The Aleph Institute Thanks Crown Heights

Hundreds of Crown Heights women and girls took the time to write letters of encouragement to mothers in pain. The Aleph Institute salutes them.

Getting a handwritten card in today’s electronic, fast-paced world is rare. Sending out 700 of them is an almost impossible feat. 

“Yiddishe mama” is almost synonymous with “guilt.” But for mothers whose children were incarcerated, the guilt is not a stereotype—it’s a daily reality. Mother’s Day often comes with an extra stab. Not only are their children away from them; they are away from everyone and anything that resembles normalcy.

That reality is painful.

Each mother, especially those dealing with the devastation of a child in prison, deserves validation for how much they invest. Before Mother’s Day this year, the Aleph Institute’s Family Services department wanted to send personalized cards to mothers and wives of prisoners—to salute their strength and encourage their faith.

And they wanted each card to be written by hand, because no matter how many mothers there are or how detached the harsh reality of prison can be, each deserves personal appreciation.

Sending out 700 handwritten cards is an almost impossible feat. Yet, within four days, they were all written, sealed, and on their way to hundreds of homes across America. How?

It took a community.

The Women’s Circle crossed 200 names off the list at their weekly gathering.

The Living Chassidus women’s group took tens more.

Friends and family stopped by the Aleph office and sent out another 300.

Beis Rivkah, Bnos Chomesh, and Aliya Loft girls who heard about the project wrote out close to a hundred.

Neighbors took the last few home.

Within days, every Aleph mother had a card with her name on it. For each of them, it wasn’t just a note—it was a powerful reminder that there are people who care enough to take the time.

“I have no words to describe how happy I was when I got the letter. I had tears in my eyes because it touched my heart to know that Aleph Institute again as always were thinking of me …. It’s literally giving me the strength to continue.”

“My son was so upset that he couldn’t get me a mother’s day card, but I got one from Aleph – and I felt that it was from him.”

“I added [the card] to my pile of special things to always keep.”

Thank you to all those who gave of themselves to make sure that someone out there knows that they are not alone or forgotten. Your Ahavas Yisroel is appreciated and your impact is profound. Thank you—our dear partners—for the kindness that allows us to bring hope, strength, and comfort to thousands in need.

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