Family-Friendly Spaces Sharing Conference 2022: Working Together Hand in Hand to Achieve Shared Benefits

The Family-Friendly Spaces Program Enters its 7th Year, Continuing to Benefit Factories, Buyers, Workers, and Their Children

On the 19th August 2022, we held our 7th Family-Friendly Spaces (FFS) Sharing Conference in Dongguan. The conference gathered over 160 participants, including representatives from factories and brands, a number of invited attendees and children from 2 participating factories, who later performed on stage, contributing to the warm and celebratory atmosphere.

To kick-start the Conference, Carmel Giblin, the President and CEO of the ICTI Ethical Toy Program (IETP), and Albert Yeung, the General Manager of Dongguan Golden Cup Printing Company Limited, gave their opening speeches to welcome all the attendees.

Carmel expressed how FFS was a program which achieved shared & measurable social and business benefits for all stakeholders, including improved worker retention, satisfaction and attraction rates; And how the program was a great example of how brands can show they are committed to meeting their corporate social responsibility commitments.

As a Factory General Manager, Albert affirmed that the FFS program creates numerous benefits for the factories, workers, and children. He thanked IETP for creating and promoting the FFS program and for providing safe, well-equipped spaces to the children of factory workers, allowing them to play and study and while their parents work. He praised the program as a great childcare solution for factory workers during the summer holidays.

This year’s program content was introduced by Anita Lo, IETP’s Program Director. She shared that in addition to the expected educational activities and fun excursions, this year, the spaces held an environmental competition, inspired by the Environmental Assessment (EA) IETP launched earlier this year.  The competition was designed to increase the children’s awareness of their impact on the environment, prizes were awarded at the Conference for the two main categories: environmental ambassadors and environmental arts & crafts.

Following the environmental competition prize-giving ceremony, the attendees were shown a video which followed the lives and development of 4 children who have participated in the FFS program over many years. Through the video, we learned how all 4 children benefitted from the Spaces, improving their development and confidence. One child, Xiao Min was very shy and timid when she joined FFS at just 4 years old, after attending the program for 7 years she has become a confident, lively young girl who even performed on stage and presented at the Sharing Conference.

Three children who attended the conference expressed how much they enjoyed attending the Family-Friendly Spaces program, they were grateful to be able to see their parents more and make new friends – and also loved receiving all the toys and prizes provided by the program sponsors!

In addition to heart-felt experiences and testimonies from the program participants, data and statistics were shown to show the attendees including the measurable benefits and impacts of repeat Family-Friendly Spaces. Anita also shared that since 2016, more than 4,500 workers and 4,000 children have benefitted from the program, and 16 factories have repeatedly joined the program at least 3 times.

The conference was a great opportunity for IETP to share an update on their Family-Friendly Factories (FFF) program; Nancy Chen, Program Support and Engagement Supervisor, presented data from a factory management & worker survey conducted during the FFF pilot. She explained how after implementing Family-Friendly Policies (FFP), 85% of interviewed employees said that FFP helped them take care of their children or families.

Representatives from the LEGO Group, Xuhui Parent-Child Education, UNICEF China, Ying De Best Top Toys Company Limited, Broadway Precision (Shenzhen) Company Limited, Combine Will (Cangwu) Industrial Company Limited, and Dongguan Golden Cup Printing Company Limited were invited to the conference to share their experiences and thoughts on the program.

Claudia Zhang, Responsible Sourcing Manager of the LEGO Group, shared how LEGO has continually supported the FFS program due to its effectiveness; And Ellen Cheng, Corporate Social Responsibility Specialist of UNICEF China, explained the importance of promoting early childhood development through implementing Family-Friendly Policies (FFP).

In addition to this, representatives from four participating factories gave presentations at the Conference. Sharing best practices for Family-Friendly Factories (FFF) and explaining the benefits of joining FFF for both factory management and the workers.

Sharing from Xiao Min who has attended the FFS program for 7 years

At the end of the Sharing Conference, Carmel Giblin, the President and CEO of the IETP, expressed her gratitude to all the factories, sponsors and participants of the program, and to the attendees for their participation. She encouraged buyers and factories to register for the FFS & FFF programs next year!

If you would like to learn more or sponsor our worker well-being 3-year program plan, please send an email to

Read this next