From a press release issued by Cultural Care: CAMBRIDGE, Mass., April 10 /PRNewswire/
A young journalism student from Natal, Brazil who has shown compassion and dedication in his daily care for a special needs boy, has earned the distinction of being named the"International Au Pair of the Year". [Check out the YouTube video, which is a bit of promotional material for Cultural Care, but also tells the great story.]
Francisco Ricardo Silva de Araujo, au pair to the Boyer family of Richmond, Virginia was presented with the award at the 15th Annual International Au Pair Association Conference in Vienna, Austria on March 25th. The "Au Pair of the Year" Award honors au pairs who are caring, dependable and exceptional providers of childcare to their host family.
The Boyer family nominated Ricardo for this prestigious award because of his devotion to their son, Taylor. Taylor is multi-handicapped and does not speak. Ricardo wrote in his finalist essay, "I want to thank Taylor for all that he has taught me. His disability it is not an obstacle for his happiness. I came to America as an au pair, and I will leave a better human." A student of journalism at Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte and former primary school assistant, Ricardo became an au pair for the opportunity to live in the United States and become part of a real American family.
The International Au Pair Association established the Au Pair of the Year Award to recognize the many great young men and women participating in the au pair program. Ricardo was selected out of hundreds of nominations from around the world from more than 50,000 host families.
"Ricardo is an exceptional young man, full of compassion, patience, gentleness, and a desire to see the disabled enjoy a life like yours and mine as much as possible. He never tires of encouraging Taylor to meet his challenges and reach beyond them whenever possible," says Kim Boyer, Ricardo’s host mother. "He has truly enhanced Taylor’s life in a way I never thought possible."
The International Au Pair Association is the global trade association for qualified au pair agencies actively engaged in the au pair industry. http://iapa.org