“I considered how much I would change as a person as I knew travelling and living in a foreign country would make me grow up on many different levels. I weighed up all the benefits I would experience from moving to the USA for one year and knew this was something I just had to do!”
Hi Everyone, I’m Nanna, an au pair from Denmark!
I chose to become an au pair first of all because I’ve always enjoyed looking after children and I wanted to do this to gain more hands-on experience for when I return back home. Secondly, I chose to become an au pair because I wanted to explore the world and see what else was out there beyond the borders of Denmark, the little country I call home.
Before I decided to travel as an au pair I really thought about whether I’d be able to cope with not seeing my family for a long time. I also considered how much I would change as a person as I knew travelling and living in a foreign country would make me grow up on many different levels. I weighed up all the benefits I would experience from moving to the USA for one year and knew this was something I just had to do!
I applied through the Au Pair in America representative in Denmark, Travel Alott and they were so helpful through-out the entire process, if I had any questions I needed answers to it was easy for me to get in touch with my Danish contact person. I feel like I got almost all the information I was looking for from the Au Pair in America and Travel Alott websites but if I couldn’t find the information I was looking for, then I could always reach out to my contact person from Alott, and she would answer any questions.
Au Pair in America offer the choice of 3 different programs which gave me the opportunity to find the program that best suited my experience. I chose the au pair program instead of the eduCare program because I didn’t have a specific age group I wanted to work with, but also because I knew what I wanted to study when I returned home so I didn’t feel the need to dedicate more time than those required in the standard au pair program, to studying whilst I was in the USA.
The first time i met my host family was at 10.30 pm and the kids were asleep, so I only spoke to my host parents. I met the kids the following day when they were done with school and began to develop great relationships with them. My favourite moment so far has been one of my host kids’ birthday, because this was of course her big day and she was SUPER excited, but it was also the day I really noticed how different a simple birthday celebration is not only in two different families but in two different countries with very different cultures and traditions. I feel so lucky to be able to experience simply things such as birthdays in a different country and for the opportunity to immerse myself in another country and a culture outside of Denmark.
My host family had an au pair before me that they loved very much, so they were anxious to see how it would be with me as their new au pair. We have connected so well and I definitely feel at home with them. If you’re worried that you won’t know anyone around where you will be living as an au pair… don’t! There will be lots of other au pairs who will know exactly how you are feeling, some of the other au pairs from my area reached out to me before I arrived to answer any questions I had and they really made me feel welcome.
My host family have been so great at helping me to fully experience the American culture and they’ve totally welcomed and have loved me sharing my culture with them. I have mostly shared the Danish culture with them through cooking! I am trying to cook them some of my favourite Danish dishes and my host family have also been trying to learn some Danish words which has been very cute and funny to watch!