Why a Nanny, Rather Than an Au Pair or Babysitter?
"I believe there is a distinction in the services provided by nannies as opposed to those provided by au pairs, babysitters, or any kind of daycare providers," says Becky Kavanagh, long-time professional nanny and the president of the International Nanny Association. "The care is individualized because we are only working with one family and schedules are dictated by the child's needs as well as the parent's desires."
There are some who believe that for every nanny there is the perfect family, and for every family there is the perfect nanny. When the right "match" is made, it can be magic.
Becky tells of one of her charges getting off the school bus from kindergarten, visibly shaken. When she asked him what was wrong, he started to cry. Becky couldn't imagine what had happened. Had one of the kids at school been mean? Did he have trouble with the class work? The boy confessed the cause of his concern soon enough: he'd discovered that some of his classmates had to go to daycare. He was upset to realize that not everyone had a "Becky" of their own.
Another nanny relates a series of niceties that made each of her nanny jobs special. One family made sure the children said "thank you" to her each night before going to bed. Several families gave her time off to attend training conferences (and some even paid for them), and others rewarded her with countless small "perks" that made her feel both cherished and respected.