A Renfrewshire MP has praised the national rollout of the Baby Box, launched yesterday, by the Scottish Government.
Mhairi Black, SNP MP for Paisley and Renfrewshire South, is encouraging new mothers to register for a box with their midwives.
The Baby Box is filled with essential items that mums and dads need to make sure babies have the best possible start in life.
The scheme has been designed by health professionals and is based on a similar project in Finland. The box aims to send a message that no child should be left behind especially in the first six months of child development. The box itself also doubles up as a safe sleep space, awarded British Safety standard accreditation as a crib for domestic use.
Mhairi Black said: “This is a really positive step by the Scottish Government, we are enabling every child the right start in life and I am thrilled that the scheme will be rolling out to expectant parents in Renfrewshire.
“The Baby Box sends out an incredibly strong message that we should all have a good start in life, no matter what your background is. Expectant parents can now register for the Box through their midwives and I would encourage them to do so”.
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon met some parents who would be some of the first to receive the boxes in Glasgow yesterday.
She said: “Scotland’s Baby Box is giving children the best possible start in life, and we are committed to doing all we can to make sure Scotland is the best place for a child to grow up.
The Governments commitment includes almost doubling entitlement to free early learning and childcare hours. She believes it will also benefit families by allowing parents to go back to work or further study.
She continued: “The importance of early years development simply cannot be overstated, which is why my government is putting so much emphasis on doing all we can to improve the life chances of youngsters across Scotland.
“In doing so, we want to help close the gap which sees too many young people from disadvantaged backgrounds lag behind others when it comes to health, educational achievement and employment.
“This is about laying the foundations for future generations, with the aim of helping to deliver a healthier, fairer and more successful country.”
All babies due on or after 15th August will be eligible for a Baby Box.
Main image: The new Baby Boxes being packed for delivery