Oh look, it’s a baby in a shoebox. Cute. You know that somewhere on Pinterest that picture has just been added to a collection of newborns in faux nests, with angel wings, and in amongst a thousand pastel-shaded murals. But let’s not pass up the moment to heap praise upon the story behind the intriguing headline – The Finnish baby box, which the state has given to expectant mothers for 75 years, has sparked copycat boxes across the globe.
When this story first appeared on the BBC news website and via the excellent radio programme From Our Own Correspondent, the article shot to the top of the most viewed/commented charts and stayed there for a few days. It was a story that was just part of everyday life in its native Finland, but outside of those borders, it seemed incredible – a simple and low-cost method of ensuring that newborn babies had the basics covered, that they got off to the best start, and that as a gesture of equality – it was available to all.
A while later, the story resurfaced, and seemed to engage a whole new audience once again. Cue more adorable pictures of babies in boxes, and more momentum to the things-are-always-better-in-the-nordic-countries narrative.
Well it’s back once more, and as far as good news stories on a Monday go, this one ticks all the boxes.
It seems that entrepreneurs from other countries have seen an opportunity to issue baby starter packs for both profitable and charitable reasons.
In some cases, it’s simply a way of packaging up a wonderful gift for expectant parents; in more altruistic circumstances, it’s an opportunity to demonstrate that nudge theory works and that life can be improved by providing a place that is safe to sleep or bath (see BBC article about the plastic alternative).
Some Mondays, you need a little good news.