The Scottish Government has begun a three-month pilot handing out baby boxes to expectant mothers and fathers. Although this has started in Clackmannanshire and Orkney, it will be implemented in the rest of Scotland by Summer 2017.

The box is suitable for babies to sleep in and it is delivered full of essentials for a new baby, copying a Finnish project. It is also intended to encourage contact by expectant mothers with maternity and antenatal services.

The First Minister was at Clackmannanshire Community Healthcare Centre to meet parents and midwives and to distribute the first Boxes.

Ms Sturgeon said: “Scotland’s Baby Box is a strong signal of our determination that every child, regardless of their circumstances, should get the best start in life.

“The Box contains around 40 different essential items for new babies and for parents. It’s a simple idea with a proven record in tackling deprivation, improving health and supporting parents, and I’m proud and excited that the pilot is now underway.

“Being a parent is the most important but also the most difficult job there is so it’s important that parents get as much support as possible. The Box complements the existing services available to help babies and parents to thrive in the crucial early months.”

Mum to be Joan McKinven said: “I’m very impressed with the contents of the box. I think any support will be appreciated by new parents. There are a lot of helpful items so I think it will be well used.”

Gillian Morton, Head of Midwifery at NHS Forth Valley said: “We are delighted that Clackmannanshire has been selected as one of the pilot sites for the new baby boxes. Pregnant women from the local area are really looking forward to receiving their boxes and we are sure the wide range of items will be very useful during those important early weeks and months.”

The Box will also contain a poem specially written by Scotland’s Makar, Jackie Kay, called Welcome Wee One.

Jackie Kay 
Welcome Wee One

O ma darlin wee one
At last you are here in the wurld
And wi’ aa your wisdom
Your een bricht as the stars,
You’ve filled this hoose with licht,
Yer trusty wee haun, your globe o’ a heid,
My cherished yin, my hert’s ain!

O my darlin wee one
The hale wurld welcomes ye:
The mune glowes; the hearth wairms.
Let your life hae luck, health, charm,
Ye are my bonny blessed bairn,
My small miraculous gift.
I never kent luve like this.

The box contains: 

Fitted cot sheets
Satin edged cellular blanket
Mattress protector
Pramsuit with hood
All-in-one day suit
Romper and bodysuit set
Scratch mittens
Short-sleeved bodysuit
Long-sleeved bodysuit
Long-sleeved bodysuit with integral scratch mitten
Long-sleeved wraparound bodysuit
Footed leggings
Fleece jacket with hood
Jersey trousers
Baby wrap
Hooded bath towel
Real nappy and liners
Digital ear thermometer and replacement hygiene cover
Natural bath sponge
Bath and room baby thermometer and battery
Dribbler bib
Organic cotton muslin squares
Comforter / soother toy
PlayTalkRead play mat
PlayTalkRead travel changing mat
Baby book
Nursing pads