Victorian Mandatory Vaccinations

As we are sure you are all aware, the Victorian Government has announced that all ‘authorised workers’ across Melbourne and regional Victoria must have their first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine by Friday 22 October (today) to continue working onsite. They will then need to be fully vaccinated by 26 November 2021.

The term ‘authorised worker’ refers to anyone required to work onsite which includes employees, contractors and volunteers. Our toy library falls within this category.

Impact on Bendigo Community Toy Library

This means all of our volunteers (including you) are considered ‘authorised workers’ when completing duties at our Toy Library. You are required to comply with this new government direction, unless you have an approved exemption.

If not, you will not be able to attend Bendigo Community Toy Library onsite as a duty volunteer (but you will still be able to come and borrow as normal).

We will need to sight your vaccination certificate or evidence of first dose (you may have been given a card when you received your vaccine) when you come in for your next volunteer shift. This will be documented on your membership file that we have seen your certificate and we will only use this information to fill future rosters.

How does this affect my volunteer duty requirements?

In these early days we have not yet cemented a plan regarding the implication of vaccination and duty volunteer requirements for the future.

If you are unable to be vaccinated for whatever reason, we completely respect your decision. Please understand this is not a decision the committee has made, rather something we must enforce in order to continue to operate. You are still able to come and borrow and return toys as normal, just not serve on the roster for the time being.

If you are not vaccinated, or unable to be, please contact our Roster coordinator Robyn on 0490 198 608 or so that she can remove you from the roster and look at other ways that you can help with some at home duty requirements, such as cataloguing, stocktaking, or cleaning.

There are many behind the scenes jobs that we need help with as well. In these difficult times if you can help us, please do so!

More information and support


To ensure all authorised workers can receive their vaccine in time, the Victorian Government has expanded their vaccine program, and Vaccination appointments are available out of work hours and weekends.

To book a vaccination through state-run centres, or to see links for how to book at your local GP or pharmacy – visit

If you believe that you are eligible for a medical exemption, a letter from a medical practitioner who has followed these medical guidelines will be required.


You can get an immunisation history statement or COVID-19 digital certificate online, or link it to the Services Victoria App, using the MyGov function. See the following link on How to get your Vaccination Proof


If you have queries or concerns about this new government requirement, please contact us to discuss. Please be aware that we are bound by law to enforce this vaccine mandate, and do not have the option to make a choice in the matter.

You can also learn more by reading the Premier’s statement, or by visiting the relevant information regarding workers who are required to be vaccinated.

Volunteering Victoria’s Statement on the mandate can be found here.


Should you need more support or further information at this time, please consider the following options:
• Talk to the Toy Library President, Esther Kerr on 0439 434 492.
• Have a confidential conversation with our National Peak Body Toy Library Manager through
• Alternatively, visit the DHHS website for daily updates or call their COVID-19 hotline on 1800 961 054. Should you need a translator, call 131 450 for 24 hours / 7 days support.

Volunteering at the Toy Library

So you’ve put your name down for your first duty roster, but you’re not sure what to expect?

Have a read below where we go through exactly what will happen when you help us out at a borrowing session.

1. You will receive a text message and an email reminding you of your shift and telling you where you need to go.

2. You will be rostered on with an experienced committee member. You won’t be thrown in the deep end, someone will be with you the whole time, guiding and instructing you.

3. You can bring your kids!

4. Your likely tasks include counting pieces, looking for accessories, sorting and organising.

5. You can nominate your preferred date when we open the roster, you can pick a date and time that suits you. If you don’t get around to logging on and rostering a shift, the Toy Library will allocate you a shift based on your preferred days (nominated by you when you signed up).

6. Missed out on a spot for the upcoming term? You will be one of the first people we call if a shift needs filling unexpectedly. Otherwise you will be top of the list for a spot in the subsequent term.

7. Can’t make it? It happens. Here’s what you do. Send another family member, if possible. Partners, grandparents, grown-up siblings are all welcome. If you can’t get a family member or friend to cover your shift, please let us know. It’s really important that we cover your shift.

8. Unable to commit to volunteering? You can pay a $50 annual surcharge to forego your duty requirement. To change your preferred dates, or to arrange to pay the roster surcharge you can Direct Message on Facebook or Instagram, or email us at

Lonely Hearts Club

Have you heard about our Lonely Hearts Toys? They’ve been sitting on our shelves getting a little dusty and feeling quite neglected. So we are thrusting them into the spotlight by including them in the Lonely Hearts Club!

C47 – Modular Creative Construction, Lonely Hearts Toy

Lonely Hearts Toys are a bonus borrow, which means they don’t count towards your loan limit. You’ll notice these toys come with a short feedback form which we ask you to fill out before returning the toy.

I1 – Nesting Farm Animals, Lonely Hearts Toy

Perhaps these toys are a little too ho-hum to be borrowed on their own, and they need to be combined with another toy in a pack. Or maybe they just need some sprucing up to stand out on the shelf. For some toys, their time may be up and it might be time to retire them from the Toy Library.  Whatever you think, we want to hear it!

I3 – Duplo Blocks in Bucket, Lonely Hearts Toy

You can find Lonely Hearts Toys on display at Spring Gully, or by looking for toys with a gold heart sticker at Long Gully.

Committee Recruitment Drive 2021

We are looking for new committee members in 2021!

Though we love to see new faces on committee at any time of year, September is a particularly great time to do it. Why? Because that is when we host our Annual General Meeting. Our AGMs are a great opportunity for members to come along and see how the Toy Library is faring, what our goals are for the next twelve months, and meet the existing committee.

At our AGMs we also declare all Committee Positions OPEN! We are always hoping for an injection of fresh talent to help us fill our roles (you can see our committee positions here). If you have existing skills in a particular area, or if you’re eager to learn some new skills in a specific role, we’d love to have you on board as a Positioned Committee Member.

We also welcome those who aren’t up for the time commitment of some of our Positioned Roles. Non-Positioned Committee Members (after their training) complete a minimum of one shift a month, and may choose to attend meetings if they like. Or not!

When you think about the benefits of being a committee member, it’s a pretty fantastic deal. Committee members get:

  • 50% discount on their Toy Library fees
  • FREE Party Pack hire
  • NO late fees… ever!
  • A key to access the toy library
  • The ability to volunteer and give back to the community with your kids in tow
  • Resume boosting experience
  • The opportunity to meet a great bunch of people

This year’s AGM will be held on Tuesday, 7th of September. If restrictions allow, it will be hosted face-to-face in Spring Gully. The meeting will also be accessible via Zoom. If we are unable to meet in person, the meeting will be online using Zoom.

For more information, please send us an email to or slide into our DMs on Facebook or Instagram.

BCTL Welcomes Members Back Into Toy Library – But It’s Not Quite Business As Normal

This weekend we are WELCOMING MEMBERS BACK to our Toy Library!

After too long with our doors firmly closed, we are so excited to move into the next phase of ‘COVID normal.’

We have been advised by Toy Libraries Australia of the strict guidelines we must adhere to in order to open our Toy Library to our members.

Here is what you need to know before arriving at our Saturday session at Spring Gully or Monday at Long Gully.


That’s right, no more Click and Collect, no more appointments!


In order to adhere to strict number restrictions, we will allow each member into the toy library for about five minutes to select their toys (don’t forget the bonus puzzle!). Once they are done, the next member can come in. If you do need to wait, we ask for your patience and understanding. At Spring Gully, returns will be completed outside, so no need to wait to go in.


This one stings! We are asking visitors to please leave children at home if possible. Babies contained in prams/ slings/ capsules are permitted. Older kids unable to be contained will need to be very closely supervised to ensure they aren’t touching the toys as this could lead to contamination (we know – very difficult! That’s why it’s easiest to leave them at home!). Please do not leave children in the car.


Hand sanitising prior to entry, mask wearing and toy washing are all requirements of borrowing from the Toy Library.


We would still love members to help us run shifts, however, as volunteers are unable to bring kids, we understand this may not be possible for a lot of families. If you can commit to a kid-free Saturday or Monday morning in the next few weeks, we’d be delighted to have you.


Borrowed from Spring Gully but can only get to Long Gully, or vice versa? No worries, drop off your toys wherever it is most convenient for you. Party Packs can only be borrowed and returned from Spring Gully.

Please note this information is correct as of 12 November 2020, however it is subject to change – please keep track of social media for recent updates.

Click and Collect Now Available to Members

Bendigo Community Toy Library is excited to launch a Click and Collect Service for all members today.

How to use Click and Collect

Head over to Mibase. If you’ve forgotten your login details, click ‘Forgot your password?’ to have them sent to you.

Once you’ve logged in, select ‘Appointments.’ Appointments are available in 15-minute increments and a maximum of two members can attend, helping us maintain social distancing.

Click ‘Show appointments’ for the time you’d like to book, then ‘Book’ to reserve your time slot.

Now you have your appointment, you can start selecting your toys.

If you would like a Toy Library Committee member to choose your toys for you, please write “Surprise Me!” in the ‘Edit Comment’ box next to your appointment. Your work here is done!

If you’d like to select your own toys, follow the instructions below.

From the top menu, select ‘Toys’ then ‘Search Toys.’ (Don’t select ‘Hire toys’, this is only for toy with a fee, our Party Packs.)

From here, filter to ‘Available’ and set ‘Location’ to ‘Spring Gully’.

From here we suggest you search by category. This may take a little trial and error, as some categories are only used for Long Gully toys. If you click these categories, very few toys will appear. For example, ‘Baby’ is a Long Gully category. ‘Nursery’ is the equivalent Spring Gully category.

By default the toys are in list view, but by clicking the green ‘picture’ button, you can change to picture view.

Click on the toy you want to borrow, then select the red button that says ‘Hold’. If you decide you don’t want it, select ‘Close.’ 

Keep browsing and holding the toys up to your limit – three for a small membership or six for a large membership. When you have all the toys you’d like, click ‘My Holds’.

You’ll notice that under ‘status’ your toy will say ‘Pending’. This means your toy has not been picked for you yet and you can still delete the toy and add a different one.

However, once a committee member picks your order, ‘Pending’ will change to ‘Ready’ and your order cannot be changed.

And that’s it! Your next job is to arrive at your session at the allotted time. You won’t be able to browse the shelves or enter the toy library at all during your appointment.

Below is a helpful video you can watch. It’s slightly different to the steps outlined above, as the system now requires you to create your appointment first, before holding your toys, but the processes are otherwise the same.


What precautions are in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19?

Members are asked to send only one adult to collect toys. If you are unwell, please do not attend. Toys must be cleaned before they are returned. Our volunteers will be wearing masks where practical. All visitors to our Toy Library are asked to sanitise their hands.

I want to hold some toys, but I can’t attend the next session. Can I book for a future session?

We want to ensure as many toys go out as is possible. For that reason, we are only allowing holds one session in advance.

The current session time doesn’t work for me. Any plans for different times?

If the demand is there, the Bendigo Community Toy Library will offer alternate session times in the future. We need your feedback! Send an email to or contact us on Facebook or Instagram with your preferred session time.

I already have the maximum amount of loans at home. Can I still hold toys?

Yes! Hold your toys up to your maximum amount. Just ensure you are returning your current toys at your appointment.

The toy I placed on hold has been replaced with a substitute – what happened?

Normally before launching this type of service, we would complete a stocktake. As we were unable to do this, there are some discrepancies between our online system and what is actually present on our shelves. Sometimes we may not be able to provide a toy that you have reserved. We will do our best to substitute and we ask for your understanding.

I need to change or cancel my appointment time. How do I do this?

If you need to change your appointment to a different time on the same day, go to ‘Appointments.’ The screen will show your current appointment time and other available times below. Delete your existing appointment and select another available time.

If you are unable to attend on the day, click ‘Appointments’ and then delete your booked appointment. Any holds not able to be picked up at the next available session will be deleted. If the delete option has disappeared, please contact us directly via email or via Facebook or Instagram.

I really like browsing the shelves for inspiration, and online just isn’t the same! Can I pop inside and look around during my appointment?

We’re afraid not. We are limiting access to the toy library to prevent contamination. You can always ask a volunteer to go inside and have a look for you – our volunteers are toy experts and will be able to unearth some treasure for you.

I haven’t completed a duty in ages! Do you still need helpers?

Our sessions are being entirely run by committee at this stage. We are asking members to help in other ways – posting photos of the toys you borrow on social media and tagging us, referring the Toy Library to your friends, and leaving us a review on Google or Facebook.

I usually visit Long Gully. Will you offer Click and Collect at Long Gully?

If there is sufficient demand, we will consider offering Click and Collect at Long Gully. Reach out to us if this is a service you would use – or via Facebook or Instagram. Another option we are considering is moving some Long Gully toys across to Spring Gully temporarily to boost our stock.

Long Gully Is Now Open

Welcome Long Gully

Our Long Gully Campus is now open and available for all members to loan from. For every member that means access to 5 open sessions over the week, 2 locations and over 1500 toys! Members can borrow from both campuses and do duty at either campus. Each toy has its own home though, so they must be returned to the campus you borrowed it from.

Continue reading