For over 80 years the government of Finland have given a maternity kit containing around 80 items useful for babies, to expectant Finnish mothers. The gift has been designed so the box itself can be used as a cot for newborns, and the maternity kit has been credited with cutting infant mortality rates and raising life chances.
Inspired by these Scandinavian baby boxes, in October 2016 Nicola Sturgeon, the Scottish first minister, announced that similar boxes would be gifted to Mums in Scotland. The project started on the 1st of January 2017, and the first mums in the pilot areas of Clackmannanshire and Orkney have received their boxes.
The box contains a play mat, a changing mat, a digital thermometer, a fleece jacket, several babygrows, a hooded bath towel, a reusable nappy and liners, a baby book and an organic sponge. As with the Nordic scheme, the boxes are suitable for a baby to sleep in and contain cot sheets, a mattress and a blanket. A Scots dialect poem entitled “Welcome Wee One” by national poet Jackie Kay is also included. You know what I’m going to say… it’s a great idea, but if they had only thought to add in a Baby Feed Wheel, it would be pretty much perfect!