EXPERT Q&A

Is joining a nanny association worth the cost?

A nanny association can bring value to both new and experienced nannies—especially those who want to be involved. Learn more about nanny association from CareNectar expert Emily Louange!

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Question

I’ve been in the nanny profession for about three years, but am not quite sure I’m ready to call it my career. I want to start learning about new opportunities in the field, and am wondering if joining a nanny association will help with this. Can you explain the different professional nanny associations, and how joining one might benefit me and my career?

Answer

What a great question! As with any professional association, it is wise to evaluate and assess the association before handing over your hard-earned money to become a member. And I do know that caregivers work hard for their wages. They earn every penny and then some!

The two major nanny associations are the International Nanny Association (INA) and the US Nanny Association (USNA), described below.

  1. International Nanny Association (INA): Founded in 1985, the INA is a reputable organization that defines itself as “the umbrella association for the in-home childcare industry” and provides information, education, and guidance to professional nannies and the general public. Depending on member type, membership costs range from $55 to $1,395 annually and include a range of benefits—such as educational webinars, savings on conference dues, access to job postings, and business and mentorship supports. The INA also details recommended practices for professionals in the in-home childcare industry, icnluding nannies, nanny employers, newborn care specialists, and nanny placement agencies.
  2. US Nanny Association (USNA): A newer grassroots organization founded in 2019, the USNA aims to advance nanny skills and elevate the childcare profession akin to other trades and professions. In addition to offering regular meetups nationwide and an annual conference, the USNA offers three credential programs, including the Nanny and Childcare Provider Certification, Newborn and Infant Care Professional Certification, and the Professional Nanny and Childcare Provide Credential Certification. Membership costs range from $45 to $325 annually, depending on membership category.

Joining a nanny association could be a good way for you to explore the profession and determine if it is the right career for you. Membership in associations provides opportunities for networking with other professionals and childcare experts which can help you identify areas of specialization and learning to advance your individual career path. Membership also offers access to a range of educational resources, articles, and webinars that can equip you with the tools needed to succeed in the profession.

This being said, participation as a member in a professional association or at a conference is never a waste as long as you are willing to actively contribute and learn something. You definitely get more out of it when you put in the time and effort. As an example, if you join an association, be sure to attend their meet-ups and conferences to take full advance of their professional learning opportunities. This will only bring more value for the money you are investing, even if it is a one-year membership just to feel out whether or not this is the career for you. If you feel that this year you just won’t have the time to make use of all the association has to offer, then this may not be the right time to join.

We suggest that you continue doing your research to figure out if and which nanny association might be the best one for you. Be sure you have time to network, learn, and participate in order to make the most of what they have to offer. This will help make sure your money is spent wisely and that it’s an investment from which you will receive the greatest benefits.

Please reach out with other questions. And remember, the CareNectar team is here for you!

Meet The Expert


Emily Louange

Emily has held positions as a care provider for over two decades. She’s managed care as a nanny, home health aide, and as a RN after earning her Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing. When she became a working mother, she was astonished by the insufficient systems in place to support and guide families. She strongly believes that our children and those who care for them deserve better support and solutions. Called to do something to help; she founded a childcare networking platform, Via The Village, served on the Board of Directors for the US Nanny Association, and helped start CareNectar!