Bring Finland’s baby starter box to America

Here’s how we can help ensure that all children in America get a strong and equal start in life, no matter the wealth of the family they’re born into: send their mothers a starter kit when they’re still expecting.

finland-baby-boxThat’s exactly what Finland decided as a society to do for all the country’s new moms: provide a starter kit that includes clothes, toys, and bed sheets — all in a cardboard box meant to be used as a bassinet. It’s a wildly popular and longstanding tradition in Finland, which has one of the lowest infant mortality rates in the world.

The Finnish maternity box idea is already spreading to other countries, including the United States. In the Twin Cities, Minnesota, for example, a new nonprofit is providing them to teen moms. Let’s take this great idea nationwide so that all babies and families in America can be included.

For more information, see “Twin Cities nonprofit gives teen moms boxes for newborns – just like in Finland,” Star Tribune (2015); “Why Finnish babies sleep in cardboard boxes,” BBC (2013). Also check out this video of Ella as she opens her maternity box (the 2015 edition) from the Finnish social security agency and this CBS News Los Angeles segment “Why Babies Should Sleep In Boxes, Idea Catching On In U.S.