America's First Au Pair Program

Trusted live-in child care — since 1986

Congratulations to our
2019 Au Pair of the Year winners!

We received a record number of host family nominations, each of them filled with heartwarming stories about their au pair. Choosing winners for first, second and third place only proved to be too difficult, resulting in two-way ties for second and third place. So this year we are thrilled to honor and acknowledge five inspiring young women. Below are their special stories. Enjoy!

    2019 Au Pair of the Year – First Place Winner

    Nadine Nauschutz – South Africa

    "Nadine is an excellent example of how to live life to its fullest, not in words but in action. As a family, we have something special. We all have crazy schedules, and weekdays are always hectic. However, we have so many priceless memories we shared together. We are a family by choice, not by blood, which makes our bond that much stronger because we simply cannot take each other for granted. Our relationships are bound by mutual understanding, respect, and love. At the end of the day, we always know that we have each other's back. Nadine is indispensable in every aspects of our lives."


  • Second Place Winner

    Sara Cieszko – Poland

    "Sara was amazing from the moment she arrived. Our two boys, ages 5 and 1, took to her immediately. It literally took less than a day for both of them to jump into her arms. Sara has experience with young children as she has two younger brothers, but I’ve never seen anything like the instantaneous way that our boys attached to her. We have had tremendous success with our previous au pairs, 8 wonderful years. We feel so fortunate, especially since we stay in touch with all of our previous au pairs, who are like family. But Sara is especially exceptional.

    Sara showed her amazing true colors when our 20-month-old son was diagnosed with cancer just a few months after Sara came to live with us. Obviously, it was devastating to all of us. Sara didn’t have to work a lot of hours during those early days because our 7-year-old was in school and my husband and I were alternating staying at the hospital with our 1½-year-old. Sara would come to the hospital anyway and just sit and watch the baby sleep for hours. Sara was just always there. At one point I pulled her aside and said, 'Sara, I would understand if you wanted to match with a different family. This is not what you signed up for.' Sara looked me in the eye, and without hesitating, said, 'Mari, none of us signed up for this.' And she has been our rock."

  • Second Place Winner

    Franzi Liem – Germany

    "Franzi isn’t our first au pair. But she is the first one to have become so part of our daily lives. We fit together like a hand and glove, bagels and cream cheese, or Bert and Ernie. We realized that we thought of her as more than an au pair when we started introducing her to our friends as another friend we wanted them to meet...

    Of course, Franzi takes excellent care of our children. But she also helps us become better parents. Her insight, gained from her child care experience in Germany, has helped us understand some of our children’s behaviors, and her advice has helped us do things differently. With her support, we have moved closer to being the parents we want to be."

  • Third Place Winner

    Francinny Nery Sarzedas Amarante – Brazil

    "Francinny, or 'Ninny' as my 2½-year-old calls her, came to live with us in May of 2018. From the moment she arrived, it felt like another piece of home had arrived that should have always been here. From day one, she went above and beyond every second of every day. I was a first-time struggling mom with zero child experience and sometimes a screaming 13-month-old. Francinny could sense my fear and anxiety and always calmed me and my daughter with her sweet temperament and gentle demeanor. Even if it meant intervening when she was off the clock, she didn’t hesitate."

  • Third Place Winner

    Ana Carolina Teixeira Lopes Rosa – Brazil

    "The daily needs of a big family are demanding, and the best way I can describe Ana is someone who helps lighten that load at every level. She is exceptionally responsible, but she also is smart and funny – personality traits that enable her success. She is a fully-integrated member of our family who participates in the daily maintenance of our home and schedules, but also joins in on the family fun. I can’t count the number of times we’ve belly-laughed with (and without) the kids. She also manages the more challenging moments with grace, and I’ve never felt there was an issue we couldn’t discuss."

The information below explains the process that was used to select the winners of the 2019 Au Pair of the Year contest. We believe the contest was a wonderful way for host families to show their appreciation for their au pair's achievements and the ways in which she has touched their family. We'd like to thank all our host families for their submissions.
  • Each host family that entered the contest submitted an essay of 500 to 850 words that described the characteristics that make their au pair exceptional, noted the positive impact she has had on their family, and explained how she has integrated into their local community and learned about America.
  • To be eligible, the au pair being nominated must have been an au pair in 2019.
  • APIA asked the Community Counselors to submit a reference on behalf of all entries under consideration. The reference included details of the au pair's participation in the educational component, cluster meetings and activities, and the special ways the au pair embraced her experience in America.

The Au Pair of the Year – First Place Winner received:

  • 2 round trip tickets to reconnect with her host family in the U.S!
  • Entry into the International Au Pair Association's Au Pair of the Year contest!
  • Recognition on the Au Pair in America website!

Second Place and Third Place Winners received:

  • 1 round trip ticket to reconnect with their host family in the U.S!
  • Entry into the International Au Pair Association's Au Pair of the Year contest!
  • Recognition on the Au Pair in America website!

All nominees received:

  • A certificate from Au Pair in America and a copy of the host family's nomination letter!
  • Host family essays and Community Counselor references were judged by a committee appointed by Au Pair in America.
  • All contest entries are property of Au Pair in America, including rights to edit and publish the material.
  • Travel arrangements require 60 days notice and are subject to availability at the time of booking. Travel will be booked to the nearest major airport. Maximum value of $1500 per ticket.
  • By submitting a nomination, the host family agreed to the Au Pair of the Year Contest Official Rules.
    Click here for the official contest rules.

Each year the International Au Pair Association ( awards one exceptional au pair with the title "Au Pair of the Year." The "Au Pair of the Year" award not only celebrates one young person's achievements as an au pair, but also gives positive recognition to all au pairs and au pair programs across the world through its international media coverage.

Au Pair in America's winning Au Pair of the Year will be entered into IAPA's international contest. Submissions are judged by a selection panel appointed by IAPA, and three au pair finalists are selected. Each finalist must write a short essay detailing her/his au pair experience. Au pair essays are evaluated by the panel and a winner is chosen. The winning au pair will be notified by IAPA. All contest entries will become property of the International Au Pair Association

The winning au pair will be required to attend IAPA's Annual Conference in March (all expenses paid by IAPA) where she will be presented the "Au Pair of the Year" award.

US Office for host families

Au Pair in America, 1 High Ridge Park,
Stamford, CT 06905

Phone: toll free

(800) 928-7247 direct - (203) 399-5000


London Office for Au Pairs

Au Pair in America, 37 Queen's Gate,
London SW7 5HR


+44 (0) 20 7581 7322


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