Nishmat's Women’s Health and HalachaIn memory of Chaya Mirel bat R' Avraham

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Yoatzot Halacha Milestones

  • 2020 In the works: Video conference a Yoetzet Halacha

    When a Yoetzet Halacha works in a community, she develops ongoing personal relationships with women. Partner with us to make face-to-face access to a Yoetzet possible for women everywhere.

  • 2018 1.5 Million Page Views!

    on Nishmat’s Yoatzot Halacha sites…

  • 2018 Yoatzot Halacha Fertility Counselors

    Together with Keren Gefen, Nishmat trains and certifies a cadre of the most experienced and scholarly Yoatzot Halacha as Fertility Counselors. They provide a religiously expert supportive female address to help couples navigate the challenging process of fertility treatment.

  • 2018 Sefer Nishmat HaBayit

    Nishmat publishes Sefer Nishmat HaBayit, a volume of responsa on the topics of pregnancy, birth and family planning. Written by members of the Women’s Halachic Research Institute, edited by Rabbi Yehuda and Rabbanit Chana Henkin, and sponsored in memory of  Marcos Katz, the book gives voice to the experience and scholarship of Yoatzot Halacha.

  • 2017 OU-JLIC Kallah Teacher Training Program

    Nishmat’s Miriam Glaubach Center partners with the Orthodox Union’s Jewish Learning Initiative on Campus to offer an online kallah teacher training program. Yoetzet Halacha Shoshana Samuels leads the 16-part webinar series for 15 OU-JLIC educators.

  • 2017 Distance learning

    The US Yoatzot Halacha fellowship opens its first class offering distance learning. Women from communities across the US and Canada now have the opporunity to become Yoatzot Halacha.

  • 2017 Historic statement issued by the OU

    “… the introduction of Yoatzot Halacha trained and certified by Nishmat, has resulted in a substantial increase in the number of hilchot nidda and related sheelot posed by women, who are asking far more sheelot than ever before, and receiving responses from a cadre of dedicated, knowledgeable and committed women.”

  • 2016 French Speaking Yoetzet

    Yoatzot Halacha Nathalie Loewenberg begins answering questions on Nishmat’s new French website and telephone hotline, and within the community. She gives classes and lectures in Israel – and in France, where she travels several times a year.

  • 2016 Yoatzot Halacha recognized at Knesset

    Knesset member Shuli Mualem presents a certificate of appreciation to Dr. Deena Zimmerman and Tirza Kelman, recognizing the directors of for their invaluable work advancing women’s health.

  • 2015 Second U.S. Yoatzot Graduation Nishmat’s Miriam Glaubach Center

    Rabbi Dr. Jacob J. Schacter of Yeshiva University, addresses the graduates: “Today is a Yuntif! Thanks to the dogged determination and ferocious tenacity of Rabbanit Chana Henkin, we have merited in our time to see the emergence of women as formidable Torah Scholars.”

  • 2014 Yoatzot Across America Month

    In March, 27 synagogues hosted Yoatzot Halacha as visiting scholars in “Yoatzot Across America Month.”

  • 2014 Mikveh Attendant Project

    Nishmat receives a government contract to train mikveh attendants throughout Israel. Yoetzet Halacha Rotem Glasser designs and leads the course. Topics include first aid, communications skills, women’s health, OCD, fear of water, sexuality, domestic violence, and spirituality.

  • 2013 First U.S. Yoatzot Graduation Nishmat’s Miriam Glaubach Center

    Rabbi Yona Reiss, Av Beit Din of the Chicago Rabbinical Council, says, “These remarkable women are poised to play a pivotal role in promoting taharat hamishpacha, facilitating happy and healthy marriages, and enabling the birth of more beautiful Jewish children in the world…”

  • 2012 Britain’s first Yoetzet

    Lauren Levin becomes the first Yoetzet Halacha in England. She is appointed community educator and head of the women’s division at Finchley Synagogue in London, widely known as Kinloss.

  • 2012 Women’s Halachic Research Institute

    Nishmat’s Women’s Halachic Research institute selects five outstanding Yoatzot Halacha as research fellows. Led by Michal Roness and Noa Lau, they engage in in-depth analysis of contemporary medical-halachic questions.

  • 2011 U.S. Yoatzot Halacha Fellows Program (YH-US)

    Nishmat’s Miriam Glaubach Center establishes a Yoatzot Halacha Fellows Program in the US. Faculty include Rabbi Kenneth Auman (Dean), Rabbi Gedalyah Berger (Senior Lecturer), and Yoetzet Halacha Atara Eis (Director). Over 50 mainstream Orthodox rabbis sign on to the honorary rabbinic committee in support of Yoatzot Halacha.

  • 2011 Spanish Course and Website

    An online Taharat Hamishpajá course in Spanish is dedicated in honor of Nancy Harris Friedberg by her children. Yoetzet Halacha Goldie Katz Samson answers questions in Spanish.

  • 2008 Hebrew Yoatzot Halacha Website

    Nishmat launches in Hebrew, dedicated in memory of Louise Khakshouri. Yoetzet Halacha Tirza Kelman directs the site and Rav Yaacov Warhaftig provides halachic supervision.

  • 2008 Marriage Companion

    Nishmat creates an online review course for women and couples, dedicated in memory of Blima Rivka Adel bat Daniel.

  • 2006 Miriam Glaubach Center

    Dr. Felix Glaubach establishes Nishmat’s Miriam Glaubach Center to honor his cherished wife, Dr. Miriam Glaubach. The Center’s mission is to enhance women’s observance of the laws of taharat hamishpacha and bring the expertise and compassion of Nishmat’s Yoatzot Halacha to Jewish communities across North America.

  • 2005 Kallah & Marriage Companions

    Nishmat creates an online curriculum for brides, dedicated by Nancy Harris Friedberg in memory of her grandmother, Fannie Harris. In 2008, an expanded online review course for women and couples is dedicated in memory of Blima Rivka Adel bat Daniel.

  • 2004 Jewish Women’s Health

    Nishmat launches a website for health professionals, directed by Yoetzet Halacha Dr. Deena Zimmerman and dedicated in memory of Mindel bat R’ Chaim.

  • 2004 Green Chair in Jewish Law

    Yoetzet Halacha Rabbanit Noa Lau, Keren Ariel Program Coordinator, is appointed Moshe and Charlotte Green Chair in Jewish Law. Rabbanit Lau is also the Associate Dean of Nishmat.

  • 2003 First U.S. Community Yoatzot

    Bracha Rutner is hired as the first Community Yoetzet by Riverdale Jewish Center. Shayna Goldberg follows suit in Teaneck and Englewood, and Atara Eis in Silver Spring, followed by Manhattan, and then Greater Philadelphia.

  • 2003 Golda Koschitzky Center founded

    Nishmat establishes the Golda Koschitzky Center to promote the work of Yoatzot Halacha, and dedicates the telephone hotline as the Golda Koschitzky Women’s Halachic Hotline.

  • 2002 English Yoatzot Halacha Website

    Nishmat launches, sponsored in memory of Chaya Mirel bat Avraham, to allow women world-wide to reach Yoatzot Halacha, In 2004, for health professionals is dedicated in memory of Mindel bat R’ Chaim.Yoetzet Halacha Dr. Deena Zimmerman directs the English websites, and Rav Yehuda Henkin provides halachic supervision.

  • 2000 Article in Techumin

    Yoatzot Halacha Dr. Deena Zimmerman and Tova Ganzel publish the first halachic article by women in the prestigious Israeli journal Techumin. The topic is “Veset HaGuf: A Halachic and Medical Perspective.”

  • 2000 The Hotline is Born

    Nishmat establishes a telephone hotline as an anonymous, discreet, woman-to-woman address for questions in taharat hamishpacha and women’s health. Every evening, Yoatzot Halacha answer questions under the supervision of Rabbis Yaacov Warhaftig and Yehuda Henkin.

  • 1998 Keren Ariel

    Jo Morrison dedicates the Yoatzot Halacha fellowship program as Keren Ariel, in memory of her father Emil (Ariel) Hess.

  • 1997-99 The First Class

    An initial class of eight women is selected based on extensive Torah scholarship, leadership ability, and deep religious commitment. For two years, they study halacha under the mentorship of outstanding scholars, with a detailed supplementary curriculum in women’s health. In 1999, they complete their examinations and are certified as the first Yoatzot Halacha.