The COSV is a not for profit, community based organisation whose objectives are to act as a strong voice for the Orthodox Jewish Community in Victoria.
The COSV aims to assist Orthodox Synagogues to raise the level of awareness, interest and education of traditional Judaism and provide a range of services, infrastructure and facilities and act as a strong voice for Orthodox Judaism in the Victorian Jewish Community.
As a formally incorporated Company with a Constitution and Board of Management, it is elected by the member congregations listed in our membership. Regular meetings are held enabling congregational lay leadership to raise matters of mutual concern to the Orthodox Community.
The COSV traces its origins back nearly 70 years when the Federation of Orthodox Synagogues in NSW suggested formation of a similar body in Victoria. Simultaneously, a subcommittee convened by the President of the Melbourne Hebrew Congregation, John Mense, investigated possible formation of a Victorian body.
In 1965, Dr Saul Wiener together with the presidents of various Congregations decided that the establishment of such a body was an urgent imperative. Dr Weiner, who himself at times was President of South Caulfield and Caulfield Hebrew Congregations, served as the COSV foundation president for nearly two decades. He was succeeded by Raymond Joseph (Melbourne Hebrew Congregation) and Peter Cohen (St Kilda Hebrew Congregation).
An initial COSV focus was upon raising the standard required for Barmitzvah boys. In 1996 under the presidency of Romy Leibler, the nominal annual membership fee was replaced by a seat levy enabling the COSV to take responsibility for administering initiatives on behalf of the Orthodox Community including the Melbourne Eruv and Melbourne Beth Din.
The COSV has today broadened its scope of activities to be involved in a whole range of communal activities and services for the broader Victorian Jewish Community.