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In 2023, UNICEF Gulf expressed its support to the Parent-friendly Label program by noting the progress being made by the Abu Dhabi Early Childhood Authority when it comes to family-friendly policies

Parent-friendly Label

A voluntary program that provides a range of criteria that organizations can adopt, to be recognized and awarded by the Abu Dhabi Early Childhood Authority.

Download the Applicant Handbook here.

Check out the 1st cycle winners and their employees’ stories here


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Watch this video to learn more about the benefits


Working families in UAE often need to make difficult trade-offs in order to satisfy work requirements. They require greater support to thrive at work and at home. By encouraging parent-friendly workplaces, we can establish a work culture, policies and ways of working that are compassionate towards working parents of young children ages 0-8.

  1. Promote UAE as a parent-friendly place to work.
  2. Encourage the adoption of a parent-friendly workplace culture, policies, facilities and ways of working.

The case for change

In UAE today, a significant proportion of the population are stressed and struggle to spend time with their families due to their work.

Work Pressure

Second highest reason that Abu Dhabi residents claim to have high stress.

Residents cite time as the main factor that negatively affects family cohesion in Abu Dhabi.

Working women in Abu Dhabi report facing challenges with balancing work with family care.

Participants in the 2nd edition of the Quality of Life Survey, issued by the Department of Community Development, said they spend little to very little quality time with their families.

Parent friendly policies lead to better outcomes for our children

Parents need to play an active role during their children’s early development years as this period is considered to be the most influential in life, with the brain’s internal structure reaching 90% of its development by the age of 5 years.

When fathers are more engaged with their children, they will have better developmental outcomes. This includes fewer behavioral problems and improved cognitive and mental health in children.

Access to flexible working means more time with children for parents. If working from home, parents can save an average of 11 days per year by not commuting.

Abu Dhabi children spend an average of 60% – 70% of their week with their nannies and only 30%-40% with their parents.

Nursing children have substantial health benefits, such as reduced mortality rates, lower rates of acute infant chronic illnesses, and reduction of obesity by 26%.

There is promising evidence from around the world showing that improved parent-friendly policies result in better social and economic outcomes


Of companies with experience implementing parent-friendly policies found them cost-effective.


Reduction in female turnover when Google increased paid maternity leave from 12 to 18 weeks.


Productivity in 150 federal entities in the United States increased by 30% after the introduction of alternative work schedules.


Of Australian employees consider extended parental leave a factor that increases company attractiveness.


Reduction in the likelihood of mothers experiencing depression throughout their lives due to extended parental leave.

Nursing Support

Improved nursing support leads to decrease in employee sick leave, as employees miss work less often because breastfed infants experience fewer and shorter illnesses.

Winners of the 1st Cycle

These organizations were recognized for their parent-friendly policies and practices as well as their supportive culture that demonstrates understanding and compassion towards parents of young children. Their innovative practices were also celebrated. By earning this Label, they are helping us establish a strong foundation for the next generation.

Their journey does not end with winning the Label. It is one of continuous learning, improvement, and growth where their experiences and knowledge can inspire others and enable positive change.


Number of Children Impacted Positively During the 1st Cycle


This is based on the number of parents of young children working for the applicants and winners in the 1st cycle.