Ohr Torah Stone’s second annual “Women Moving Mountains” (“Eshet HaMidbar”) hike brought together more than 300 women from across Israel to show their support and to advocate on behalf of the plight faced by agunot, women trapped in Jewish marriages against their will.

The challenging 24 km desert hike took place over the course of 24 hours from March 7–8. The event included refreshment stations, overnight accommodation at the Arava Desert’s Antelope Ranch, an evening concert by Dafna Armoni, and discussion circles with agunot and Ohr Torah Stone’s Yad La’isha staff. The program raised important funds for Ohr Torah Stone’s Yad La’isha: The Monica Dennis Goldberg Legal Aid Center and Hotline to continue their important work.

Today, there are thousands of women in Israel and around the world who are trapped in marriages by men who refuse to provide them with the Jewish writ of divorce which can set them free, who long for the day when they will be released from their chains and be able to start a new life.

“The plight of agunot is a social issue that affects us all. As a society, we must march alongside them in every possible manner, literally and figuratively, and show our support for setting them free,” said Pnina Omer, director of Ohr Torah Stone’s Yad La’isha.

“I’m proud that our institution has taken the leadership role in advocating on behalf of agunot — even more so that we’ve been able to create a movement within Israel advocating on behalf of all chained women,” said Ohr Torah Stone President and Rosh Yeshiva Rabbi Dr. Kenneth Brander.

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