PHASE 1 – COMPLETE
The Baby Boxes Have Arrived! All 140 of them. It was a year long fundraising effort in 2016 to raise $4200. We were actually able to get the boxes complete with mattress, cover, sheet, and baby university cards for $3475! The remaining funds will go towards completing Phase 2. We would like to thank the following people and organizations for helping us reach this important first step:
|William R Baker||Michele Vasquez||Maggie Ardiente||Jennifer D Shears|
|Karyn B Griffin||Lee Salisbury||Andrew Timothy Gray||Bruce Wall|
|Carrie Henson||Jan Wallace||Bob Lamb||Mike Crawford|
|Kenai Peninsula Foundation||Alaska Advanced Care Chiropractic||American Humanist Association||Alaska Berries|
|and those that wish to remain anonymous|
PHASE 2 – FILL THE BABY BOXES
We are currently taking donations to fill the boxes with as many needful things as possible. You may bring in donated items to our Build a Box Parties (see below) or go to our Amazon Baby Registry, pick items that fit within your budget and have them shipped to:
Last Frontier Freethinkers, 47125 Frances Helen Ave, Soldotna, AK 99669
Click on the Baby Registry image below to make a donation:
We are prioritizing the items as follows:
Top Priority Items – We would like to have these gender neutral items in all 140 boxes.
|2 Onesies||72||Sleepsack||3||Thermometer||36||Pair of Socks||36||Terry Cloth Bib||3||Washcloths||54|
|Burp Cloths||13||Mittens||19||Newborn Cap||25||Snowsuit||4|
Priority 2 Items – We would like to get as many of these gender neutral items as we can.
|Lovey(Comfort Object)||4||Romper||22||Teether||0||Parenting Book||0||Health Care Kit||1|
|Non-aspirin liquid pain reliever||0||Condoms||0||Bra Pads||282||Sanitary Napkins||0|
Priority 3 Items – These gender neutral items would also be nice to add to some boxes.
|Full size shampoo & body wash||0||Diapers (Sizes 1-3, please NO Newborn)||558||Lotion||0||Desitin Cream||1||Vitamin D Drops||0|
|Board Book||0||Baby Nail Clippers||0||Soft Bristled Baby Brush||0|
The boxes arrived in a flatten state for shipping. This means that all 140 boxes need to be assembled. We will be hosting build-a-box parties in the spring/summer of 2017 to construct the boxes and receive donated items. Check our calendar page for upcoming build-a-box dates!
PHASE 3 – DISTRIBUTION
We are hoping to provide Baby University classes starting in the fall 2017. Expectant mothers will be required to attend a Baby University Class, show proof of pre-natal care, and proof that they are on public assistance and they will be awarded a box. Rides will be provided for those who do not have their own transportation.
HISTORY OF OUR BABY BOX PROGRAM
We first got the idea after reading an article about Finland’s National Baby Box program and thought what a great idea. There was several things we loved about it…Introducing Last Frontier Freethinkers first charitable endeavor, the Baby Boxes Campaign.
- It drastically decreased the infant mortality rate in Finland.
- It promoted the kind of social responsibility that Humanist’s advocate for in this country.
- It would be a great way to get the whole community involved and learn that there are Humanists on the Kenai Peninsula and more importantly that Humanists care.
- What is more fun than filling a box with baby things? Probably getting a free box filled with baby things!
In Finland every new baby gets a free baby box or a stipend. 90% of the parents choose the box. Why? Oh my gosh, what a great rite of passage and what stood out the most was that the families said it really made them feel like their country cared for their family. What a brilliant concept. We would be hard pressed to find a family in America that felt that way about the federal government. We want our community to feel that way about Last Frontier Freethinkers.
We did some research and this is what we found…
- Getting the same boxes from Finland would not be cost effective but there was another company called The Baby Box Co that took the 75 year old concept from Finland and made it affordable for expectant parents around the world and at a wholesale price for non-profits wanting to spread the mission of “every mother counts and every baby should have a great start to life.”
- Approximately 700 babies are born on the Kenai Peninsula each year.
- The Kenai Peninsula’s infant death rate is 3.9 per 1,000 births which is lower than the national average of 5.87 but higher than Finland’s rate of 2.52.
- 16% of the infant deaths on the Kenai Peninsula are caused by Sudden Infant Death Syndrome; second only to birth defects.
- 36% of new mothers on the Kenai Peninsula are without support.
- 21% of new mothers on the Kenai Peninsula are on Public Assistance (approx. 140)
- 44.5 births out of 1,000 on the Kenai Peninsula are from women ages 15-19
- These at risk women are often transient with no crib therefore the baby ends up sleeping unsafely with mom, on the couch, or in a drawer.
Based on this information we decided to start with 140 boxes to cover all our at risk mom’s on the Kenai Peninsula.