Last Monday night, members of the Kew Gardens Hills community gathered at Dr. and Mrs. Sam and Avigayil Straus’ home to benefit PUAH, an invaluable chesed organization.
Thousands of babies have been born with PUAH’s help; the organization is the address for all questions relating to fertility health, genetics, and family purity. The evening began with a large selection of exquisite meats and a presentation by Mr. Jay Buchsbaum, VP of marketing at Royal Wines, who introduced a number of fine wines.
The guests enjoyed the video presentation about PUAH where they learned about the various services PUAH provides to the Jewish community. Rabbi Elan Segelman, PUAH’s rabbinic advisor in the United States, shared his expert knowledge in his talk, “A Day at PUAH.”
All were amazed and fascinated in learning some of the questions that PUAH receives on a regular basis.
Although Rabbi Segelman cautioned the audience that this presentation is simply a fraction of what PUAH actually does, it was certainly a challenging group of situations that PUAH helps navigate. He shared a question about a couple who found out they were both carriers of a severe genetic disease a short time after they got engaged. What options are available for this couple’s future? A similar question came from a couple who had given birth to a sick child, and only then realized they are both carriers of a genetic abnormality. Rabbi Segelman shared questions about couples struggling with infertility and many of the halachic challenges they face. As each is a case by case situation, no answers were given to the guests, but the couples were indeed given guidance by Rabbi Segelman and poskim. Rabbi Segelman explained that these questions are common and PUAH is the address for all questions related to fertility health. He concluded his speech with good news: His direct involvement with couples has enabled more than 50 babies to be born in the past year. Bringing a Jewish neshamah into this world is a tremendous z’chus, he said, and he encouraged everyone to partner with PUAH so we can all share in that z’chus.
After his uplifting words, Rabbi Segelman introduced Mrs. Lydia Isaac, who shared a personal story about infertility, how difficult the journey is not only for the couple but for the extended family, as well, the fabulous work that PUAH does, and the responsibility of the community to support such an organization.