It isn’t a secret that children like to play with toys. You
probably had a favorite toy when you were young. It also isn’t a secret that the
Saint Francis University’s Toy Lending Library, located in the DiSepio Institute, has been lending toys to local families
for years. Since 2009, the program has
allowed children the opportunity, for FREE,
to engage in play for growth and development. Who organizes the Library and
plans the events? Toy Library Ambassadors, that’s who! Toy Ambassador and Occupational
Therapy Sophomore, Allie Cummings, tells us about her experience in toy land.
What is the Toy Lending Library and how does it work?
The Play Works Toy Lending Library serves the community by
lending toys free of charge to
families. Like a traditional library but with toys; all
children from birth to age eight can check out toys for free, take
them home for up to a month, then bring them back and pick a new toy. All
the toys are donated to us, so we have plenty of toys to lend. We also have game nights where families can come and play all types of board games together.
What is your role at the Toy Lending Library and how did you get
As a freshman, I learned about the
Toy Library and got very excited about it. I started volunteering with a few
friends and that’s when I realized we weren’t just helping kids play with toys,
we were having a hand in the development of a child. I went to Professor and Founder
of the Toy Library, Dr. Lorie Rowles, and
asked her how I could do more to help. I am now one of the Toy Library Ambassadors
here on campus. I help manage and market the library.
Are there any skills that you learned at the Toy Library that will help
you as an Occupational Therapist?
I learned so many skills at the Toy
Library. Being an Ambassador has taught me management techniques and
organizational skills. I have also learned a lot about how children play and
why certain toys are best for different ages. That knowledge help me gauge a
child’s growth and development when I enter the workforce.
Lastly, when you were young, what was YOUR favorite toy to play with?
My favorite toys growing up were
Barbies. I had the big house that I would constantly redecorate. My mom would
take me to the store to get paint swatches to use as rugs. They would also go
on vacation to my room or outside onto the deck.
Toy Lending Library
Tuesdays and Thursdays 5:30 - 7:30pm
Wednesdays 5:30 - 7:30 pm
Feb. 14th and 28th
April 4th and 18th