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Japanese Au Pair Builds an Online Community for Learning & Culture

Japanese Au Pair Builds an Online Community for Learning & Culture

When Moeka arrived to the United States from Japan this past December, she brought the gift of hope for everyone. A hope to use her time in the U.S. to connect and make a difference in the lives of others, even during the pandemic. Moeka hit the ground running. A couple of weeks after her arrival, she reached out to her Area Director with an interest in helping other au pairs learn English. "Due to COVID, I didn't have much opportunity to make friends, so I decided to organize a Sunday evening meeting for au pairs that want to improve their English and make friends" Moeka said.

Every Sunday evening, Moeka, conducts an ESL class for all au pairs who want to improve their English. Moeka's online efforts didn't stop there. She also hosts a multi-lingual class every Saturday evening for any au pairs interested in learning other languages or cultures besides English and American. "I think Moeka's zoom meetings are a great way to know more about au pairs and share our culture and how our year is going. I met an au pair through Moeka's class who I will be going on vacation with once the pandemic is over," said au pair Adriana from Mexico.

japanese au pair with her host children during the holidays

Moeka's host family also reaps the rewards of her efforts. She's always looking for different ways to entertain her host children during these difficult times and the fact that both her and her host parents love to cook has turned into a Friday night ritual. "I introduce different Japanese cuisines every Friday night to my host family. We all enjoyed making a sushi roll called Ehoumaki this past month. Eating Ehoumaki is a way to pray for health and happiness in the Japanese culture" Moeka stated.

Moeka's weekly Zoom classes have given other au pairs something to look forward to. It provides a way for them to connect and share experiences while adhering to CDC guidelines. It has been a wonderful learning opportunity for au pairs, especially for those who have felt isolated during the pandemic. Moeka has shown that acts of kindness can create a huge impact, as she has done for the au pair community and her host family. Moeka’s leadership, empathetic nature, and desire to provide a helping hand to others is an inspiration for all. It is proof that building connections is still possible in this virtual world.

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