Kim Clark, local fitness instructor and Santa Barbara resident, former director of sales and marketing for The Santa Barbara Region Chamber of Commerce and research manager for the Santa Barbara News-Press, has joined The International Au Pair Exchange (TIAPE) team as a Local Exchange Coordinator.
Recently designated by the U.S. Department of State to administer an au pair program, TIAPE places carefully screened au pairs between the ages of 18 and 26 from foreign countries with qualified host families in California, Oregon, and Washington. Au pairs from the U.S. can also be placed with host families abroad. LECs provide continuous support to both au pairs and host families in their areas and help them maximize their program experience.
Says Clark, “I’m excited about joining TIAPE, and look forward to bringing this life-enriching cultural exchange program to families in our community.”
Through TIAPE’s au pair program, au pairs provide up to 45 hours of childcare per week while living with a host family for a minimum of 12 months. During this time, au pairs complete six semester hours of academic credit and receive an education stipend. In addition to the education stipend, host families are responsible for paying a weekly stipend and providing room and board. The average weekly cost to participate in the program, including the stipend and most program-related fees, is under $350, which is less expensive than many other childcare options for two or more children.
Families who choose to host an au pair not only benefit from the valuable cultural enrichment opportunities, but also from the ability to have more quality time with their family, more control over their childcare, and more personalized care for their children. Plus, families and au pairs who participate in the au pair program have dedicated, year-round program support from the TIAPE headquarters staff and their LEC. Upon arrival to the United States, au pairs participate in a four-day orientation and training, which includes infant and child CPR with first aid, child development and care, and guidance on adjusting to life and customs in the U.S.
The International Au Pair Exchange is an operating series of Member Synergy, LLC and designated by the U.S. Department of State as a J-1 Exchange Visitor Program sponsor. In cooperation with partner organizations around the world, TIAPE carefully screens and matches qualified au pairs with host families in California, Oregon, and Washington. TIAPE’s mission is to provide parents with access to a unique childcare option that meets the specific needs of each family, delivers the unsurpassed personal attention that every parent wants for their children, and is truly affordable in comparison to other typical childcare options. We are “Connecting the World, One Family at a Time.”
Learn more about TIAPE’s au pair cultural exchange program online, or call 360.483.4594.