Newborn babies in Finland sleep in cardboard boxes. For real. For 75 years running, the Finnish government provides all expectant mothers with a starter kit chockfull of adorable clothes, blankets, toiletries and cloth diapers. All of these goodies come in a cutesy cardboard box, complete with a mattress on the bottom, which naturally becomes baby's first bed. The idea is that all Finnish babies get the same start in life. Now there's a nice thought. Niceties aside, a recent BBC article explores how this mother-of-all shower gifts has also helped Finland combat infant mortality rates by encouraging women to get prenatal care. In order to receive the box, moms-to-be must see a doctor or prenatal clinic before their fourth month of pregnancy. Finland has one of the world's lowest infant mortality rates of 2.3 per 1,000 live births. Canada’s rate is more than double--5.7 per 1,000. Egad. So this box doesn't just provide essentials to families; it tells them that their government cares about raising healthy individuals, and that it's willing to do its part because society as a whole benefits if its citizens are healthy. Something worth exploring here in Canada, eh?!