Au Pair Tips for Coronavirus

Over the past two weeks, I’ve seen a lot of au pair friends leave England to go home to their families because of Coronavirus. Some of them because they don’t want to get stuck in England, with many countries closing their borders. Others because their parents asked them to come home.

Talk to your host parents.

If you’re concerned about anything, let your host family know. They will (hopefully) be understanding and try to change some things around so that you’re more comfortable working with the kids.

It’s especially important to talk to them if you’re thinking about leaving early. Try to do this as early as possible – even if you haven’t decided yet, you should let them know it’s a possibility. Schools in the UK close today for an undetermined period of time. But that doesn’t mean parents won’t need your help anymore. If anything, they’ll need more help than before. So be aware of that and try to help them out as much as you can.

Stay informed

Turn on the tv, look at the news, learn what’s going on in both your home country and the country that you’re an au pair in. Keep track of the situation and stay in touch with family and friends – not only so you know if they’re okay but also to let them know that you’re still alive!

Pay extra attention to washing your hands

Looking after kids can be a very messy job, especially if they’re still young. Take hand gel or wipes with you whenever you’re out with the kids to keep their hands (and your own) clean. Help them wash their hands when you get home if they’re too young to do it themselves and try to turn it into a fun activity by singing different songs while doing it!

Stop hanging out in groups

The government has been talking about social distancing since the first cases of Coronavirus were confirmed in England. But for some reason, a lot of au pairs that I know don’t seem to understand that hanging out together can spread the virus. This past week, they’ve still gone out to cafes and other public places nearly every day. Which is not the best thing to do.

It might be isolating to be in a strange country, in the house of a family that’s not your own, without being able to go outside and meet your friends. But that’s just the way things are at the moment. And just imagine how terrible you’ll feel if someone else falls ill because you were a carrier of the virus!

Stay safe! And let’s hope things get better soon!

12 Comments

  1. Bindu Thomas
    23 March 2020 / 6:40 am

    This is very useful in this situation. Thank you for the information

  2. 23 March 2020 / 4:52 am

    Social distancing is very important to flatten the curve. Everyone must be cautious and follow what the government has ordered for everyone’s safety.

  3. 23 March 2020 / 12:01 am

    Hi Martha,
    Great tips not just for au pairs but for everyone really. These are very difficult times, and we all need to take precautions to stay safe and healthy.
    Thanks for sharing.
    Best,
    Pedro

  4. aisasami
    22 March 2020 / 1:27 pm

    Wonderful tips for au pair living anywhere in the world. I wonder if au pairs are advised to follow their home country’s warnings and advice or the one the one they are currently living at? (A lot of studying abroad students here in Japan have left as they listened to the US authorities).

    • maartjevansandwijk
      Author
      22 March 2020 / 3:22 pm

      That’s actually a really good question! Since I have zero plans to go back to the Netherlands, I’ve been following the UK’s government’s advice and I’ve assumed au pairs in the UK have been doing the same…

  5. Gervin Khan
    22 March 2020 / 7:24 am

    As we all know what’s happening in the entire globe, this is a perfect post to read and be informed of what needs to do. Thanks and keep on sharing, it will definitely a big help for everyone.

  6. Nate
    22 March 2020 / 2:49 am

    Solid tips here in a stressful time of pandemic. I think we all need to take a step back and breathe!

  7. 21 March 2020 / 9:22 pm

    These are so important for people to stay safe. We are really limiting any exposure!

  8. 21 March 2020 / 8:42 pm

    These are such great tips! Everybody is effected by this in such different ways!

  9. Lyosha Varezhkina
    21 March 2020 / 3:08 pm

    very useful advise in the stressful time of pandemic.

  10. 20 March 2020 / 8:45 pm

    Some useful advice here for some groups who aren’t considered enough.

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