The Oakland Public Library is now lending toys designed for children up to six years old, library officials said Friday.
Toys are available at all library branches and at the main library at 125 14th St. Patrons can check out up to two toys for three weeks and renew them once, library officials said.
“Children learn through play, so we see books and toys going together,” supervising librarian for Children’s Services Nina Lindsay said in a statement. “They certainly do in the home, so why not in and out of the library?”
The toys include, among others, baby dolls, dump trucks, animal play sets, hats and scoops and buckets, according to the library.
Library employees clean the toys upon their return with Benfect Botanical Decon 30, a disinfectant that kills more than 99.99 percent of germs, according to a website for the product.
Patrons can see what toys are available by going to http://oaklandlibrary.org/toys, library officials said. Patrons with an online account can place holds on toys and pick them up at the main library or any branch, according to library officials.
The toys are durable, washable and work without all the parts. They come in a drawstring mesh bag with a list of contents and a photo, according to the library.
Berkeley’s public library does not have a toy-lending program, spokeswoman Deirdre Cerkanowicz said. The San Francisco Public Library’s youth services manager, Christy Estrovitz, said toys come out at a library playtime for kids. Parents relax and talk with other parents as their kids play with the toys, but it too does not have a toy-lending program.
The Oakland Public Library’s toy lending program is made possible by a grant from the Pacific Library Partnership, library officials said.
Keith Burbank, Bay City News