As you know my mood had been low last year and I did not consider last 2 years to be good. But towards end of last year after attending a coffee morning at Ashfield Play Forum to raise money for Children in Need an unexpected thing happened. I was told how they needed volunteers for their Toy Library. I was immediately interested and gave them my details. I spoke to Jane just over a week later to learn more about it, and I was still interested and so I signed up to volunteer two days a week.
I have been volunteering for them since 6th January. I was after doing something else so there was more positive then negative in my life, and I am enjoying it since day one. I am hoping the skills I use there will help to a new career in some way, which ever direction I take on that one. Either way, I would like to continue volunteering there.
Every day is different when I come to help there, I could be addressing envelopes one day to cataloguing toys another day. When cataloguing the toys I number the pieces the same as what is on the box so we know that piece is for that item.
My first day there was stock taking, checking the toys had correct pieces inside while I was doing that.
They also steam clean the toys before they go out again, something I haven't done yet myself.
As they know I have a creative side, I am also helping with the Scrapstore at times by making things so there is a display to show people who use the Scrapstore of what they can make. Here are just some of the things I have made.
I feel the skills I have are being put to good use here and my confidence is starting to grow again. They are a lovely bunch to work with.
About Ashfield Play Forum
Ashfield Play Forum has been going for 30 years now and aims to promote public appreciation of the value of play in improving the quality of life for children and young people in Ashfield. Play Forum membership is open to all groups and individuals working with children aged 0 to 16 in Ashfield.
Their Toy Library is for anyone caring for a child between 0 to 8 years who live in the district of Ashfield. There is no membership fee to join and the toys are just 20p each to hire per week. (A maximum of two toys can be loaned at any one time.)
See Ashfield Play Forum's website for more details.
I am also talking about it at Speak Up Librarian
I am also on Speak Up Librarian's blog after being asked about this work I do. You will find the Q and A post here titled Toy Librarian.