FAQs

General Queries

How do I wash my sling?

We understand that babies can be messy, but you shouldn’t usually need to wash your sling while you have it on hire. Babies love our smell!  Slings are cleaned on their return to the library.

If you feel that you need to wash your sling or carrier please Contact Us for further instructions, as per the Terms and Conditions of your hire. This is to protect both our slings and your washing machine!

 

 

 

What is a sling library?

A sling library exists to help people find the right sling or carrier to enable them to carry children from newborn up to toddlers and preschoolers. A sling library will have a wide variety of slings and carriers in their stock, and have a far bigger range than any high street shop. Here at Wirral Sling Library we have more than 80 slings and carriers in our inventory from 26 different brands!

Wirral Sling Library provides services in three different ways, please see the individual pages for more details.

Consultations – A one to one appointment with a trained Babywearing Consultant in your own home.

Workshops – Small groups can learn together led by a trained Babywearing Consultant on a set topic. You can join one of regular workshops or have one specially tailored to your group of friends, for example.

Wirral Sling Library -a Drop in service once a week, where you will be assisted by a Babywearing Consultant or Peer Supporter.

 

What type of slings do you have in the Library? Can I reserve a specific sling in advance? Can I see your stock list?

We have a wide variety of slings and carriers in the library, which can be used for newborns up to pre-schoolers. We will help you to find the sling or carrier which suits your family best. You can see a guide to different sling and carrier types here.

If you are registered on myTurn you can view our current stock list here . If there is a specific sling which is in stock you can ask for this to be put aside for you, please note that a sling will only be held for one drop in session, to ensure fair access. If the specific carrier or sling you have in mind is not available we are usually able to offer a suitable alternative.

If the sling is out on hire, please contact us and we can advise when it is due back. We are relying on the current hirer returning it on time, and they could return it at any time during the session, so we would suggest popping in towards the end.

What methods of payment do you accept / do you take card payments?

We are able to accept cards for hires via our provider Stripe, which is integrated with our electronic lending system myTurn. We can also accept cash and paypal.

For workshops, consultations and advice without hire we accept cash and Paypal.

Can you help me with my own sling?

Yes, we can! We can help you to use your own sling safely and comfortably. The only exception to this is if we do not feel the sling is safe for you or your child, in which case we would discuss this with you and provide further guidance.

We ask for a voluntary contributions towards our running costs if you attend the Sling Library, but this is entirely at your discretion. We can accept payment by cash or paypal.

Using your own sling or carrier is covered within a consultation or workshop.

Do you offer gift vouchers?

Yes, we are able to offer gift vouchers for Consultations, a Workshop or for a 4 week hire from our Library. These could make an ideal gift for expectant or new parents, or for a baby shower gift. Please Contact Us to arrange.

How much does it cost to hire a sling?

Our hire charges are as follows

4 Weeks £15

3 weeks £12

2 weeks £9

1 weeks £5

We ask you to place a credit or debit on our electronic hire system myTurn, which acts as a deposit. If this is not possible we may be able to accept a cash deposit, please ask for details.

Can I feed in a sling?

Most mums are able to breastfeed in most types of sling. We can help you to find the right combination for mother and baby at the Library, or in a one to one consultation. We will be able to advise on positioning and of course safety.

 

Slings are also suitable for those who bottle feed, again ensuring that this is done safely.

Are slings just for mums?

No, slings can be for anyone who spends time with your child who is happy to use one, and can do so safely. This could be dad, grandparents, uncles, or a childminder. They are a great way to encourage bonding and to provide a safe and familiar environment for the wee one. All are welcome to attend a Sling Library session, Workshop or a consultation tailored to your needs.

 

 

 

Can’t I just watch videos on youTube?

There are now thousands of videos on youTube showing how to use different types of slings and carriers. So why would you bother to come to a sling library session, or book a Workshop or Consultation?

  1. Our sling library sessions are staffed by trained and insured Peer Supporters and Consultants. While a large proportion of videos are made by those with babywearing qualifications many are made by enthusiastic amateurs. Their techniques may or may not be safe or comfortable.
  2. Most videos are made with a demo doll for a good reason… the most variable part of carrying a child is the child them self. In a face to face situation we can work both with a doll, and with your own child.
  3. Being a parent can be isolating. Coming to a Sling Library session or workshop will get you out of the house and meeting up with other families with similar interests. Our library session even has a cafe with cake!

Following a sling library session, workshop or consultation we are able to signpost you to trusted videos to act as a reminder for what you have been shown.

I can’t make it along to a Sling Library session, what are my options?

Please contact us and we can advise other ways in which we can help you, for example out of hours sling collection.

If you cannot attend a Sling Library session to return your sling, you can either extend the hire (subject to the item not being reserved by another user) or arrange to return it to Wirral Sling library’s owner, in Bebington. Please note that slings remain your responsibility until returned to a member of the Wirral Sling Library team, and cannot be returned to the St James Centre outside of Sling Library hours.

Do you sell slings?

No, we do not currently retail slings ourselves but Carrying Connects , run by one of our Consultants, sells the Lifft Slings stretchy wraps, with free collection or delivery available on the Wirral. They may also be available at selected Sling Library drop in sessions.

For other sings and carriers , we are able to point you in direction of reputable suppliers for all of the slings and carriers that we have in the Library. We may be able to offer a discount code for some stockists, and we also keep an eye on any special offers running. Some of these discounts can be up to 10% so please do check in with us before you buy!

Here at Wirral Sling Library, we aim to act with integrity and honesty in everything that we do. We do not allow any links to particular retailers or brands influence what sling or carrier we may to suggest to you. If we receive any benefit from referral to a particular retailer, we will let you know this. An example of this is retailers that offer us a contribution to sample products for the Library based on referrals.

 

Consultations

How do I wash my sling?

We understand that babies can be messy, but you shouldn’t usually need to wash your sling while you have it on hire. Babies love our smell!  Slings are cleaned on their return to the library.

If you feel that you need to wash your sling or carrier please Contact Us for further instructions, as per the Terms and Conditions of your hire. This is to protect both our slings and your washing machine!

 

 

 

Why should I consider choosing a Consultation?

A Babywearing Consultation with one of our trained and insured Consultants gives you up to 90 minutes of time dedicated to helping you to become comfortable and confident in using the sling or carrier of your choice, all in your own home.

 

For more details please contact us

 

What happens at a Consultation?

A consultation will involve on of our Babywearing Consultants visiting you in your own home or other venue as agreed in advance. You will be asked to provide some information in advance to allow us to tailor the session to our requirements.

During the session we will discuss safety, safety, positioning, the benefits of carrying and the types of slings available. We will also look at which sling might suit you the best. If you already have a sling we will help you to use it. You will then be given the opportunity to practice using your choice of sling with one of our demonstration dolls and/or your child so that you feel comfortable and confident in using the sling.

After the session we will provide any follow up information by email as agreed during the session. You are welcome to contact us for any further support.

 

Sling Library Drop-in

Do I need to make an appointment to come along to the Drop-in?

No, you can just come along. The session runs from 10am until 1pm on a Tuesday.

 

If time is limited for you, you may wish to conciser having a one-to-one Consultation

How does a visit to the Wirral Sling Library work?

You will be welcomed to the library and asked to sign in by one of our lovely volunteers.

You may be seen straight away or there may be a wait, we try to keep these to a minimum but we can get very busy! You are invited to take a seat, grab tea and cake from the cafe, chat to other library users, and older children can use the play area (unsupervised) or do some colouring in. If you wish to borrow from the library, you can also use this time to register on our on-line system myTurn, either on your own smart phone or our iPad.

You will be seen by either a Consultant or a Peer Supporter. Both are trained to help you with a variety types of slings, either from the Library or your own. If you are looking to carry twins together, want to back carry or if either you or your child have specific medical needs, you will be seen by one of our Consultants who has extra training and experience in these areas. You may be seen individually or in small groups, depending on your needs. Once slings have been demonstrated you will be able to practice with one of our demonstration dolls, and with your own child. We will make sure that you are both safe and comfortable.

If you wish to hire a sling, we would invite you to return to the welcome desk where one of the volunteers will process the hire. They can also remind you of how to contact us between session, and answer most of the nagging questions that may have popped in to your mind!

Can I extend the hire period on a sling I have hired?

It may be possible to extend the hire period on a sling you have hired. However, if another user has reserved your sling this may not be possible. Please contact us in advance so we can advise.

The hire fee is £5 per additional week. This can be paid using the card logged against your myTurn account, or by paypal.

You are currently unable to extend the hire yourself on myTurn, please contact us in advance so that this can be arranged.

Where is the Sling Library drop in session located?

Wirral Sling Library meets on a Tuesday from 10am – 1pm in the Cafe at the St James Centre, Laird Street, Birkenhead CH41 7AL. The nearest train station is Birkenhead North.

 

What are your opening times?

Wirral Sling Library is open on Tuesdays from 10am – 1pm. We take occasional breaks over school holidays, please check Facebook for more details during these times.

 

If these times are not convenient for us please contact us for our other services on offer.

Is there parking at the sling library drop-in location?

There is a small car park behind the St James Centre, and on street parking in the surrounding streets which is free of charge. Please park with consideration for local residents.