Wandsworth to launch unique Baby Box scheme for young parents

Published: Wednesday, May 29, 2024

  • ‘Baby Boxes’ containing essentials to be given to young and care-experienced parents
  • Wandsworth scheme is the first of its kind in London
  • Part of the council’s pledge to support families through tough times

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The borough’s babies will get a better start in life thanks to a unique package of support from Wandsworth Council.

The first scheme of its kind in London will see all care-experienced young parents, and parents under 21 in need of support, get a free ‘baby box’ just before they have their first child.

The box contains books and toys to help young parents positively bond with their baby through play, reading, singing and counting and provides them with the essentials needed in the crucial first few years of a baby’s life. The box itself has a padded mattress and can be used as a cot if necessary.

They will also receive on-going support from experiences, child-focused staff from the council’s new ‘one-stop shop’ the Family Hub, working in partnership with health and social care experts.

Frarnie Brum, a young parent herself who has used the contents of the box with her baby  said “I’m glad they’ve brought this in now when some people are struggling. You wouldn’t have an idea what to do but his box is complete with everything you need.”

The Baby Box scheme is being launched soon with support from the Family Nurse Partnership and St George’s and Chelsea and Westminster NHS Trusts.

Kate Stock, Cabinet Member for Children, said: “We are determined to make Wandsworth healthier and fairer. We’re doing that by getting out into communities and supporting people to access the services they need.

“We’re really proud of our new Baby Box scheme and of our partnership with Little Village on Bundles in Partnership. They will target pioneering support to the people who need it most and will help give our most vulnerable children the best start in life.”


Notes to editors:

The first Wandsworth Family Hub was launched in September at the Yvonne Carr centre, and provides a wide range of family support under one roof, including midwifery, health visiting and children’s centre services, as well as more streamlined access to other new services such as housing support and career advice.

More Family Hubs are being developed and a team of Family Hub Connectors have been employed to work in the heart of communities. They support young and vulnerable parents during the first year and link them up with a range of support. 

Wandsworth offers a range of services for families with pre-school children, including the Family Hub and children’s centres. There is also a team of Parent Champions – volunteers who talk to other parents in everyday settings and help them find services and support. Find out more on the Family Information Service.

You can find out about grants, allowances, free childcare and other financial support for families on the Wandsworth Cost of Living Hub.