The evening was charged with bittersweet emotions at the Chasdei Chashie L’Kallah (CCL) event on Monday evening, January 13. Graciously hosted by Rachel Solomon of Cedarhurst, with the expert guidance of party planner Shani Hirsch, the fundraiser drew a robust crowd and introduced the Five Towns community to this unique organization.
Esti Goldberg, who heads the tzedakah, opened the program by providing some historical background. It was founded more than a decade ago in the hopes of providing a zechus for a refuah sheleimah for her ailing mother, Rebbetzin Chashie Weiss. The charity’s mission is to provide kallahs with quality beds and, in some circumstances, dinette sets as well. Esti recounted how her mother’s focus was on helping others. She imbued her children with a simchas hachayim and bitachon in Hashem that she maintained despite the pain of her illness. Unfortunately, Rebbetzin Chashie was nifteres not long after, followed tragically by her husband. The family of 11 children was left orphaned of parents–but not of their emunah and determination to continue the legacy of chesed by focusing their energies on their hachnasas kallah goals.
Rebbetzin Aviva Feiner followed Mrs. Goldberg by articulating her thoughts on the dichotomous aspect of hachnasas kallah. Here is an instance where a woman is at her pinnacle of joy, yet the simcha is subdued by the bitter reality of financial strain. She continued that this is a part of how Klal Yisrael functions and recounted how Aharon Hakohen personified simcha, as exemplified by his genuine contentment when Moshe was selected as the leader of Klal Yisrael. She continued that the pinnacle of joy is simchas kallah and we can all share this excitement by helping with a kallah’s needs.
As the evening drew to a close, it was clear that all the women were touched by Esti’s commitment to helping kallahs as well as the family’s inspirational fortitude despite its tragic circumstances. The tzedakah uses every donation toward helping its kallahs, with more than 2,500 helped so far. Unlike many other charities, it is manned solely by committed volunteers, which eliminates traditional overhead expenses.
If you missed the Chinese Auction viewing, or would like to make a donation to Chasdei Chashie L’Kallah, you can visit www.helpakallah.org. The auction drawing is scheduled for January 21.
Special thanks to Dina Rogoff, Devorah Dreifus, Chaya Ungar, Maxine Somerstein, Esther Eisenberger, Miriam Leah Ungar, and all the other women who helped make the event a success. v