by Rachel Eisen, Director of Annual Giving

It’s December, the time of year when many people make charitable contributions. As the Director of Annual Giving at Mayyim Hayyim, it’s a busy time of year for me. Sometimes it’s also easy to get lost in the weeds – then I remember all the reasons why I work here, and all the reasons our donors choose to support this special place.

People give because they believe in pluralism. People give because they believe in making Jewish rituals open and accessible. People give because they experienced life-changing moments here.

And sometimes – five times this year, in fact – people choose to sponsor a day at Mayyim Hayyim. The stories of why these donors made a gift to underwrite an entire day of immersions, education, and operation, are moving.

Board member Sherri Ades Falchuk sponsored the anniversary of her immersion to mark the end of her cancer treatments. Sherri, who is one of the authors of Mayyim Hayyim’s Blessings for the Journey: A Jewish Healing Guide for Women with Cancer, said the day “brought to mind very special memories of why I chose to immerse and the hope that symbolized the end of the cancer in my body.”

Marion Gribetz and Robert Rubin sponsored the day of their 35th wedding anniversary. Marion, who also volunteers as a Mikveh Guide, reflected that she wanted to, “in a still, small way, provide a sacred mikveh space and experience for others.” Sponsoring a day gave Marion and Robert “so many opportunities to share with so many people why we love and support Mayyim Hayyim. It really was a gift for us!”

Board member Sari Rapkin sponsored the day her nephew’s bride immersed. Sari feels blessed to have family close in town, and watched her nephew’s relationship bloom, and was “so honored that her now-niece chose to begin the next phase of her life right here at Mayyim Hayyim.”

Melissa Sydney and Adam Marshak sponsored a day in honor of the 10th wedding anniversary. They shared: “Our experience at Mayyim Hayyim was so moving that we wanted to commemorate our anniversary with a gift, and provide others with the opportunity to experience Mayyim Hayyim to celebrate the milestones in their lives.”

Mikveh Guide Andrea Werner Insoft and her husband Robert Insoft sponsored the day the Rashi School came to Mayyim Hayyim for an education program. Andrea and Robert’s children all went to the Rashi School and they wanted a special way to celebrate two organizations that have meant so much to their family.

You, too, can sponsor a day at Mayyim Hayyim: to celebrate a special occasion, to remember a loved one, or to mark any moment you wish. If you’re interested, give me a call: 617-244-1836, ext. 211. Or, if you’re feeling inspired, make a gift of any size online today. Every gift matters in keeping this sacred space open and accessible.

rachel-eisenRachel Eisen is Mayyim Hayyim’s Director of Annual Giving. Her favorite part of her job is hearing stories of why people donate. If you have a story to share, please call her or email her at