If you’re an actor and parent in LA then chances are you’ve struggled to find last-minute child care at some point. It can add stress to an already stressful situation. So when the awesome aunties and uncles who usually help out aren’t available, what do you do?
Personally I’m all for taking my daughter to an audition if I have no other choice because hey, we do what we gotta do right? But if taking your child to an audition isn’t an option, then hopefully this list will get you started on a backup plan. All of these businesses offer some kind of part-time, on-call or drop off option which is perfect for the freelance nature of our business. I hope you find this list helpful!
These are just suggestions so please do your due diligence when screening child care providers. I’m sure I missed a bunch so let me know if you have suggestions and I’ll add them to the list!
1. Educated Nannies – Full service nanny and babysitting company in the LA area that offers date night, after school, events, full-time and part-time care. Visit EducatedNannies.com for more info.
2. WeVillage – Flexible childcare in Los Angeles! WeVillage is located in Studio City and offers drop off care options, as well as daily care, camps, preschool and date nights for ages 6 weeks to 12-years-old. I have personally used this business and I can tell you we love it! Booking time is fast and easy. And Chan is around other kids doing arts and crafts, play time and more while I’m at an audition or meeting. Visit wevillage.com for details.
3. Helpr App – Last minute childcare at your fingertips. Here’s how it works: You download the Helpr App, then use their system to book a sitter for the time you need. You can save your favorite sitters and reuse them over again, or try a new one. This is very helpful in a pinch and Chan has loved all the sitters we’ve met through Helpr. They also often have discount codes so make sure you sign up for their email list. You can download it in the app store.
4. College Nannies & Tutors has a part-time option for sitters. The website describes it as being for parents with “unpredictable schedules.” Hello actors! They also have service areas all over LA.
5. The Babysitting Company is based in Florida and offers services in LA. They have an “as-needed” option as well as “last-minute.” But, they do require a 4 hour minimum on all sitters. So grab coffee after your audition and relax!
6. Penny & Peggy Nairn 24/7 Child Care is deep in the valley, but they take ages newborn through 12. So if you’re in a pinch it might be worth the drive. The website says they have separate classes for all age groups and meals are provided for no additional charge. It’s probably not kale, but I’m sure it’s just as good.
7. Based in Pasadena, Meredith and Co. provides on-call service to those actor parents who don’t live west of the 101. Meredith offers care for parents “in a pinch” and there is a flat fee of $20 for each sitter with a 2 hour minimum. Each caregiver is selected and vetted by Meredith, who is also a caregiver. We have used them several times and have adored each sitter. Highly recommend!
8. Facebook has several closed or secret parenting actor groups. Inside these groups parents post about what auditions they’ll be at the next day in the hopes someone is willing to connect with them and watch their kid while they run in the room. Ask around…I’m sure one of your friends is holding out on you. In fact Motherhood in Hollywood has a secret group for parents who find themselves in a pickle with an audition. Just let me know if you’re interested and I’ll add you! There’s also a closed group called the Improv Babysitters for parents to connect with other actors who are babysitting on the side. Circle of life!
9. We Rock The Spectrum has several locations around LA, but I picked the Glendale one because it’s my fave. Each location has a “break time” option for parents who need to drop off their kids ages 2 and up for a few hours. Priced only $12 an hour. But unless you’re really in a pickle, I would say this is a better option for kids 4 and up as some of the equipment can be a bit advanced for toddlers. Go and check one out to see if it’s a good fit.
10. LA Sitter – Thanks to Jessica from LA Sitter for letting me know about this one! They offer last-minute babysitting services, overnight care, nanny care plus a few more options. Their website explains you can call them or fill out an online booking request, then choose from several sitter options and confirm your appointment. I haven’t tried this one yet but it’s nice to know this service is available. Visit Lasitter.com for more info.
11. Bambino App – Several moms in the LA Actor Parents Facebook group suggested the Bambino App (thank you!). The website says this is a unique child care service because it’s based on recommendations from people in your neighborhood. The app connects you with sitters your friends and neighbors have recommended and you can book through the app. However I feel like this would only be truly beneficial if there are several people in your area using the app. Check out more details at bambinoapp.com.
Have a childcare suggestion for actors or parents in the industry? Let me know and I’ll add it to the list!