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Friday, November 30, 2012

Earn extra money this holiday season by becoming a certified Red Cross babysitter/caregiver

Tomorrow is December 1st! It's almost hard to believe, but it's here. This time of year is probably one of the busiest, especially for parents: there are holiday parties to attend, after-school concerts and activities, and of course the need to do some "Santa" shopping sans-kiddos. With all the running around that most families will do from now until New Year's, the opportunities for competent babysitters definitely should be picking up. Combine that with the fact that most young people will have some time off from school, it's a great time to make some extra spending money by picking up some new gigs.

I myself babysat from about the age of 10 until I was 16, and had a few regulars. I've done anything from a late New Year's Eve night to an "au pair" week at the beach with the family, being an extra helping hand with the three little ones. (That's me in the collage to the right, with some of "my" kids, ages 6, 3 and 1 and the time, circa 1995.) Even though I was young, the parents felt comfortable with me, especially because I took the Red Cross Babysitting course (held at our local YWCA) where I learned everything from basic First Aid/child CPR to house fire safety and everything in between. (I even still vividly remember the video on how to contain a fire by shutting doors and stuffing towels/blankets underneath them!)

Designed especially for young people (ages 11 to 15), the Red Cross Caregiving & Babysitting course prepares you to become a safe and competent babysitter - and of course, shows parents that you take this responsibility seriously. You'll gain practical knowledge such as feeding and diapering infants, and confidence in your skills through videos, hands-on activities and class discussions. You can also sign up for a course which also includes Pediatric First Aid/CPR to earn these certifications as well.

I highly recommend going through the training if you're considering babysitting as a side job - you'll be more comfortable and prepared, plus, you can make the case for that extra dollar or two an hour that you'll well deserve for being the best babysitter possible! Learn more about these and our other training courses at redcross.org/take-a-class.

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