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Tips on Finding the Right Babysitter

Tips on Finding the Right Babysitter

Choosing the right babysitter can be one of the scariest decisions you will make as a parent. After all, your children are the most important people in your life. It’s up to you to keep them safe and healthy. Finding a sitter can be difficult, especially if you are new to your community.

If you don’t know where to look for a sitter, here are some suggestions:

  • Contact your HTC or local bleeding disorders organization to find other parents of children with bleeding disorders who might have older children who could babysit
  • Ask your neighbors or coworkers for recommendations
  • Ask at your house of worship or contact your doctor’s office for suggestions
  • It’s possible that staff at a day care facility or after-school care program in which your child might already be enrolled will babysit or they may be able to recommend someone who would
  • Look into professional services that offer prescreened care providers
  • Local community centers, hospitals, YMCAs/YWCAs, and the American Red Cross might be able to assist you in finding a babysitter. Often, these organizations offer specialized training to prepare new babysitters and keep lists of participants who have completed their courses. Some organizations provide certification in infant and child CPR

Questions for Potential Babysitters

No matter how you go about finding a babysitter, you will want to interview that person and check references to be certain that you are comfortable with the sitter. It’s a good idea to have your child around when you talk to each candidate so you can see how your child reacts to the potential sitter and how the sitter interacts with your child.

Here is a list of questions you might ask a potential babysitter:

  • Have you ever worked as a babysitter? Describe your experience. How old were the kids? How long did you babysit for them?
  • Have you ever babysat for a child with a health condition?
  • Why do you enjoy working with children? What age groups do you most enjoy/least enjoy? Why? Which age group are you most comfortable with? Do you prefer to work with boys or girls? Why?
  • Have you taken any of the babysitter training courses, such as the American Red Cross Babysitter’s Training course, the Child Care and Babysitting Safety (CABS) course, the Safe Sitter® program, or the 4-H Babysitting course? What other type of child care training do you have?
  • Are you certified in CPR/basic first aid?
  • Have you ever been in an emergency situation while babysitting? How did you handle it?
  • Under what type of situation would you call me? At what point would you call the pediatrician or 911?
  • Do you live nearby? Can you provide your own transportation? Are you familiar with the city/neighborhood?
  • Do you have any health restrictions that could affect your ability to babysit?
  • Is there an adult or family member nearby in the event of an emergency whom you could contact?
  • Do you know how to change a diaper?
  • Have you ever administered medicine to a child you were babysitting?
  • Are you comfortable being in my home at night or for an extended period?
  • Do you know how to prepare a simple meal?
  • Do you know how to feed an infant? A toddler? Do you know what to do if a child is choking?
  • How do you handle discipline? What will you do if my child will not listen or exhibits bad behavior?
  • How comfortable are you with pets? Do you have any fear of pets?
  • How do you feel about naps, candy/snacks, TV/computers/videos?
  • Are you prompt?
  • What sort of activities do you normally do with children my child’s age?
  • Do you smoke?
  • What hours and days of the week are you available to babysit?
  • Do you have other obligations that will impact your hours/daily availability?
  • What are your rates?
  • Do you have a list of references?