How does the toy library work?

Being a member of the Hobsons Bay Toy Library gives you and your family access to more than 1,400 high quality toys (worth more than $130,000!). Our toy library caters for children 3 months to 6 years old. Members can borrow between 3 and 9 toys depending on their membership level.


We have two toy library branches, one in Newport and one in Laverton. Memberships are branch specific, which means you borrow from and return toys to the branch where you are a member.

Where do I borrow my toys from?


How long can I borrow toys for?

Toys may be borrowed for two weeks. During public holidays, members will be advised of any Toy Library closure dates and extended borrowing periods. Family day care members can borrow toys for four weeks.


How much does it cost to join?

Not much! There are three options, depending on how many toys you want to borrow. Please visit our Membership page for fees and information on how to join. 


Are gift vouchers available?

Yes, membership gift vouchers are available. They’re a great idea for a gift that keeps on giving throughout the year. 

 


How does the roster duty work?

To keep the toy library ticking, each member is required to contribute 4 volunteer hours of roster duty per membership each year. Sign up for your roster dates online or on the noticeboard at the toy library.  Roster duty is a great way to meet local families and familiarise yourself with the range of toys available. 

On your roster duty day, your tasks will include:

  • checking returned toys
  • fixing and cleaning toys 
  • helping out at stocktake. 

Roster duty must be completed within the first 12 weeks of your membership term. Other ways of helping out on roster duty can also include:

  • Participating in our annual stocktake day (usually in January)
  • Becoming a Committee member
  • Cataloguing new toys
  • Helping out at working bees and fundraising events such as BBQs.

Our member newsletter and website will advertise these events. 

 


What if I don’t have time to do the roster duty?

Members' roster duty is very important to the toy library. It helps our toy library to run well and ensures our membership fees are affordable. Whilst we ask all members to complete their 4 hours of roster duty, we understand that family life is busy. If a family member or friend can’t do your roster duty, then members can pay a $50 roster levy instead of doing your duty. Payment can be made in your local branch during opening hours.

 


Do you have any special offers for new members?

Yes, we do!

Babies & new parents special

New parents receive an additional 6 months for free when they join before their baby is 6 months old. Simply pay your annual membership fee and we’ll add 6 months to the expiry. The toy library has a large selection of quality toys for your little one including mini gyms, rattles, cot and pram toys, musical and colourful toys. 

 

Free 1st Birthday party pack 

Join before your child’s 1st birthday and celebrate this special milestone with free use of our popular 1st Birthday party pack (usually $30 for members to hire). Check out the great toys included in this fun pack

 


What happens if you lose a toy?

Members are encouraged to check items and count pieces before borrowing. If a toy is returned with a piece/pieces missing you can reborrow the toy for a further two weeks to try and find the missing piece/pieces. If pieces cannot be found a fine of $5 per missing piece will be charged which is fully refundable when the piece/pieces are found and returned. We hope you find the missing piece so the toy can be returned to our shelves for others to borrow.


What happens if a toy is damaged?

We understand that toys are sometimes broken or damaged during the normal course of play. Please tell the Toy Library Coordinator if a toy is broken or is showing signs of wear and tear when you return the toy. If a toy is damaged beyond repair, the Committee will decide whether a fine will be charged to the member who damaged the borrowed toy – up to the value of replacement.

 


What are the fees for overdue toys?

A charge of $2 per toy per week applies for late toy returns, with a maximum charge of $10 in late fees per toy.


How can I renew my toys?

You can renew your toys online, by calling our Newport Coordinator on (03) 9391 0294, calling our Laverton Coordinator on (03) 9369 9118 or emailing hobsonsbaytoylibrary@gmail.com 

 


What hours are you open?

Newport
Thursday: 9am-1pm
Saturday: 9am-3pm

Laverton 
Thursday: 10am-12 noon
Saturday: 10am-12 noon

We are open throughout the school holidays. We are closed on Easter Saturday. Members will be advised of any other holiday closures.


Can I suspend my membership?

Toy Library Membership is an annual membership lasting for 12 months from the date of joining/renewing. In order to keep this structure the library does not offer Membership suspensions / on-holds to members who may be away on holiday etc. If a Member is intending to be absent for a considerable period of time within the year and would like to defer their Membership they may request in writing that the Toy Library Committee review their situation prior to their absence.


How can I join the Toy Library committee? 

The Hobsons Bay Toy Library is managed by a volunteer member committee, elected annually. The committee manage the Toy Library’s strategy and operations, financial management, fundraising and grants income, marketing and communications, events and more.

We always welcome new committee members and have a number of short and long-term projects and positions available. You don’t need any particular experience to be a valuable committee member, just a willingness to participate and take an interest in the future direction of the Toy Library.

Joining the committee is a great opportunity to:

  • meet and network with like-minded local parents
  • volunteer your skills to help a community organisation provide the best toy library experience possible for local families
  • gain experience on a local voluntary community board.

All committee meetings are open to members and you are most welcome to join us. Committee Meetings are held monthly on Tuesday evenings, commencing at 7.30pm. 

If you are interested in joining the committee, please email hobsonsbaytoylibrary@gmail.com.