Kate Middleton and Prince William have received a baby box as a gift from the Finnish government.
The baby box is given to all expectant mothers in Finland and may have played a role in helping the country achieve one of the world’s lowest infant mortality rates.
People from all over the world contacted the social security service Kela asking to buy one.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were not among them, but as they will shortly have a use for the clothes and other mother-and-baby items inside the box (there is even one item for dad) Kela decided to send one to the expectant parents.
“Kela wanted to congratulate the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge,” says spokeswoman Heidi Liesivesi.
“The maternity package gained such a positive response from all around the world. The timing was perfect that the royal couple are having a baby.”
Kensington Palace has confirmed that the parents-to-be received the box last week.
“We were delighted to receive the very kind gift of the maternity package from the Finnish government. It was a very thoughtful gesture and we’re very grateful for it,” says a Kensington Palace spokesman.
“I’m sure the Duke and Duchess will be very interested to see the contents.”
The palace does not accept gifts from commercial organizations, but is happy to receive presents from individuals and foreign governments.
Prince William and Kate Middleton are the second royal couple to receive a baby box from Finland. In February last year, Crown Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel of Sweden were given one to celebrate the birth of Princess Estelle.
As well as containing essentials, the baby box can also be used as a bed because it comes with a fitted mattress. Many Finnish babies have their first sleeps in these cardboard cots.
The baby box includes cloth diapers as the Finnish government disapproves of disposable nappies.
Maternity package is not a commercial product and therefore Kela cannot sell it. It is available solely as a benefit offered under the Finnish social security system. The items it contains are sourced through a competitive bidding process complying with EU law.
Baby box content:
- Box itself doubles as a crib
- Range of clothing including snowsuit, romper suits and leggings
- Hooded bath towel, nail scissors, hairbrush, toothbrush, diaper rash cream, wash cloth
- Cloth diaper set and muslin squares
- Picture book and teething toy
- Bra pads