Our Approach



Family Forward NC is an innovative business initiative to improve children’s health and well-being and keep North Carolina’s businesses competitive. By increasing family friendly workplace practices, business, families and our state all win.


Through research and the exchange of ideas among business leaders, employees and organizations, Family Forward NC promotes workforce investments that support children’s healthy development and a competitive business environment, both in the short and long term. That’s a goal we can all rally behind.


Family Forward NC is an initiative of the North Carolina Early Childhood Foundation with founding sponsorship from Blue Cross NC.


Though the number of working families has risen dramatically over the last few decades, family initiatives have not kept pace. The immediate and long-term business advantages of these offerings are well-documented.

  • Family-friendly workplaces provide a competitive advantage in attracting and retaining talent, increasing productivity and employee satisfaction and reducing absenteeism.
  • Workplaces that support parents have a direct impact on their children’s health, well-being and future academic and career achievement. These benefits all come back to business in its future workforce.
  • Family-friendly practices support children’s future academic and career success. These benefits all come back to business by building a strong future workforce.


Family Forward NC is business-led change. We’ll listen and learn, educate and engage and ultimately support more North Carolina businesses in adopting research-based family friendly practices.

Research: All of our efforts will be grounded in research. Family Forward NC will focus on practices that are proven to benefit both child outcomes AND the bottom line for businesses.

Listen, Learn, Engage: We will be informed by our research findings from interviews with 300 NC businesses about their practices including their motivations and barriers to creating family friendly workplaces. We will continue engaging and listening to and learning from businesses of all sizes across our state. And we’ll look to our Advisory Council to help guide the work.

Case Studies: We’ll share stories of businesses and employees benefiting from family friendly workplaces. We’ll share the opportunities AND the challenges business leaders face.

Guide: Guided by the research and what we continue to learn from businesses and employees, we will publish a Guide to Family Forward workplaces, outlining a range of practices that improve child health and well-being, and keep businesses competitive.

Recognition: We will promote small, mid, and large-size businesses and associations endorsing the Guide and businesses adopting a range of its recommendations. Those endorsing the Guide and adopting recommendations will receive special recognition on the Family Forward NC website and other materials.

 Learn More

Family Forward NC Overview

Social Media Posts

kidoNomiCs Announcement


Research & Launch Press Release



NC Business
Research Findings


Research Basis for Family
Friendly Policies and Practices

NCECF Presentation
at kidoNomiCs

Research Presentation
at kidoNomiCs















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