The contents of the Baby Box have been refreshed on the fifth anniversary of the successful scheme which has delivered more than 220,000 boxes to expectant parents in the past five years.
The box has a dual purpose – to convey certain items for all babies born in Scotland and also to provide a safe place for a baby to sleep if required. The new look box has updated clothing designs and now includes a baby toothbrush to support early oral health.
Children’s Minister Clare Haughey said: “As every parent knows, the costs associated with having a baby are significant. Household budgets are under increasing pressure from the rising cost of living, so it is reassuring to know that all families in Scotland, regardless of their circumstances, have access to essential items needed for the first six months of their newborn’s life.
“Uptake for the Baby Box has grown to about 98% since it was introduced in 2017. As we head towards the fifth anniversary, I am proud that the Baby Box continues to support newborns and their families.”
Chief Dental Officer Tom Ferris said: “I am really pleased to see a toothbrush included in the Baby Box for the first time. Good oral habits are essential to achieving excellent mouth health, and this will allow us to support families in achieving this from the very beginning of life.”
Beverley Walsh, Head of Services at APS Group (Scotland), said: “The Baby Box initiative has created sustainable employment opportunities for local people, where possible supporting targeted groups. We work with training organisations, local schools and colleges, with the Baby Box supporting up to four modern apprenticeship positions and work experience placements each year.”
APS Group (Scotland) has the managing agent contract for Scotland’s Baby Box programme from April 2022 until 31 March 2027, with the possibility of a two-year extension.
The BSI has developed a new safety standard for baby sleeping boxes which was published on 25 November 2021. Before the Baby Box specific standard was developed, Scotland’s Baby Box conformed to the applicable elements of the accreditation for cribs and cots (BS EN 1130).
The new clothing designs were voted for in a poll conducted on the Parent Club website. Find out more about the Baby Box at Parent Club Scotland.