Mt Barker Toy Library refurbishes almost half their toy collection after $4,500 grant

Campbell WilliamsonAlbany Advertiser
Children and families at the toy library’s stay and play day.
Camera IconChildren and families at the toy library’s stay and play day. Credit: Supplied Mt Barker Toy Library

Refurbishing almost half their toy collection after receiving a $4500 grant, the Mt Barker Toy Library is gaining in strength and has big plans for the future.

Run like a conventional library but with toys instead of books, the facility helps its members save money, reduce waste and support their children’s development.

Many of the library’s toys had not been replaced since before 2010, compromising the experience on offer but with the arrival of new equipment an improved level of service is now possible.

The extra equipment is also expected to boost membership (presently about 80 members) by more than 30 per cent within a year, strengthening the library and the local community.

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Secretary at the Mt Barker Toy Library, Becky Noordink, said that the $4500 grant from the Bendigo Community Bank Mt Barker had helped ensure families access to quality toys.

“Some of these toys are very expensive and not affordable for the average family to purchase,” she said.

“Our service is critical in ensuring no family is unable to access quality toys that encourage the necessary skills for a child to grow and develop, through play.”

On August 11, the toy library team celebrated their new equipment at an event attended by members, children and Bendigo Community Bank representatives.

“The (day) was an incredible opportunity for our members to come together and let the kids explore the new toys and costumes thanks to Bendigo Bank,” Ms Noordink said.

With the Mt Barker Community Resource Centre about 25sqm in size, the new toys are part of the Renew and Grow Project that aims to see the toy library growing to occupy bigger premises by 2024.

“Our vision is larger than just a bigger physical building,” Ms Noordink said.

“For us, this is the opportunity to have a facility where we can create a community hub.

“Many other toy libraries around the State and country follow this format and contribute so much to families but we need the members and the toys to continue to renew and grow the toy library first.

“New members also mean the potential for interest in joining our committee and helping us achieve our strategic plan for the toy library, whilst also bringing new ideas and contributions.”

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