Irish “Baby Box” start-up partners with UNICEF in global infant vaccination drive

31st May 2016

Thebabybox.com to fund 30 vaccinations for infants in the poorest parts of the world, for every Baby Box sold

DUBLIN, MAY 31ST UNICEF is excited to announce a new partnership with Irish start-up gift company thebabybox.com, an initiative that will provide vaccinations for vulnerable new-born babies in the poorest parts of the world.

Every 20 seconds a child dies from a preventable disease. UNICEF and its partners are working to eradicate that risk by vaccinating children everywhere.

As part of its new partnership with thebabybox.com, a portion of Baby Box sales will go towards UNICEF’s measles, polio and tetanus vaccination programmes.

James Fox, founder of thebabybox.com says the company wants to give mothers and their children the best start in life: “At thebabybox.com we believe that all children should be given an equal start in life, regardless of where they are born. That is why we have partnered with UNICEF to distribute 30 vaccinations for every Baby Box sold.”

The baby box concept originated in Finland in the 1930s, where it was introduced to tackle the country’s high infant mortality rate. The original baby box was designed to be used as an infant’s first crib, with a mattress, basic clothing and essential supplies to promote safe sleeping. The programme is still going strong today, and Finland’s Infant Mortality rate is now the 5th lowest in the world.

Now reimagined as a stylish and practical gift for parents of new babies, thebabybox.com updates the concept with attractive packaging, a firm mattress, 100% cotton clothing and blankets, finest Egyptian muslins, toys and baby-friendly lotions and potions. Each box converts into a practical and durable crib, which conforms to BS EN 1130 – the top international standard for crib and cradle safety.

As part of its partnership with UNICEF, thebabybox.com will donate 30 vaccinations for every Baby Box sold (ten polio, ten measles, ten tetanus) to new-born babies in some of the poorest parts of the world. These vaccines will ensure that children are protected against three dangerous and potentially fatal diseases.

UNICEF, the world’s largest buyer of vaccines, provides immunisation for 40% of the world’s children. The organisation says almost one third of deaths among children under five are preventable by vaccine. When measles, tetanus and polio are left unchecked, they can prove fatal, or can leave survivors blind, deaf, or with brain damage.

Announcing the partnership, Peter Power, Executive Director of UNICEF Ireland said: “Every 20 seconds, a child somewhere dies from a preventable disease. UNICEF is working to eradicate polio and improve vaccination rates for tetanus and polio worldwide. As long as these diseases remain prevalent in many parts of the world, we will work tirelessly to provide every child with the protection of a vaccine.”

Cathy Kelly, best-selling author and UNICEF Ambassador has lent her support to the joint venture: “James Fox is one of an exciting new breed of entrepreneurs with a social conscience. His thebabybox.com initiative is inspirational and I wish him the very best of luck with it. Any sales will bring huge benefit to some of the infants in greatest need in our world and that is something really worth supporting”.

For more information, please go to www.thebabybox.com/charity and www.unicef.ie

ENDS

NOTES FOR EDITORS

Pictures of Thebabybox.com founder James Fox, with UNICEF Ireland Executive Director Peter Power and best-selling author and UNICEF Ambassador Cathy Kelly have been sent to your picture desk by photographer Naoise Culhane. Please contact us if you need anything.

Additionally, photographs of UNICEF’s work to vaccinate children everywhere against life-threatening diseases like measles, polio and tetanus can be made available. Please contact us.

About thebabybox.com

Founder James Fox left his job in Finance to look for a career that would enable him to spend more time with his new baby girl, Amelia. While he was tidying away Amelia’s toys into a box one evening he recalled a story he had read about the Finnish Baby Box. Not only does a Finnish Baby Box contain all of the essentials a baby needs, but it also acts as a crib and can then be repurposed as a storage box after the baby has outgrown it. James’ mind was made up – he founded The Baby Box the very next day – he did it with the stated intention to help ensure that all children be given an equal start in life, irrespective of where they are born.

About UNICEF

UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere.

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To learn about UNICEF and its work for children visit https://www.unicef.ie/

For further information, please contact:

Aedín Donnelly, Communications and Media Manager for UNICEF Ireland aedin@unicef.ie | Tel: +353 1 809 0281 | Mob: +353 85 1395272