An, an au pair from Mexico, is using her time in the U.S. to create an incredible bond with her host family and learn all she can from her cultural exchange program. An was ecstatic to match with a family in Colorado who had just welcomed twin boys. She said,
I really enjoy all of my experiences as an au pair. It’s been an amazing two years. I love my host babies so much. I feel so blessed to have the chance to be here.
She is not the only one to feel blessed. An has created an amazing bond with her host family in a way that comes from the heart. For her host grandmother’s birthday celebration, An put together some incredible gifts to show her appreciation and love for her family. She crafted a painting out of the twins’ footprints and designed a necklace with one charm to represent each of the grandmother’s grandchildren. She even took an adorable photo of the twins and made a cute frame to put it in. An stated that the best part of the au pair program is,
The amazing people that have become my family. I love being part of every milestone the kids reach. It is something really special to experience. My host family shares everything with me and makes me feel like I am home. They take care of me without wanting anything in exchange.
An enjoys working hard to help the development of her host children. She said, “I’ve been learning a lot about early childcare because I don´t just want to take care of my host kids, I want to help them to excel through each milestone. My favorite part is seeing those little kids grow so much and recognize a little bit of you in them.” An created sensory boxes where the babies can sit, touch, pull, and play with items that stimulate their learning. An’s area director even raves about her saying,
She is always so cheerful and positive. She genuinely loves and adores her host kids.
An and her host family have been able to share their cultures as well. Her host family travels a lot and have lived in different parts of the world, so they have a plethora of cross-cultural insights to share. An and her host family watch their favorite movies together and love to explain the historical and pop culture references that are relevant to the movies. They also cook different kinds of food from Italian, French, Indian, Mexican, American, Brazilian, and Thai. An’s host family tries to involve her in many American activities and An teaches them about different dishes and traditional costumes in Mexico. An said, “It´s been really wonderful to learn from each other and the easy communication we share.”
An has taken away so much from her experiences as an au pair that will benefit her in the future. She said, “Becoming an au pair has given me the chance to understand myself better and learn how to be more responsible. In my classes, I´ve had the opportunity to prepare for my future career in my country. I have also learned about the cultures my friends have shared with me and have integrated some of those traditions into my life."
This experience has given me all of the tools I need to become the person I want to be.