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As a nanny and babysitter of 10 + years and now with my second child on the way I have found that it’s hard to find just the right sitter for your family. What you may need or want is not necessarily what someone else may need or want or even give. As a military wife, I know how hard it can be to find a new sitter with all the moves the military makes you do. So how do you find and learn to trust someone to watch your kids after a move to a new town? Here’s a few tips to get you started!
How to Find a Babysitter:
1.Utilize the People in Your Community.
Find the best people in your area by visiting sites like www.care.com and www.sittercity.com (Sitter City is free for military families). Get to know people at your church (church nursery workers are a good place to start!), and in your neighborhood. Look for local area Facebook groups and websites that may have trained sitters and post an ad of what you are looking for. Look for babysitting co-ops in your area or ask friends if they are willing to trade services. Utilize the people in your community, they are out there you just have to find them!
2. Interview, Interview, Interview!
Babysitting is a job and just like any other job, people should have to interview for the opportunity to work with your family. Once you have found some people you think you might like to work with, invite them over for an interview. If you are not comfortable having someone you don’t know at your house, ask them if they would be willing to meet your family or just you and your husband at a public place – maybe a coffee shop or bookstore, or even a play place or park if you have the children with you.
In in the interview, get to know the sitter being interviewed. Find out about their experience, be up front about hourly rates, and ask for references from previous families they have worked with. References are important, as these are the families that have worked with your sitter in the past and can give you insight into how well they work with children. Have them meet the kids and see how they react and play with them if you are comfortable. Remember to find out if they are certified in CPR and any other things you may want as well.
3. Invite the Sitter Over for a Test-Run!
Once you have found someone you think you would like to work with, invite them over to watch the kids while you are at home. This way you can see them in action, keep an eye on them, and see how well they do with your kids. They can get used to your family and your family can get to know them! Take this time to get some much needed housework done, relax, or do something else around the house.
Once you do the test-run, and are still comfortable about everything, then you now have a new sitter! You can start out slowly for as long as you want to leave your kids with them, or you can go all out, it’s up to you and how comfortable you are. If you have to work up to it, that’s ok too! This process has worked for me to find numerous babysitters for my child and also for me as I worked to find babysitting jobs in the past. Good luck in your babysitter hunt. I hope you find as many good ones as I have!
What about YOU? What are some ways you use to find a good sitter?