Being born in Finland in the late 1970s, I started my life in a Finnish Baby Box.
My parents had twins, my sister and brother before me and they did not have the space or the funds to buy another cot so my baby bed was a Finnish Baby Box courtesy of the government.
My mother recalls me sleeping in the box for the first six months until my parents managed to get me a cot.
My first memories of baby boxes are from my childhood when I was dressing my baby bear in the baby clothes that were part of the box from the year I was born in. The actual box was green on the outside and the clothing was very retro.
I recall a yellow and orange blanket with circular pattern across it very vividly. Growing up in Finland the baby box concept was part of everyday life. I recall my cousin sleeping in a box when I visited my Aunties house. You could also tell which babies were born in same year when looking at photos as the babies were wearing the same coloured and patterned clothing.
In the Late 1990s, I started my nursing studies as I was fascinated on how the health system worked and through my studies I got to know more about the concept behind the baby box.
Baby boxes were only given to vulnerable families on the condition that the mother would attend pre-natal clinics (called Neuvola) in the 1930s. This was extended to include all pregnant mothers in 1949 as it was used to make sure mothers were attending and getting educated about vaccination, breastfeeding, hygiene etc.