Toy Library / Play Centers

How to setup a Toy / Game Library?

Anybody can set up a library, provided the basic conviction is there. Following is the game plan for a modest library, to suit the Indian conditions :

Area: 200/250 sq.ft. If a hall and ground are attached it would be most ideal since that would facilitate holding of competitions and similar other events.

Investment:

Toys Rs. 20,000

Games Rs. 20,000

Furniture Rs. 10,000

Stationery & other accessories Rs. 5,000

Total Rs. 55,000

PS : Electronic toys and computer games can be fitted into space if desired, provided the budget allocation goes up.
Personnel: Two or Three dedicated Volunteers plus one or two skilled persons to repair damaged toys and games.

Venues: Schools, Hospitals , ( Children’s Wards ), Bal Bhavans, Orphanages, women’s rehabilitation homes, Old people’s homes, institutes for the handicapped , book libraries, Social welfare organizations, housing colonies, industrial complexes, business houses youth groups, Charitable trusts, Civic bodies. Small entrepreneurs keen on worthwhile investment, housewives eager to spend their time usefully, social workers wanting to spread around goodwill, anyone who can spare a mobile van all these can set up a library or at least a play centre.

Membership: A modest library of the type envisaged above can cater to the needs of 200 children 100 in the 3-6 age group and another 100 in the 6-12 age group. Entrance fee Rs. 10 to Rs.20,Monthly fee Rs. 10 to Rs. 50. safety deposit ( to cover damage to toys and games) Rs. 100/-.

Mode of operation: Once a week , children can come and play, pick up a toy/ game of their choice and take it home for a week .

While breakage would entail paying the damages, those who handle with care can be given incentive awards.

Advantages: for one thing , Children won’t be pestering parents for new toys/ games on a regular basis. For another , 6-8 persons can be gainfully employed , though their earnings may not be big.

The beneficiaries can be disabled persons, retired persons, women in need, even children of older age group, so on.

How does the Foundation help ?

The Foundation helps those aspiring to set up a toy/ game library by guiding them from the moment of conception to the moment of delivery . To begin with, it advises on what to buy and where to buy and why to buy. It acts as a go between the manufacturer and buyer of toys / games, ensuring the best bargain value for money. Then it provides the necessary training to a core group of volunteers on how to run the library in a professional fashion. Wherever possible , it helps out in repairing and replacing damaged toys and raising funds from individual philanthropists, charitable trusts, social welfare organizations, etc, so that the library is on a sound footing.

Play Centers

While setting up a toy / game library entails a fairly substantial investment, play centres which let childred play, but not carry home a toy or game, are immentsely suitable in the case of civic schools which suffer from chronic funds crunch. So the FOUNDATION intends carrying out a campaign which would convince the Government to set up at least a play centre if not a library in every municipal school all over the country.

Difference between a Toy Library and Play Center:

Toy Game Library Play Centre
01 You can play with one toy/one game a week or two whenever the child desires You can play with several toys/ games, but during the play session only.
02 Thus one toy/ game can be played by one person for a full week. One toy / game can be played with , by many.
03 Less volunteers are required. More volunteers are required
04 Child has to find the company to play. He gets ready company of other children.
05 Breakage/ loss more. Breakage/ loss less.
06 Bigger budget. Smaller budget.
07 Lesser space. More space.
08 May not get trained supervision. Gets trained supervision.
09 Lesser income on investment. More income on investment as guests can be charged.
10 Party games cannot be played. In the hall party game also can be introduced.

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