Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern was taken aback at how well New Zealand received the news she was expecting a baby last year.

Ardern was sworn in as Prime Minister in late October 2017, later announcing her pregnancy in mid-January 2018 on social media.

Speaking to The Australian Women's Weekly, Ardern said she didn't expect people to be as positive as they were of her big news.

"I didn't expect people to be so welcoming, so positive about me being pregnant while being prime minister," she said.


"I was really nervous about that announcement – really nervous.

"So that part surprised me – and then the follow on, which was 'and now you've got her, we're here to help'."

Jacinda Ardern on the cover of The Australian Women's Weekly.
Jacinda Ardern on the cover of The Australian Women's Weekly.

Since Neve Te Aroha Ardern Gayford was born on June 21 at Auckland Hospital, New Zealand's first baby has made headlines around the world.

Last year Ardern took Neve and partner Clarke Gayford along with them to New York to attend the United Nations general assembly meeting.

Following their visit to the UN, Neve received a wealth of gifts from leaders around the world - but one gift had been a particular favourite.

While most presents have been "safe and traditional", the Prime Minister of St Lucia sent Neve a rather hilarious gift from the Caribbean.

Taking to Twitter, Neve's father Clarke Gayford posted an image of the quirky gift, thanking those who have showered his daughter with love.

"Neve's received a steady trickle of sweet gifts from a huge variety of world leaders, which I would mostly describe as safe and traditional.


"That was until this just turned up from the PM of St Lucia! Seems to work perfect with her Gissy outfit. Yes Mon!!" he wrote on Twitter.

Ardern also told The Australian Women's Weekly her baby was very popular with the people of New Zealand.

"I'll go places and people will say, 'Where's our baby?'" she said.

"Men too – when I went to Ratana, 'Where's our mokopuna? [grandchild]'.

"It's really lovely – this expectation that she's there and they can take care of her if she is.

"Even someone at the Business Advisory Council today said, 'Next time, bring the baby – we'll pass her around'."