Clear all basket items?
Connors Toy Libraries began in 1973 and was funded through a grant from the Lord Mayor Dennis Connors Fund - hence the name Connors Toy Libraries!
This funding allowed us along with the Health Visitors to open a Toy Library session in St. Marys Hospital for families with children with down syndrome, bringing families together to make friends, gain peer support and to borrow toys and resources to support children's learning and development within their own homes.
Families in the North of the City soon asked for this to be available for them in the North of the City and a second group opened.
Families, staff and professionals could see the benefits of having these support groups for families and it wasn't long before there was a request for Toy Library session to open across the City for all families to attend.
As the groups grew volunteers took over the running of the them, creating a safe and enjoyable place for families to meet, make new friends, gain peer support, borrow toys and resources and bring their children together to play.
The mobile toy library was developed when other service providers asked us to visit their settings to provide a play and toy loan session for families they are supporting. We continue to work with the Hostels, Refuge and teenage project as requested across the City.
We soon recognised that confident families would attend their local Toy Library session but those suffering with post natal depression, feeling isolated, lacking in confidence or new to parenting didn't attend. It was then that out outreach project was developed. Providing 1:1 support for families for as long as they need it.
Within the Toy Library sessions families that appeared confident would talk about concerns or issues including behavioral concerns, weaning, toileting, sleeping, attachment etc.. we are able to provide support, sign posting or referral onto the appropriate service where needed. It from here our Early Intervention project was introduced. We also support parents with domestic abuse, post natal depression, substance misuse, financial concerns and housing - signposting them to and gaining the support they need at such a difficult time.
Our child carers Toy Store is available for all professional working with and caring for others people children, including foster carers, nurseries, childminders, speech and language, playshemes, Portage etc.. This ensures all provisions have access to good quality, educational and fun toys and resources for all children to enjoy.
Families with children with additional needs can access the Child carers toy store to borrow specialist toys and resources to support their child learning and development within their own homes.