Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Four Types of Nanny Support Groups

Social, educational, playgroups, and online groups.

Photo of Nanny Alliance of New York and New Jersey horseback riding.

Joyce Farmer is a nanny and previous board member of National Association of Nannies (NAN). In an article that was formerly posted on the NAN website Ms. Farmer described the three basic nanny support groups as: social, educational, or playgroups. Below we add the online nanny support group to the list.

Social:
Social groups do not offer speakers or educational opportunities. They provide a local social gathering of nannies. Nannies typically can get more feedback in a social situation than from a structured or lecture situation.

Educational:
Educational groups usually have structure, an agenda, and a time set aside for a speaker or presentation, thus providing an educational opportunity at each meeting. There can still be time left for social purposes or a social event can be scheduled for another time
each month.

Playgroup:
This is a small group, typically meeting once a week, including charges. There can be organized activities or just free play for the children. Nannies can network and talk while their charges gain the social contact of playmates.


Online Groups:
There are many nanny groups formed at www.groups.yahoo.com. The benefit of using Yahoo Groups is that it is a free service with no long distance phone charges. Just remember that when using the Internet, you need to use caution. Online nanny support groups often have privacy and confidentiality issues and groups frequently come up with guidelines that help control issues. Stop by again on Sunday February 28, 2010 for a listing of online nanny support groups.

Stop by tomorrow for suggested bylaws and guidelines for nanny support groups.

What type of nanny support group activities do you prefer?

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

Any of these types of groups would be helpful to me. I lost my job and the family treated me bad. Now I want to find supportive nannies but can't find them out here. I'm so upset I can't sleep. All the nannies I know are friends with the family that fired me and I'm not comfortable confiding in them.

Anyone know of nanny support groups in Nevada?

Sad Sandi
Las Vegas NV

Anonymous said...

For professional reasons, I prefer anonymous online discussion boards to address any problems with a position. So many nannies either have it directly in their contractors or it is assumed that they will not discuss their jobs in public settings.

Sometimes having your name and face out there could come back to bite you. There are all types of suggestions on being aware of digital dirt, and what to post and not post on Facebook, Myspace or whatever. Same for the online nanny discussion boards, how do you know if someone is a nanny, an agent, or a parent.

Eva said...

I don't like the online communities they take too much time, but I can see why some nannies like them. I hated when ladies were flaming and being nasty thinking they were anonymous but weren't so my agency gave me a list of ladies nearby they placed also and met 2 nice nannies that way.

Re online so many of my nanny friends put photos of the kids on facebook. There is nothing wrong with that if it is OK with the parents. Just ask the parents first. Too many dangers online, don't want to risk getting the kids photos on the internet and losing control of the photos.

I wish I knew of a nanny support group near me that I liked. But,I haven't really found one I like yet.

AuPairDebbie said...

I met a lot of au pairs via my agency and that way I feel like I have support of friends going through a similar experience.

Anonymous said...

I prefer them all. As I believe it takes many different and varied opportunties to be the best nanny I can be.
I enjoy the encouragement of my fellow nannies to try new activities that I would have never done on my own. Such as rock climbing, water tubing, and scrap-booking just to name a few.
~Andrea, Nanny-Ridgewood, NJ

Tobago Nanny said...

I do NOT know ANY nannies who keep any info confidential.

Anonymous above wrote that it's assumed or written in our contracts to be professionally confidential.

99.9% of the nannies and aupairs I know absolutely spread gossip constantly about their employers. Everyone spreading all the details to everyone else on the playground or out to coffee.

I don't think any nannies I know think that it's isn't appropriate to tell everything.

They also haven't a clue about nanny support groups and when I have tried to invite them to join they always find excuses. They aren't only too busy, they couldn't care less about their profession. They put in as little effort as possible and aren't professional.

That's why I like this newsletter because there are definitely a few professionals out there. But I have never ran into them locally.

Anonymous said...

The comments are very strange to me. I love love love all the nannies that work really hard to organize events for other nannies.

I have not been able to afford INA or NANC conferences but I love the idea of these people working to help the nanny profession.

Sad, but, it's true that 99.9% of nannies never heard of INA NANC or nanny support groups. I will make a better effort to try to join a group. Thanks for the info.

REally very few nannies know anything about these groups. What do you think we need to do to get the word out? Got to do something different than already being done since no one I know, knows about these groups.

Reyna Horowitz, NY NY

djeterfann2 said...

I run an online community for nannies Worldwidenannies@yahoogroups.com. My group is a free online nanny support group. We have rules that help the group run smooth. We rarely have issues with the girls and if there is the discussion is closed my me or my moderator who are very active in the group. At between 700-1000 posts a month I can tell you these groups are very valuable. I have made friend throguh the group and some have been momeber for the whole ten years we have been around. Many nannies cannot afford to pay for a group support system and these groups allow them to speak to people who have jobs like them and get advice from nannies with over 15 years experiance. It can be lonely being a nanny if there arent many in your area. Live support groups are great but if there arent many nannies in your area then it can be extra hard. There are groups with gossip and such you just have to weed them out when looking for the right fit. Im all for the support groups. Anything that gives you a place to vent out with people who do the same thing as you helps. We dont have an office or office friends to vent to.
Jenn
worldwidenannies@yahoogroup.com OWNER
Nanny for 19 years

Anonymous said...

I am a nanny that was established in this profession before the development of the internet, online support groups, and discussion boards.

While I find some sites to be informative and helpful for the profession, there are other times when I realize I can learn more productive information on child development at non-nanny sites. Plus, this is concrete information that I can take back to my employers as opposed to responses from anonymous posters where we don't know credentials.

Plus, I have taken on some very tough assignments in the past and I find sometimes I don't have the patience for some of the rants and vents over something that seems minor. I think this creates an atmosphere at times where nannies feed off of each others problems and it seems like issues with their jobs become "bigger".

I personally have a lot of hobbies and interests to keep my busy with non nanny types and I find it is nice to not have to talk shop.