Every night she cleaned the mikvahs. No one noticed her crying

One of them caught her watching and froze like a deer in the headlights. Clearly, they were up to something.

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Hinda ley
Hinda ley
צילום: Vaad Harabanim

Hinda stands quietly in the back corner of the mikvah. The mop is gripped tightly in her hand. Back and forth, back and forth. Swish, swish, swish, swish. Sweat trickles down her wrinkled face as she slowly pauses from her labor. She steals a quick glance around the humid room to see if anyone is looking.

All clear.

She allows several tears to escape.

Night after night, Hinda Ley is up all hours of the night, breaking her back to bring in a few precious shekels for her family. Her husband Avraham works hard as a scribe over 8 hours a day, but it isn’t nearly enough to cover rent so the mother of seven stays home with her kids during the day, and works laboriously as cleaner through the night.

It’s never easy. But tonight is different.

Earlier that night, Hinda had caught her kids sneaking off the neighbors in the corner of her eye as she was praying. Something didn’t feel right so when she finished, she innocently asked her oldest engaged daughter, Raizel Sara where they had gone. Looking slightly guilty, Raizel Sara bowed her head. The two had a close relationship, and Raizel Sara decided not to lie to her mother.

“We were hungry, Mommy. The fridge is empty. We went to the neighbors for some food.”

Hinda’s heart felt like it was breaking.

Though she and her husband push themselves past their limits to bring in income, their efforts are simply never enough. The couple doesn’t own their simple Israeli apartment, so most of their earnings get sucked into rent. After that, there is barely enough money for anything else, even food.

Hinda looked at her daughter. From her sweet, mature face all the way down to her tattered clothing and shoes with several holes. Her wedding was just weeks away.

What were they going to do?

Right now, funds are urgently being collected by the Vaad HaRabbanim to help the Leys make a simple and respectable wedding for Raizel Sara. They still haven’t gotten even the most basic necessary items, and the wedding is just a few short weeks away. A heartbreaking video taken of Hinda provides insight into the stress that they are going through, and how desperate they are for help.

“In a few weeks, Raizel Sara is getting married and she is eagerly looking forward to her simcha. But she told me that she will feel embarrassed when she walks down the aisle in her ripped Shabbat clothing and shoes with holes. I am humbly turning to you, begging you-- Please, please help us marry off Raizel Sara respectably.”