HUGS IN LARGE SIZES:

One day a woman came into the Gemach in a very big rush. I asked her if I could help. She said she needed a big shirt for her son who was waiting outside in the car. I asked her to bring her son inside and she said, "My son is retarded and loves to hug people." I said I would love a hug and that I treat all people as if every one of them are special. She hugged me and said, "Thank you." She went and brought her son inside – straight away I fell in love with her son and hugged him. We found several Extra Large shirts for him and now when she comes she brings him with her.

A SUNNY RAINY DAY:

One day it was raining outside and the outdoor clothing rack needed to be brought inside. I saw a man outside with two children who were without adequate shoes or coats. I approached the man and asked him if he could come in from the cold and rain. Then I asked the Gemach helpers to help me dress these children. The father was shocked that we were all totally embracing his children with attention and finding these children clothing and winter coats.

FROM TEARS TO SMILES:

Recently a woman entered the Gemach and immediately burst into tears. I approached her and instinctively hugged her. She responded by saying that she had not had a hug for a long time and apologized for her tears. I worked with this woman for a time to build her self esteem and to strengthen herself against her abusive husband. I helped her select clothing to complement her and soon she became stronger. "Lev U'Neshama" got her free legal assistance and she subsequently got divorced. She has 8 children to raise on her own.