What are multicultural bulk loans?

The State Library has collections of books in 42 community languages, which can be borrowed by public libraries on behalf of clients.  This is a free service.  

How can your library borrow a bulk loan from the State Library

Public libraries can borrow a bulk loan of books from the State Library free of charge.  There are two ways your library can access the service:

  • libraries who borrow from the community language collections heavily can have a large loan from a language for 12 months (up to 300 items depending on which language)
  • requests for bulk loans can be placed using the multicultural bulk loan request form on an 'as needed' basis.  You can request ten, twenty or thirty items for a loan period of three or six months.  

What can your library borrow

Public libraries can borrow bulk loans from collections in the following community languages:

Arabic Bengali Bulgarian Burmese Chinese Croation Czech
Danish Dutch Finnish French German Greek Gujarati
Hebrew Hungarian Hindi Indonesian Italian Japanese Korean
Macedonian Maltese Nepalese Persian Polish Portuguese


Romanian Russian Serbian Sinhalese Slovak Spanish Swedish
Tagalog Tamil Thai Turkish Ukrainian Urdu Vietnamese

Each language collection has adult fiction and non-fiction books across a range of genres and subjects.  Children's books are also available, including board books, picture books, chapter books, non-fiction and bilingual books in selected languages.  

Audiobooks and large print books are available in some languages:

Audiobooks Large print
Chinese Chinese
Croatian Danish
Czech Dutch
Dutch French
Finnish German
French Italian
German Spanish

Check the  Community Language Directory for public library holdings in community languages.

English as a Second Language (ESL) Collection

Public libraries can also request a bulk loan from our ESL collection.  This collection is designed to support the independent learning of English, with a focus on beginner and intermediate level ESL resources in both book and audio format.  The collection has a large number of readers, bilingual dictionaries, industry specific resources and English for specific language speakers.   Requests for ESL material can be placed via the multicultural bulk loan request form.