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PayPal and Microsoft’s employee holiday gift is a game changer for working parents

Holidays are stressful in general, with everyone trying to shop, tick things off their to-do list and attend holiday outings, but they can be especially taxing for working parents of young children who need to find child care in order to free up their time to get things done and enjoy the season. As part of their health and wellness initiatives, companies such as PayPal and Microsoft are stepping up this holiday season to relieve some of this burden.

The online payments company and tech giant have teamed up with Bright Horizons, a provider of employer-sponsored child care, to hire and pay for babysitters so employees with young children can shop after hours and on weekends and attend the holiday party.

For Dijana Kvakic and Kasey De Goey, both customer solutions specialists in PayPal’s Omaha office, this was the perfect holiday gift.

Kvakic had at first declined when the email came around the office last month notifying PayPay employees of this year‘s annual holiday party. As a single mother of two children, she said it was just too costly to hire child care for the evening.

De Goey hesitated to respond at all until the news. Having moved to Omaha a year earlier, she has no family nearby and often struggles to find child care for her 18-month-old son beyond the typical working hours. “Hiring a babysitter during those hours would have been too [cost]-prohibitive,” she said.

PayPal’s announcement that they were teaming up with Bright Horizons and paying for babysitters in employees‘ homes or at the hotel where the party was being held was a game changer.

“Having this option is one less stressful thing to worry about,” said De Goey. “It lets us know that PayPal is a company that cares about its employees. I’m not just another employee that works in the call center but an individual that ne time to themselves to relax, go out and have fun.”

Kvakic agreed: “It’s a huge weight off my shoulders, and now I’ll be able to enjoy my time with my colleagues [and] network with new co-workers. It would have been a lost opportunity for me if I couldn’t attend,” she said.