by Carrie Bornstein, Executive Director

Last week a 12-year old girl decided to immerse at Mayyim Hayyim prior to becoming a Bat Mitzvah. As is the often the case, she led the way by bringing in her step-mother and grandparents, all of whom were skeptical about visiting a mikveh. Resolute in her plans, she calmly maintained her wishes and turned her family of skeptics into fans.

Now multiply this story by 1,439 others like it that happened in the past year thanks to our many supporters, who ensure that Mayyim Hayyim can thrive each year.

On the heels of Thanksgiving weekend, there is much that our community has to be grateful for. Here’s a taste:

This past year Mayyim Hayyim built up our marketing efforts, getting the word out so we will no longer be known as Boston’s “best kept secret.” In the past few weeks we’ve engaged more than 40 families with young children in new programming out in Waltham and Sharon. More than 90 people (over half of them young adults) joined us for programming to get ready for the High Holidays this fall. We released a new film featuring best practices in conversion and our Beyond the Huppah curriculum for engaged and newlywed couples. We also created a new version of our Seven Kavanot for Mikveh Preparation – a picture guide accessible to those for whom the written word is a stumbling block.

And in the year ahead we’ll engage even more families with young children through educational programming in Boston and Arlington, we’ll publish new immersion ceremonies as well as a special healing guide for those on a fertility journey. Finally, Mayyim Hayyim will launch a national network of like-minded mikva’ot so we can move towards the day when your friends and family in other cities around the country can access a Mayyim Hayyim-like experience no matter where they are.

Mayyim Hayyim represents the things I know we all want for our world: a spiritual home for celebration and healing, a space where being Jewish is a place of great pride, a place that values and cultivates women’s leadership, welcomes the stranger, educates our children to understand differences, and values the importance of mindfulness and self-care through marking transitions with ritual.

For all this, and for each one of you on the wider Mayyim Hayyim team who makes this work possible through financial support at all levels, I am truly grateful.

Jump on the #GivingTuesday bandwagon with us and make your gift to Mayyim Hayyim.

carrie-headshotCarrie Bornstein is Mayyim Hayyim’s Executive Director. She and her husband, Jamie, live in Sharon, MA with their three children, four chickens, and one dog.