16-year-old DD is doing French A' level and considering reading French at Uni. She'd love to get some work experience in France over the summer holidays. We've wondered about au-pairing, but worry that she's a bit young and also that 6-weeks won't be long enough. Anyone got any ideas?
Hi, long time ago (30 years ago) I worked on a colonie de vacances one summer. Residential subsidised French kids holiday camp - also an option for her to go on one herself as participant. I went as a participant for 3 weeks aged about 15, - marvellous time, was only foreigner, but loads to do and far more choice of who to hang out with than for example going on an exchange with one person, - then went back to the same camp as a helper aged 16. I wasn't old enough to take on major responsibilities and didn't get paid but had free board/lodging, but helped out in kitchen, second person leading activities with an experienced animateur etc. Try a google search for colonie de vacances, - but thinking about it she might try it as a participant first as it might be quite a big step as her first venture independently?
Also worth searching for Leonardo work placements (EU funded work experience abroad, not sure if its still going). If there is a UK partner near you they might be short of participants for the French wing, and she could join their placement.
Also worth exploring voluntary work camps based in France, did these in Germany. International but the language of camp tends to be the language of the country, or was then.
I would encourage her in this though, - my time as a participant on the colonie de vacances made a massive difference to my language skills, but more to my confidence that I could communicate even if I didn't have the language or the right word. Studied Languages and have worked widely through other languages since. Good luck.