This felt to me like evidence that someone cared

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For 75 years, Finland’s expectant mothers have been given a box by the state. It’s like a starter kit of clothes, sheets and toys that can even be used as a bed. And some say it helped Finland buy canada goose jacket achieve one of the world’s lowest infant mortality rates.

Canada Goose Outlet It’s a tradition that dates back to the 1930s and canada goose clearance it’s designed to give all children in Finland, no matter cheap Canada Goose what background they’re from, an equal start in life. Canada Goose Outlet

buy canada goose jacket cheap With the mattress in the bottom, the box becomes a baby’s first bed. Many children, from all social backgrounds, have their first naps within the safety of the box’s four cardboard walls. buy canada goose jacket cheap

canada goose Mothers have a choice between uk canada goose taking the box, or a cash grant, currently set at 140 euros, buy canada goose jacket cheap but 95% opt for the box as it’s worth much more. canada goose

canada goose clearance The tradition dates back to 1938. To begin with, the scheme was only available to families on low incomes, but that changed in 1949. canada goose clearance

“Not only was it offered to all mothers to be but new canada goose store legislation meant in order to get the grant, or maternity box, they had to visit a doctor or municipal pre uk canada goose outlet natal clinic before their fourth month of pregnancy,” says Heidi Liesivesi, who works at Kela the Social Insurance Institution of Finland.

So the box provided mothers with what they needed to look after their baby, but it also helped steer Canada Goose Online pregnant women into cheap canada goose uk the arms of the doctors canada goose uk black friday and nurses of Finland’s nascent welfare state.

Canada Goose Jackets In the 1930s Finland was a poor country and infant mortality was high 65 out of 1,000 babies died. But the figures improved rapidly in the decades that followed. Canada Goose Jackets

Mika Gissler, a professor at the National Institute for Health and Welfare in Helsinki, gives several reasons for this the maternity box and pre natal care for all women in the 1940s, followed in the 60s by a national health insurance system and the central hospital network.

Contents of the box

Canada Goose Parka Socks and mittens, knitted hat and balaclava Canada Goose Parka

Bodysuits, romper suits and leggings in unisex colours and patterns

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Picture book and teething toy

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At 75 years Canada Goose Parka old, the box is now an established part of the Finnish canada goose clearance sale rite of passage towards motherhood, uniting generations of women.

My partner Milla and I were living in London when we had our first child, Jasper, so we weren’t eligible for a free box. But Milla’s parents didn’t want us to miss out, so they bought one and put it in the post.

cheap Canada Goose We couldn’t wait to get the lid off. There were all the clothes you would expect, with the addition of a snowsuit for Finland’s icy winters. And then the box itself. Canada Goose Coats On Sale I had never considered putting my baby to sleep in a cardboard box, but if it’s good enough for the majority of Finns, then why not? Jasper slept in it as you might expect like a baby. cheap Canada Goose

canada goose deals We now live in Helsinki Canada Goose online and canada goose coats have just had our second child, Annika. She did get a free box from the Finnish state. This felt to me like evidence that someone cared, someone wanted our baby to have a good start in life. And now when I visit friends with young children it’s nice to see we share some common canada goose uk shop things. It strengthens that feeling that we are all canadian goose jacket in this together. canada goose deals

canada goose coats on sale Reija Klemetti, a 49 year old from Helsinki, remembers going to the post office to collect a box for one of her six children. canada goose coats on sale

canadian goose jacket “It was lovely and exciting to get it and somehow the first promise to canada goose factory sale the baby,” canada goose doudoune she says. “My mum, friends and relatives were all eager to see what Canada Goose Outlet kind of things were inside and what colours they’d chosen for that year.” canadian goose jacket

buy canada goose jacket Her mother in law, aged 78, relied heavily on the box when she had the first of her four children in the 60s. At that point she had little idea Canada Goose sale what she would need, but it was all provided. buy canada goose jacket

More recently, Klemetti’s daughter Solja, aged 23, shared the sense of excitement that her mother had once experienced, when she took possession of the “first substantial thing” prior to the baby itself. She now has two young children.

“It’s easy to know what year babies were born in, because Canada Goose Jackets the clothing in the box changes a little every year. It’s nice to compare and think, ‘Ah that kid was born in the same year as mine’,” says Titta Vayrynen, a 35 year old mother with two young boys.

canada goose store For some families, the contents of the canada goose coats on sale box canada goose uk outlet would be unaffordable if they were not free of charge, though for Vayrynen, it was more a question of saving time than money canada goose black friday sale canada goose store.