European Trend of Putting Babies in Cardboard Boxes Hits Westchester

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The Baby Box movement is growing.

For the unfamiliar, Baby Boxes are cardboard cribs designed to reduce the risk of SIDS/SUIDs (sudden unexpected infant deaths) by serving as a safe sleeping environment. Created by Baby Box Co., they resemble Bankers Boxes but are actually modeled after the government-issued versions mothers in Finland receive, a country with a very low infant mortality rate. The boxes are designed for newborns through 6-month-olds (or babies weighing up to 15 pounds), and can also support bonding and breastfeeding by being extremely portable.

Mommy Poppins’ New Jersey readers recently learned Baby Boxes will be available for all of its state residents, and now patients of Open Door Family Medical Centers in Westchester and Putnam can receive them for free via a pilot program running through 2017. 

Open Door, which currently operates five locations in our area, provides health care services to patients with low incomes and those below the poverty line. According to an Open Door spokeswoman, it serves more than 51,000 people each year and intends to distribute 450 boxes to expecting mothers this year. (Should Open Door run out, the group said it will seek out more.)

Like the New Jersey boxes, they come packed with some sweet baby swag, including a mattress, crib sheet, sleep sack, onesies, socks, mittens, newborn cap, baby toy, burp cloth, tote bag, bib, washcloths, hygiene kit, baby book and clothes. The Open Door versions will also come with certificates for wellness classes and nutritional training, giving patients access to stress-coping techniques, medication monitoring, benefits and insurance access, financial-planning assistance and nutritional information. 

Open Door Family Medical Centers are located in Ossining, Mount Kisco, Sleepy Hollow, Port Chester and Brewster, and one is slated to open in Mamaroneck this spring.

Not an Open Door patient but still want a box? You can purchase one online.

Image credit: Baby Box Co.