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Why Setup a Toy Library?

Toy libraries help to promote the principle that play is important. All children learn through play and appropriate materials are essential for their all round development. Toy libraries can promote child development and encourage parents and carers to become involved in their children's learning.

The following links can provide a more detailed look into setting up a toy library:
Key Considerations Aims of the Service Membership and Recording Systems Publicity Finance Insurance and Accident Forms Safety Standards Premises Storage and Display Contacts for Developing a Toy Library

1) Key Considerations
When setting up a toy library, certain procedures need to be in place. There are five main areas to focus upon: Aims of the Service Membership and Recording Systems Finance Insurance and Accident Forms

Safety Standards

2) Aims of the Service

In order to be clear about your aims you need to think about what you are trying to achieve. Make a list of all the aspects of the service. You might say: Our toy library service will: Offer advice on toys. Stimulate children's development. Offer a large selection of toys for all ages and abilities.

These are just some examples to get you thinking. Get your list printed, typed or written out neatly and display it where it can be easily seen. If you are publicising your toy library this list can form the basis of any advertising materials.

3) Membership and Recording Systems

Think about your system for recording. Names and addresses of members can be kept in an A4 ringbinder, a large book or you could use index cards kept in a cardboard box. You may be lucky enough to have access to a computer data base to share this sort of information. Every new member should show two forms of identification. This will ensure you know where your stock is going. If problems arise and toys are not returned you will have a reasonable chance of recovering them. Adults only, should be allowed to join the toy library. This is because there is a duty for members to take on responsibility of equipment borrowed. They need to ensure the safety of all children when in use. It is unfair to expect children to take on this responsibility without the support of parents or carers. All your toys will need to be catalogued and marked with your library name. This will enable you to keep on track as your library grows.

4) Publicity
It is a good idea to publicise your toy library. Good places to advertise are schools, nurseries and libraries, playgroups and parent/toddler groups. Other professionals such as teachers, Health Visitors, and social workers may be interested to know you exist. It may be useful to have an introductory letter of some kind, explaining who you are, when you are open and how you work as there may not always be the time at the sessions to explain things in detail. This information could also explain your aims and objectives.

5) Finance
To set up a toy library you should try to secure funds for approx 1000. This will enable you to buy a range of equipment to suit all age ranges and stages of development. You could consider fund raising, raffles, sales, grants or donations. Once you have your equipment you need to think about a 'Charging Policy'. You need to decide how much you will charge per week for toys borrowed. You need some sort of 'cash book' to record money paid and a lockable cash box for payments. Incoming and outgoing money should be recorded with the receipts for new items bought. You could also record in this book any toys that have to be removed because of damage. If using a book system some typical headings may be: Name of Member Date Item Borrowed Money Paid Item Returned Item to be Removed because of Damage Your finance section could be at the back of the book and should show a running total of money in your account. Date Total Money Collected This Session Total Money

Expenditure Items Bought New Total If opening a bank account the account should be opened in the name of the toy library with two workers as signatories. Page created 09/09/2009. Developed by Durham County

6) Insurance and Accident Forms

You must have public liability insurance in case of accidents. You may be already covered if you share the centre with other groups. You will still need separate insurance for loss, damage or theft of your toys.

Occasionally accidents with your toys will occur. It is a good idea to record all accidents or incidents as they happen. This will ensure damaged or dangerous toys are identified and removed from the library quickly. Your accident book should include: Date Where Who, Name and Address Actions Taken Outcome ie, Toy Removed Signature

7) Safety Standards
When setting up a toy library all workers need to take on responsibility for ensuring user safety. All equipment should conform to British and European safety standards. Organise a safety check list - this will highlight the lengths you go to, to ensure the safety of all users. Here are some suggestions to start with. When setting up a toy library all workers need to take on responsibility for ensuring user safety. All equipment should conform to British and European safety standards. Organise a safety check list - this will highlight the lengths you go to, to ensure the safety of all users. Here are some suggestions to start with. Check all toys on return. Ensure toys are clean. Ensure toys are intact - no missing pieces. Ensure damaged toys are removed. Advise parents on suitable toys for age of children. Renew chewable items regularly. Point out to members the manufacturers intended age range for use of equipment.

8) Premises
Ensure that your building or area used is safe and secure and that there is no other access to the equipment, possibly by other users of a community building. This could affect your insurance.

9) Storage and Display

Ensure shelves are sturdy and securely bolted to the wall if necessary. Shelving may have sharp corners, ensure these are fitted with corner covers. Place single activity toys on lower shelves where children can select themselves. Place toys and equipment with small pieces out of reach of young children.



Please see our list of useful contacts for other organisations relative to SureStart County Durham. Alternatively you may use the following information if you would like to contact the SureStart County Durham Team: Postal Address :SureStart County Durham Children & Young People's Services County Hall Durham DH1 5UJ Tel : 0191 3725443 Fax : 0191 3835653 Alternatively you may like to use our online feedback system.

Types of Bakeries
What follows is a partial list of the different types of bakeries. Small Retail Bakery - often a single store operation having not more than three personnel on board at any given time. The small retail bakery typically sells its baked goods on-site. This type of bakery has the potential to develop into a chain operation. In-store Bakery - these are the bakeries we find inside superstores or large grocery chains. Wholesale Plant - produces bread and other baked items in large volumes using industrial machines. They course their products through chain stores or fast food restaurants instead of marketing directly to the end-user. Cake Shop - this is a specialty store selling mostly cakes and other desserts. Their products vary from everyday cakes to cakes for big occasions like weddings etc.

In order to run a bakery effectively, you must first garner knowledge and experience in both baking and business. When you feel that your skills are sufficient enough, begin making inquires on where to put up your business. There are two ways you can open a store. You can start with a new bakery or you can buy the rights to an existing bakery. In both instances, you need to carefully assess the opportunity. Take into consideration your location s potential for profit. Is the store situated in a densely populated area? Do your research. Ideally, there should be at least 1,400 families near and around your store. You should also check if there are other bakeries around. As much as possible, choose an area where there is little or no competition. Once you have your location down pat, it is now time to focus your attention on the equipments you will need. Following is a partial list of the essentials that you must procure: industrial sized oven, mixer, weighting scales, chillers, food display counters, cash register etc. Try to get as many quotations from suppliers as you can. This will enable you to select who among them has the best deal. Next, you need to see to your staffing needs. Running a bakery is physically taxing. It calls for early mornings and long days. Make sure you hire only those you trust are hard working and are eager to learn.

It is your choice to start any business you like if you surely know how to run it effectively. Of course people would think that starting business is a hard task to do, but if you know exactly what to do, you don t have to be worried about it. Well, speaking of business, you may be interested in opening your own bakery store and below are some valuable steps you can consider. If you find it useful, the instructions will be very helpful for you to start up a bakery business. First of all, you will need to convince yourself about the business you are about to run. You should be well-prepared to launch the bakery enterprises by maintaining you stamina. Secondly, create a special formula about the type of business and marketing plan that may be convenient for you. Make sure that everything has the same direction and goal. Perhaps you can ask professional for help especially those who are proficient about SWOT analysis. Thirdly, if your budget is pretty tight, you always have another solution for your financial problem like pursue financing from a bank or personal sources. It is also important for you to make a list of materials or equipments your enterprise would need, supplies, dependable refrigeration systems, trays, cake boxes, building rent fee, and even water sinks, and wash stations. This way, you can fit the budget thoughtfully. Fourthly, you should keep in mind that opening new business will acquire you permits and licenses. Certainly, food services establishments is dealing with a number of rules, regulations, codes and inspections conducted by governmental authorities including health department, fire department, and any affiliated department should involve. Furthermore, another vital point should be managed is the legal and insurance bases. It is a good idea to seek coverage to replace all equipments and supplies if accidental events happen such as fire or flood. This coverage will also protect your business from other catastrophic occurrences, potential lawsuit, etc. you can look for lawyer or experienced commercial insurance broker to consult everything about legal and insurance bases. Afterward, other major points you need to seriously consider is regarding the purchase of top-of-theline equipment like commercial ovens, pressers, huge dough mixer, proof cabinet and boxes, industrial racking systems, etc. Moreover, when you are about to decorate your bakery business establishment, it will be a great idea to involve your imagination. Well, lastly, you will have to remember to throw grand opening event that suits your budget, don t be over-spending.

1) Identify your vision for the bakery by creating a life plan that incorporates your passion and how a bakery fits into your life goals. Defining what you expect from your bakery also helps when it's time to write the business plan. List positives and negatives involved in starting a bakery to see if the pros outweigh the cons.

2) Decide whether to start from scratch, purchase a bakery franchise or buy an existing bakery. Possible franchises include cafs such as Panera Bread, a donut shop such as Krispy Kreme or specialty pastries such as Cinnabon. Buying a bakery is the quickest way to become a bakery owner, but be cautious as to why the owner wants to sell.

3) Research the community where you plan to locate the bakery in terms of need for a bakery, whether there are enough customers, if there is a convenient location, what products the market wants and if you can provide superior customer service.

4) Write a business plan that include four major sections, a description of the bakery, the marketing plan, the management plan and the financial management plan. Use software such as Business Plan Pro to help you write the business plan.

5) Obtain financial support to start the bakery. Different sources of financial support include personal credit cards, savings, personal investments, a bank loan, venture capitalists, government grants, small business loans, loans or gifts from family or an investment by an individual who is successful in the field.

6) Conduct pre-opening activities such as obtaining any necessary licenses, permits and insurance. Open a bank account, contract suppliers, set up utilities, purchase equipment and hire and train employees. Organize these duties and hire individuals that have an expertise in these areas if needed. Keep track of the tasks and their progress in an organizer or spreadsheet.

7) Generate interest in the bakery before opening by putting up a sign as soon as possible and promoting the grand opening date. Get business cards early and hand out whenever possible to generate interest. Have a sample party as a pre-opening event for family and friends.