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Cardboard Boxes For Finnish Babies

Finnish Newborns Sleep in a Cardboard Box For a Good Reason

Source: Facebook user Kela-Kerttu

Could a simple cardboard box be all a baby needs to get a healthy start in life? For 75 years, Finland has provided all expectant moms — regardless of their economic status — with a maternity box filled with a selection of clothes, bedding, and products used in the first few months of a baby's life. The only catch is that the moms-to-be must attend a prenatal appointment prior to their fourth month of pregnancy to receive the box. The result: in the 1930s, Finland saw 65 out of 1,000 babies die each year; today, the welfare state's infant mortality rate is 3.4 deaths per 1,000 births — half the rate in the United States.

The maternity box, which started out as a government handout to low-income families, became universal in 1949 and is now a source of pride for the country — the box is a guarantee that all Finnish babies have a healthy start in life and a safe place to sleep (the box is credited with a decrease in cosleeping). The contents of the box have evolved over the years — it was originally packed with cloth diapers, switched to disposable in the late 1960s, but returned to cloth a dozen years ago, while formula and pacifiers were recently removed to help promote breastfeeding — but much remains the same.

Source: Facebook user Kela-Kerttu

Pregnant moms have the choice of accepting the box or opting for a cash grant of 140 euros (approximately $183), but with the box filled with gender-neutral bodysuits, a sleeping bag, outdoor gear, baby bathing products, diapers, bedding, and a small mattress, an overwhelming majority opt for the traditional box.

It's quite an interesting concept if you think about it: a government providing families with the necessities to give tots a healthy start.

Intrigued about the idea? One Finnish mom did a box reveal for all to see! Here's what she received:

The Box

Source: Imgur

A Snowsuit, Hat, Mittens, and Another Warm Bodysuit

Source: Imgur

A Sleeping Bag and Sheet

Source: Imgur

Hats, a Balaclava, Pads, Socks, Tights, and a Small Bag With a Book, a Toy, Condoms, and Baby Hygiene Products

Source: Imgur

A Cloth Diaper, a Towel, and Clothing

Source: Imgur

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Join The Conversation
nicolecramer nicolecramer 1 year

I would love it if the government gave me an entire stash of cloth diapers! #clothdiaperswoon

dannicahoskison dannicahoskison 2 years
Great idea! But what does this have to do w putting babies to sleep in the box? It failed to explain that and its the title of the article. And what does it have to do w welfare for that matter??
AmandaS24396 AmandaS24396 2 years
@Cheribaby. You need to pull your head out of A**. A lot of people are now on welfare as the economy keeps dropping. I myself am on welfare and have never in my live touched drugs! My ex fiance walked out! Before you go and make comments like this use your head, hope you never end up on welfare and have to deal with your own stereo typing! I think it is a great idea, I scraped up as much as I could to get everything my son needed (Oh Cheribaby I didn't do any illegal I worked hard).
Rebeccaclaire Rebeccaclaire 2 years
@cheribaby. "All welfare moms would sell it for crack"?! That's a bit of a generalisation wouldn't you say?
CoMMember13631175787238 CoMMember13631175787238 2 years
Yeap! Cardboard box full of goodies and 3 years of paid (at 70% of regular pay) maternity leave is all newborn needs. You can even skip the box and just go straight for paid maternity leave benefits so an American mother can once again breastfeed and raise her child in peace. My government, you want healthy taxpayers, right?! Then let me be a mother just as they let their women in many European countries and I promise, I won't let you down.
JessicaHansen45607 JessicaHansen45607 2 years
I think this is a great idea! Gets mom's into the doctor for prenatal care and you get some fun little gifts and a fancy little Amy! :-) my pediatrician even suggested using a cardboard box next to my bed to have quick access to my baby in the middle of the night for feedings. I bought a bassinet any way but for mother's who cannot afford one it's not a bad idea!
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