What is a gemach?
Gemach is short for gemilut chasadim—“acts of kindness.” It’s a traditional Jewish organization that pools community resources and loans them out. By sharing what we have, we can reduce waste (bal tashchit), assist those in need (tzedakah), and foster warmth and intimacy (kehillat chesed).
There are several different kinds of gemach. At present, ours has two sections:
A simcha gemach. Throwing a kosher event, such as a wedding or bar/bat mitzvah, can be expensive. To help offset the cost, we offer plates, cutlery, tables, chairs, decorations, and more. We also offer a selection of bridal gowns and boys’ bar mitzvah suits. Please note: all our food items are strictly kosher and may only be used for events with approved kashrut supervision. Browse the simcha gemach.
A children’s gemach. Babies are expensive, too! We stock big ticket items such as strollers, changing tables, and cribs, as well as clothes, diapers, pacifiers, etc. Browse the kids’ gemach.
Who can use the gemach?
At this time, the gemach serves any member of the CBI community.
How do I use the gemach?
Borrowing and donating is by appointment only.
To borrow: Start by browsing the galleries above. Write down the name of the item(s) you’d like to borrow, then send us an e-mail. Someone will get back to you soon. If the item is available, we’ll arrange a time and place for you to come pick it up.
A deposit may be required for certain items. This will refunded upon return of the items in good condition.
To donate: Please only offer items in good condition. If you wouldn’t use it yourself or loan it to a good friend, then it’s not right for us. Remember: we’re not a dump.
Start by sending us an e-mail. Briefly describe the item(s) you’d like to donate. Attach a picture, if you can. If we need it and have room for it, we’ll get back to you and arrange a time and place to get it from you.
You can also offer to add an item to the catalogue and store at your own house. (Much appreciated, as our space is limited.)
Please do not bring items to the shul. There is no place to put them.
Can I get involved?
Yes, please! We need volunteers to collect items, maintain our online galleries and catalogue, and provide storage space. E-mail us if you’d like to help.
May our community go from strength to strength.
R. Yonatan Cohen
Frayda Gonshor Cohen
Linda Press Wulf