I’ve been really bothered when you hear about the sad plight of Au pairs here in Denmark I always thought that it’s sole Filipina problem but I found out that there’s also a handful of male filipino au pair and I contacted this former au pair here in Denmark his name Almay Aguirre. He had been carrying her bad experience for a long time but by telling his story in his blog it lightens his heavy heart now he is with me in au pair awareness advocacy. Please read his story and tell me what you think.
Almay Aguirre, The Filipino Au pair
Let me tell you a story about me being an Au pair in Denmark, In the Philippines before I have applied as Au pair, I was told by a close friend of mine that if I was interested to work in Denmark, she was able not mention what type of work it was and at that moment I was not so knowledgeable of what type of work I was dealing with, with me at that time hearing even just a word “abroad” is just too far from a dream come true because thousands and thousands of Filipino graduates are striving hard and to find employment locally and abroad. As I have heard from my friend telling me if I was interested working abroad, my mind was just instantly blown away and I have not wasted a seconds to reply “yes” I am very interested. After that I had started asking her what to do, what are the thing needed for me to qualify, I also told her “in a joking way” that I am very willing to sell anything or even my “underwear” if I had too hehe! just for me to go abroad, you should know the facts that even if you grow old working in a supermarket or any Shopping Mall in the Philippines the salary of an Au pair in Denmark or was it called “Allowance” at 2500 dkk.
according to http://www.xe.com/ucc/convert.cgi:
is much bigger than a salary of a company ranked Manager, well it depends actually which company manager, if the company is just a local and newly established company then it is little a higher but if it is an international based company then it’s a little close on some of the companies in the Philippines. so then this good friend of mine has financed me everything from the start from gathering requirements expenses, visa fees, travel expenses and up to the time that she was also the one who bought me my ticket from Manila to Denmark. the only problem with the situation is that it cost me and her so much for I was not expecting it would reach up to a hundred thousand pesos and more of a total expenses. anyway I was under an informal Au pair agency where she has also undergone before. let me tell you in a simple mathematical ways:
Applying as Au pair from the Philippines depends on your logic, inside contacts and strategy:
Travel Expenses: (from your local province or city up to Departing the country)
- Plane Ticket from your local province before passing an application
- Lodging Allowance: (if you don’t have any relatives living near the Embassy or Consulate)
- Embassy Fee: (According to embassy)
- Plane Ticket returning to your local province after passing an application
- Plane Ticket for having a visa stamp on your passport
- Here comes the Plane ticket expenses
- Not to mention Fees for Exiting the country hahaha!
- before I forgot the Fees for the one who finds your host family or employer 🙂 (very unlawful but some people has no choice)
Please take note: that it is very unlawful that someone will ask for a payment for finding your host family but in reality it really happens, It is like a commission for them that their reason is they are the one who finds your host family and some people says that it is their responsibility of finding another one who will be replacing you after your contract has ended, well let me tell you that you can report them to the police for it is very unlawful for us, never let it happen to you or to anyone, some people sell their properties and some sell all of their live stock just for them to afford to pay in going abroad but scammers are so nasty and please be aware always, and last thing you have to wait for your approval from the Danish Immigration in Denmark maybe mostly for 1-2 months if your lucky.
After I had arrived in Denmark I was not aware that I will be staying out of my host family (another expenses) and paying for my own food (another expenses), I arrive January 17, 2007 and I lasted for ten months with my first family that means that I have been paying my own food for ten (10) months which is unlawful, paying my apartment which is another very unlawful for me, there was no problem with my first family actually but the problem is they have no spare room for their Au pair, they were giving 210 dkk for a bus card and that’s it. well my friend has given me some extra for my spare time in the morning that had helped me in my daily expenses but it was not enough and that extra (Black Money) I was talking about was unlawful and could get you in big trouble and be deported if caught by the local police automatically. I had to change three (3) apartments in just a ten (10) months for the reason I was looking for a place where it’s cheaper, The first apartment had cost me 1200 dkk monthly that lasted only for three (3) months, my second apartment had cost me 1600 dkk monthly and the last apartment of mine had cost me 2000 dkk (this one is a whole house I have rented for they are friends of my first host family) but then after all things that had happen I have realise that I was working had but all of my earnings are not for me but all had come to my expenses. even my salary I had to pay it for my rent, boy! I can tell you how sorry I was for me having a situation like that, and I was always saying to my self I was supposed to be in abroad to uplift myself but lucky me I was in pain hard work and misery, so then a few months later I decided to find a new host family and talked to my first host family about the situation that there was no problem having them as my host family but the problem is of me living out of the family paying my own rent and food which is supposed to be their responsibility. I have waisted no time and transferred as soon as possible to m new host family and I was happy having my own room and privacy, no more apartment fees, food allowance from your sweat and no more “Black Money“. I have just ended my contract last 26 of October 2008 and went home to my homeland Philippines.
For Au pairs, please if you have any problem regarding any situation either financially or personal with your host families talk to them politely about the problem, if they listen to you and understand you they will make a solution for the problem but if they will just do nothing and your salary is always delayed and etc…, waste no time find a new one which you feel comfortable to live with. If I could help about anything, please send me a mail via my email:
or leave a comments to this post.
For Families, Please do not delay the salary of your Au pairs for they have a family depending on them either they are the one who pays for the tuition of their sibling’s or the bread winner of the family. please be aware that your Au pairs are not the “murmuring type” for if we don’t like the way you treat us, we just stay quiet and find a new host family signed a contract before we tell you about the problem, of course we analyze first the situation for there are so many different types of problems faced by the Au pair and the families they are living with.
Au pairs always be informed, don’t be scammed, don’t pay for anyone who you think is not authorized for finding you a host family.
Well all for now and GOD Bless you all always,
His blog is very informative for those who are aspiring to work as au pair her in Denmark and other parts of the world.
Do you have any au pair stories to share here or in his blog happy or sad stories are welcome.
Good news!!!She started with a new host today so lets hope and pray for her that her new family will treat her nice and respect her rights and that she will enjoy her stay here in Denmark and finally learn the culture and visit the museums and nice historical places that she had not experienced before.