IAPA Au Pair of the Year named at WETM-IAC 2015 in Lisbon, Portugal
German au pair Lena Halberstadt was presented with this year’s International Au Pair Association (IAPA) Au Pair of the Year award during the celebration dinner held at Lisbon’s Estufa Fria venue during the Work Experience Travel Market and IAPA Annual Conference (WETM-IAC) 2015.
The award was presented by IAPA Chairperson Patricia Brunner and recognises the work of one individual taking part in an au pair experience, while enhancing awareness of the benefits of this demanding role across the globe.
Lena, an AuPairCare au pair, was nominated by the Rasmussen family from Michigan in the United States of America, where she has been placed for the last seven months.
Explaining why she nominated Lena for the award, her host mum Sheila said: “Looking after five kids with very different personalities and a large age gap is no easy assignment, yet Lena accomplishes it with ease.
“In the short time Lena has been with us, she has been a positive ray of sunshine and although aged just 18, she is very mature.”
It is clear that Lena is equally happy with her placement. Speaking during WETM-IAC, she said: “My host family made me feel very welcome and part of the family right from the start. I feel like a big sister to the younger children, and like a friend to the older ones.
“We do many activities together, from baking to playing soccer and baseball, and I have also introduced them to [German speciality food] Schnitzel. I will definitely keep in touch with them when I return to Germany later this year.”
IAPA member organisations invite host families to nominate their au pairs for the award, with IAPA Board members making the final selection from a shortlist of three finalists.
IAPA Chairperson Patricia Brunner said: “We received a record number of 59 nominations this year and the competition was strong.
“We are delighted to have selected Lena as Au Pair of the Year 2015 based on the fact that she is a true ambassador for au pairing. It is clear that Lena has become an important member of the Rasmussen family, while she values her experience highly. On behalf of the IAPA Board, well done Lena!”
Look here to find out more on the Au Pair of the Year award.