Jumana Al Darwish

The Happy Box delivers parcels of joy to Dubai’s little ones
ByAhlan! Live ReporterThursday , 19 March 2015
Jumana Al Darwish
© ITP Images

Becoming a self-employed Happiness Officer was daunting. Seeing our personalised edu-toys business, The Happy Box, become such a success vindicates my decision. We’ve received 15 international franchise requests in our first year. We launched in 2014 and hope to go global in 2015. 
Sweat, tears and time go into setting up a start-up. Owning your own business is incredibly fulfilling but challenging. The work doesn’t really end, so sometimes I have to force myself to take the night off. 
Ever since I started The Happy Box, I barely sleep. My co-founder and sister-in-law, Linda, lives in New York. Because of the time difference, we brainstorm and plan in the evenings.  
I make it a point to get a weekly manicure. It’s quiet downtime for myself. But I can’t resist taking my three-year old, Ayla, with me!
In Dubai, relationships are key. It’s all about who you know. We have been able to grow and been presented with fantastic opportunities thanks to the network we spent time solidifying .
Every child should have a copy of BJ Novak’s The Book with No Pictures. It makes my daughter dissolve into giggles; reading it together is the best part of our day. 
My husband Suhail is a huge inspiration. He’s a successful businessman himself; a real go-getter who provides me with support and great suggestions. 

WEBSITE: handsfreemama.com  
I check this inspiring blog daily; founder Rachel goes through the same challenges all mothers face. 
TWITTER: @honesttoddler
Its humour keeps me sane as I realise my daughter is not the only crazy toddler out there. 
INSTAGRAM: @pixiecurtis 
A hilarious toddler’s account managed by her mum. The posts are laugh-out-loud funny.

WEBSITE: thehappybox.ae 
FACEBOOK: @thehappyboxdxb