Mother’s Helper Advice

Our family has been struggling to find babysitters for some time but I’m thinking what we’re really looking for is a “Mother’s Helper” instead? I’m a stay at home Mom with a 4yr old boy (attending a small Preschool pod part time), 2yr old boy and 3mo old, with no help from family or friends. I’m in need of someone to play with the older children so I can focus on the baby, or get things done at home. Ideally, 3x a week for 1-4hrs to play with only the 2yr old or both the 2 and 4yr old. We previously tried another sitter a few times in this same “position” but since I was home I ended up changing the 2yr old’s diapers, prepping and serving meals/ snacks, providing new activities, etc throughout the “babysitting” time. This was despite being in a different room of the house, working on the computer, asking to not be disturbed unless necessary. My kids were bored and we still paid $25/hr for this “Nanny”. So, it really seems like for the level of responsibility I’m expecting, an older kid might be able to do the job better with a much more reasonable rate?  

My questions are- how to find such a person? I haven’t really seen any ads like that here so is BPN the best place to look? And secondly, what is average pay like for this type of position? I would imagine with schools not being in person there must be local teens or other young people available who could help another Covid conscious, socially distancing family? We’re located in Crockett and have a very open home with a fenced deck and other outdoor play space so we could even plan for the majority of time to be outside, or with masks. 
Thank you in advance for any help or insights!

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RE: Mother’s Helper Advice ()

My college-age daughter has been a mother's helper twice. The first job she found on The second on Nextdoor. She was most recently paid $15/hour for two kids, although she was willing to work for $12 while the mother was home. My daughter says it is really hard to keep younger kids from wanting their mom when they know the mom is home. I suggest taking the baby out, for a long walk or to drive around, so your other children really know you are not available. Also have the mother's helper take the older kids for a walk or to a local park for part of the time.