Cotlands and TLASA host the 15th International Toy Library Conference

Cotlands and TLASA host the 15th International Toy Library Conference

Triennial global toy library conference to be held in Johannesburg; ministerial heads, CEOs and international early learning play experts set to speak.

Cotlands, in collaboration with the Toy Library1 Association of South Africa (TLASA) and IIE MSA is proud to be hosting the largest and most prestigious early learning play based event in South Africa; the 15th International Toy Library Conference. Hosted every three years and well supported by International Toy Library Association’s (ITLA) members, the event receives unrivalled support from international play experts that believe that play is essential for the development and wellbeing of not only children, but families and the communities at large.

The theme for this year’s Toy Library conference is “Beyond a toy library, a sustainable approach.”  and it will further communicate the diversity in toy libraries, the solutions that they provide to meet the critical need for early childhood development, their sustainability and most importantly: innovation of toy libraries for the future. The conference is taking place from Tuesday, 9 July and runs until Saturday, 13 July 2019 at IIE MSA in Ruimsig, Johannesburg. Leaders in the play-based sector will be part of the official five-day conference programme that will showcase global expertise and best practice in play.

Industry professionals responded with excitement to the call for abstracts, reviewed by the ITLA committee. Selected quality papers have been incorporated into the conference programme along with the senior level key note speakers. The stellar line-up of keynote speakers for the 2019 conference include:

  • Ruth Camelo Cabuya – Coporacion Jeugo Y Ninex Columbia
  • Professor Jaime Castro – National University of Columbia
  • Robyn Monroe-Miller, International Play Association (IPA)
  • Cynthia Morrison, A chance to play SA

The conference will also provide delegates with a growing list of prominent and knowledgeable speakers, among who are CEOs, play experts, early learning officials, policy makers and government representatives. They will share their insights from the field of play.

The global event gathers audiences from different countries to discuss early learning play-based resources, new play materials and development in play. In past years the conference was hosted in Netherlands, Korea and Brazil. The event attracts over 300 delegates and numerous play experts from around the world. There is so much to experience at the conference from keynote presentations, peer-to-peer sessions, workshops and seminars, videos and special meetings. Excursions are also being arranged for delegates to go and experience first-hand how toy libraries are implemented in South Africa and to get a deeper understanding of South African communities and culture.

Delegates can look forward to the most comprehensive and diverse program. The event will showcase unique, culturally rich African-inspired toys and games for early childhood development.

 For more detailed information, please visit https://www.cotlands.org/itlconference/

1 A toy library provides resources for play, trained staff and dedicated space, Play, toys and games are at the centre of activities. A toy library gives members the opportunity for shared play and/or the loan of toys.



Media contacts:

Natalie Frank




Lebogang Thobye




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