applies to au pairs and host families). It takes at least 3 months to really know even a good family. That said, if the situation is totally unbearable after a few weeks, do something about it. Not all families treat you like slaves and not all Au Pairs are great.

    One of my friends had a terrible host family initially. The host mum told her she was worthless to her face, made fun of her when she was sick and abused her free time. However, my friend knew she wanted to spend a year in America, that Au Pairing was her choice and so she spoke out and changed to a family in a completely different state. Her second family was a little quirky but they were very respectful and everyone got along. My friend also worked a 45hour schedule. I'm really glad I worked the full 45. Consider the schedule they provide you with before you have to accept to avoid feeling like a slave. If they continually abuse your hours don't put up with it. Just say no or talk to your LCC or even better the head office as they get really angry at families who don't follow rules. What do you have to lose?? YOu're not going to get sent home for asserting your rights.

    The person who runs the interview genuinely believes in what they are talking about and genuinely did have a great experience at the end of the day so they aren't "[censor]ting". Also, you are warned that things won't always be peachy in the meeting so don't ignore this. I don't know anyone whose dream is to be an Au Pair in America but if you like kids, can cope with cultural and irritating personality differences and have the confidence to do something about unhappiness (if you are unfortunate enough for this to happen- a small percentage have it really tough) then you will have a fantastic year. If you are not sure, do not embark on an Au Pair experience or any exchange program till you are.

    0 Votes
  • Jh
    jhjffhkhfkhkfjsh Dec 06, 2010

    To All Future Au Pairs out there,
    Please don't come here and work as an aupair, it will be the most awful experience of your life. Don't let yourself influnced by the "beatiful things" that you are told before you sign the contract, such as you get to travel, you get to study, it is an cutural exchange. [censored], these are all lies. I just want to warn everybody not to make the mistake i made, and if i'd know then what i know know i would never in a million years come here, leave my family, friends, job, to come here to live my dream. What dream?NIGHTMARE!!!
    Please run away and listen to me!
    I don't want to scare you, but the chances in finding a good family, treating you like a human being and not like a slave, are very small.
    If you still decide to come i wish all good luck and God bless you

    0 Votes
  • Wh
    what to look for in a fam/au pair Nov 08, 2010
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    I totally agree with the above statement but of course it is easier said than done. It really summed everything up nicely though. My host family and I did all those things, so our situation worked. Of course there were tense times but I still consider my life there "my happy place"! I'm returning for thanksgiving next year and I'm sooooo excited!

    And sleep is the key people! I just did research with the assistance of some of cultural care au pair's au pairs and families on the relationship between sleep deprivation and unsuccessful host family environments, depression/homesickness, early return, friends issues, job performance, frequency of illness, motivation, quality of childcare, cognitive perfomance etc. There is a strong correlation between the effects of sleep deprivation on an au pairs job performance and retention rate in America. The responses from the host family and their au pair mostly matched up. That is, where an au pair said they were getting fewer than 7 hours of sleep on evenings before work, the family usually answered negatively about their job performance . The questionnaire asked au pairs who had been there for varying lengths of time a range of related questions about their experience up to date and there was a separate questionnaire for the host families. The questionnaires took account of personality traits and average month to experience homesickness. It wasn't CCAP specific but it was a great research experience. Would have been great to have access to EEG facilities for more scientific proof but the general picture was successfully obtained.

    Discussion about the importance of sleep should take place at the au pair school. Childcare work is different to any other hence the importance of my study. The major question being, is sleep a major factor in au pairs leaving early or changing families? The results would suggest yes. Especially when an au pairs is changing families multiple times. Where I would usually turn on the tv or read before bed, as an au pair i just had to go to sleep right away. If i didn't I wasn't as focussed or as quick to react the next day which felt awful. Sleep is particularly important for the teenage au pairs as they require more sleep for brain development. I'm currently in the process of writing the final report.

    0 Votes
  • Au
    au pair info Nov 07, 2010

    There are a lot of biased comments on here... so here's an attempt to set the record straight from someone who spent several years with the program a while back.

    The basic concept is simple: A nice family in the US with small children and resources to spend is connected with a young person from another country who agrees to spend a year living in the home and exchanging cultural experiences while watching the children.

    If everything works well, the program is great and provides wonderful experience that all parties enjoy.

    The catch is that you are mixing some very volatile personal interactions: toddlers, teenagers, spouses... all of which have the potential for problems. Then you throw in money issues, parenting issues, dating issues, language issues, driving issues, homesickness issues, people living in your house issues, etc. and there's the potential for all sorts of headaches.

    There's no way the "program" can take care of all these issues... so the key is really to have a good match between a family and an au pair. Take the time to review the applications carefully (both families and au pairs) and I'd suggest making a few phone calls back and forth before the year starts. Then absolutely set up a week to transition into the program... especially for new families who have never had a teenager living in their homes, it's vital to have a nice introduction to the family, the children, the rules, the community, etc. And set up a process to deal with problems... because there will be some during the year. It's always better to set up the process BEFORE they happen... a weekly meeting to review how things are going is absolutely a good idea. If the relationship between the family and the au pair is strong, then most of the problems will be resolved. But just like any other relationship, it takes a lot of effort to make it strong.

    In addition, there's a lot of understanding that's required because many of the issues are emotional. For example, many host mothers have a hard time adjusting to the au pair relationship... often there are underlying issues related to how they feel about someone else taking care of their children, or a young woman interacting with their husband (indeed living in the same house with the guy) or expectations that the au pair will be a best friend... or a housekeeper... or a teacher.

    It's also good to be aware that the family situations are all different, which can be a challenge for the au pairs when they compare situations. Some live in expensive homes and take vacations... others live with families who are facing financial challenges... or who are very frugal. Some have three or more kids... some have one. Some have happy marriages... some are close to divorce. Some have lots of friends and family around... some are loners. So there are always going to be complaints that one situation isn't fair because... whatever example fits.

    The host family really needs to take the initiative in making the program work well... chose an au pair that fits their situation and provide the leadership and parenting needed to make things work well. When that happens, it can be a great experience.

    0 Votes
  • Wh
    what to look for in a fam/au pair Aug 23, 2010
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    If you are talking about ef schools I can answer that too as I did that program also. They are supposed to be there for school and respect household rules too.I'm going in another ef program next near too. My third one! I'm a full bottle! They have lots of money from me! I've done the hf thing twice. Are you talking about ef languge school or high school year overseas? Respecting host families is important for a good relationship but again ask about expectations before arrival. They are young adults so some partying will definitely happen. Consider your behaviour at their age before agreeing to being a hf too :)

    0 Votes
  • Wh
    what to look for in a fam/au pair Aug 23, 2010
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    If college is number one on their list they should really do a different ef program. Of course they want to have fun but they should be reasonable. There are questions regarding education component but not all interviewers ask it as it is only required if we suspect college is the real reason. Same goes for questions about expectation. I am very particular about such questions as I know some have no interest in kids. In the end it is up to main office about suitability of candidate. Partying on night before work is not appropriate unless they ate getting at least 7 hours if sleep and not hungover. Hanging out with friends for example at the movies or dinner/coffee in free time assuming adequate sleep is reasonable for free time during the week I think. Ask questions about free time in home country when you talk to them on skype/ phone though. My friends and I did pretty tame stuff in week night free time and sightseeing and nightlife on days where we didn't have work the next day. I had a curfew with the car of 2 am if I was using it at night for my own safety unless I was staying the night at a friends they knew where myself and the car were safe. I had a car for my free time and respected their rules. I would always ask if I would be out with it longer to see if it was ok. If your au pair is partying more than you think is safe or had college as first priority discuss what their expectations of the program were. I worked almost every Saturday night which meant I just went out very late on Friday evenings knowing I had the whole of Saturday till 530 to rest if needed. Weekend off each per month was discussed a month in advanced and we had a calender in the kitchen sk everyor could see what was happening during the week With the schedule including play dates, after school activities, evenings parenys went out etc. All about working a system everyone is happy with out and is fair for both parties. there were no arguments about weekends off cos of the calender. Hope this is a bit helpful to understand what us reasonable expectation if au pair.

    0 Votes
  • Wh
    what to look for in a fam/au pair Aug 23, 2010
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    Hey would anyone be interested in participating in a study I am performing about the effects of sleep deprivation on the job performance and retention rate of au pairs in America? It isn't ccap specific and makes no mention of ccap but I thought it would be interesting to see from a host families point of view if their au pairs poor performance is due to them not getting much sleep whether it be that they are staying up too late at your house or out partying. Just stuff like estimate no of hrs per night sleep before working. Sleep deprivation can have a detrimental impact on attention, cognitive performance, memory and learning, depression- maybe lead to early return- work place safety issues, accidents etc. Poor decision making/judgement and strained relationships with people. No names will be mentioned, confidentiality assured. Not going to be published as it is part of a health research project for my uni degree but results can be made available if requested. I can email and consent form, info sheet and questionnaire if anyone is interested. Perhaps if you would like to give details of differing behaviour during sleep deprived days. Email me on [email protected] remember not ccap specific just an idea of the impact sleep dep may have had on an au pair you have or had. If the au pair would like to participate that is good too. Will all be confidential. Thanks and hope to hear from someone soon. Maybe it would be something good to teach at au pair schools in all agencies? Lccs ask around with au pairs and get back to me if you like. If they have problems ask about sleep patterns. I had a positive experience with ccap and and had the best family ever but I know fams and au pairs with unfortunate tails too. No agency is perfect nor each family or au pair but I'd love to find out some contributing factors to problem stories other than simply the au pair was no good. Behavioural patterns is what I am interested in.
    Sarah

    0 Votes
  • Qp
    QPN Aug 22, 2010
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    What about the students they send to the schools? Do they come to work, party, or go to school?

    0 Votes
  • Rh
    RhodyMom Jul 23, 2010

    Oh, did I mention that they told us we wouldn't get refunded because they "front load the cost" of getting the au pair here, "trained", etc., then went on to charge the SAME amount to her next family, even though we had already covered those costs? Sham sham sham!

    0 Votes
  • Rh
    RhodyMom Jul 23, 2010

    Agreed! they are terrible.

    They misrepresented the girl who came to us - she was a train wreck. Tried for support, the LCC did not get in touch with us until I called the VP and left a number of messages. They finally removed her, RE-PLACED her in another home (so sorry for them!) and then did not give us even a decent refund. We left the program because we would have to get daycare for about a month or so until they "found" a "suitable" candidate. This was not an option for us. Out of $3500+, we saw $740 back. She was here for three days (yea, after the first full day when she wanted nothing to do with my kids, did not let the three year old touch her hair, and yelled at her for being at the door to her room (while I was right there!!!) I wasn't going to let her stay any longer.

    0 Votes
  • Ha
    Happy Host Family Jul 05, 2010

    My family has had 4 aupairs, 3 of which were with CAAP. Our last AP stayed 2 years and we adored her - she's leaving in 2 weeks and our entire family (and neighborhood) will be sad to see her go. We cant wait to visit her in her home country this coming year. On the flip side, we did have a prior aupair where we experienced problems and CCAP's main office was extremely responsive. I've found that its important to let the APs know from the interview process - this isnt a vacation. Its hard work watching children for 45 hours a week. Also, its important to view your AP as a part of the family. I agree with the other person who posted and mentioned its like having a sister. I have also heard about horrible host families. But I have also heard about horrible APs. Just like everything - there are always some bad apples out there. My advice would be to try and determine the AP's true motivations for coming to the US. I think some of the foreign agents definitely bill this as a year of vacation and fun in the US with a bit of baby sitting on the side. Our last aupair from Colombia was a very hard worker, loved children, and pitched in around the house as if she really was part of the family. We couldn't be more appreciative. We used another agency before CCAP and I can tell you CCAP is 1000x better in responsiveness, traning and getting information out about taxes, drivers licenses, how to covney rules of the house etc. However, I think the process they use to bring in APs is the same from agency to agency.

    0 Votes
  • Av
    avoidCCAP Jun 21, 2010
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    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    CCAP placed two suboptimal au pairs with our family. The first one was Russian who didn't speak English or drive (as stated on her application). She surfed internet porn sites on our home computer despite our rules and met with strange men in the neighborhood. She partied and was dangerous with our children. We transitioned and CCAP was unsympathetic to how dangerous this au pair was (left children outside unattended, for example). The replacement au pair they supplied spoke English and drove but did nothing else the remainder of the year. Their au pairs are spoiled brats who are unscreened. We utilized another company with much greater success. CCAP was a failure to our family in many ways.

    0 Votes
  • Wh
    what to look for in a fam/au pair Jun 09, 2010
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Yeah, my friend felt pressured by CCAP to choose another family too quickly. I know they have a small time frame but it isn't healthy to shove someone into another family when there are reservations. CCAP threatened to take her visa away if she didn't accept a match right away.

    Good on you for sticking by your au pair!

    0 Votes
  • Ta
    Taowyn Jun 09, 2010
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Karin and what to look for,

    (Karin, sorry to have misspelled your name earlier)

    Thank you so much for your feedback and response. But I trust the word of my ex AP and there is no reason she would lie to me, she has nothing to gain. I have let her know that she can visit the transition web site and contact Karin. She is so angry and upset right now that she wants nothing more to do with CCAP but I had asked her to consider the consequences of losing her Visa and to reconsider contacting the PD and possibly her own country's agency.


    I do know that when this new HF chose her, I voiced my concern about the family situation to AP and my LCC. AP felt she could not say no to this family for fear of not being able to find another one. It is a sad situation, one that has left a bad taste for me and for AP? I hope I can talk some sense into her to reconsider talking with her AD.

    Karin, if she happens to contact you, she goes by Tang.

    Thank you again. Your comments and concern have lessened the anger. A little.

    0 Votes
  • Wh
    what to look for in a fam/au pair Jun 09, 2010
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    facebook also has groups that allow CCAP's to find new families and vice versa. I like your website idea Karin. Wish I could tell that to hope to be au pairs at my meetings. I'm afraid it might not be good publicity though...haha and you are totally right about au pairs choosing luxuries over families. That was the main thing I learned through my year (even though I only had one family). The family choice is soooo important. Talk to previous au pairs!!!

    0 Votes
  • Wh
    what to look for in a fam/au pair Jun 09, 2010
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    With regards to LCC's. My LCC changed half way through my year and the second one was awesome! So open, friendly and she even invited me for christmas with her family as my host family were away and they didn't celebrate christmas. She was also my best friends host mum though so i am a little biased ;)

    I watched her go through the LCC application prcess which is actually more complicated and competitive than I would have thought. I don't think she was ever interviewed by anyone other than my previous LCC though so perhaps the guidelines for accepting people as LCC's should be tightened??

    0 Votes

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