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500 pilot 'baby bundles' to be delivered to new parents this week

The bundles contain essentials for new parents and their baby such as clothes and a changing bag.

SEVERAL HUNDRED EXPECTANT parents will receive “baby bundles” this week as part of a pilot programme to provide households with some of the essentials needed for a newborn.

The gift bundle will include essential items for newborns such as a babygrow, vest and socks, as well as key items for the baby’s development, such as a teething ring, children’s books and a soft ball.

It will also include staples for new parents, such as a maternal breast pump, nipple cream, a changing bag and a sling.

The pilot scheme is the first of its kind in Ireland. It is hoped that the items in the bundle will encourage communication and bonding, as well as assisting with bathing and sleep.

Some 300 families from the Rotunda Hospital in Dublin and 150 families attending Waterford University Hospital were invited to take part in the pilot. The baby bundle will be delivered to the homes of participating parents at a time of their choosing.

Parents participating in the pilot initiative will subsequently be asked to share their views and experiences of the baby bundle and its contents, which will inform the development of proposals for wider national rollout.

Recipients will also be given an information pack about breastfeeding, safe sleep and post-natal depression. A resource to inform parents about accessing the National Childcare Scheme will also be provided.

In a press statement, Children’s Minister Roderic O’Gorman said: “I’m delighted to see the new baby bundles arrive at the doors of new parents.

“We have seen how well this scheme works in other jurisdictions, and through this pilot, we can get a real sense from parents of how well the scheme works.

“Our hope is that the bundles will be a welcome gift from the State for the new arrivals, full of the kind of practical items that parents need in those first few weeks and months.”

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