• Valley Project

Chill out space in dark den

A ‘dark den’ which gives children a space to chill out in a busy world has been a popular new addition to the Dunedin City Toy Library’s toy stock.


Thanks to a Foodstuffs Community Grant the toy library has added a range of new toys which are good for children with different physical, social, emotional or developmental needs.



Children celebrate the arrival of new toys at the Dunedin City Toy Library in North East Valley, Dunedin
Children celebrate the arrival of new toys at the Dunedin City Toy Library including a dark den which gives children a chill out space in a busy world.


Toy library chairwoman Jennifer Lawn says during an annual stocktake they realized they didn’t have many options for children with different developmental needs, such as children with autistic spectrum disorders.


The new toys help stimulate cognitive, sensory and social-emotional development to support children to develop their abilities and reach their full potential.

While the toys are designed specifically for children with particular developmental needs the also have a wide appeal for all children, says Jennifer.


The new sensory toys include the dark den which is designed to provide a safe, calming place for children who are sensitive to environmental stimulation. Changing pebble lights and flashing light balls can also be used in the dark den.


A five senses activity set encourages exploration while an emotions game enables children to learn and practice human emotions.


A big thank you to Gardens New World who sponsored us for the grant, says Jennifer.

“We love the valley community and this is just another connection that brings us together. And it's fun to have new toys!”


The toy library is in St Martin’s Hall on Northumberland St and is open on Wednesday from 3.30–4pm and on Saturday from 10–11.30am.

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