If there is one common characteristic among all current and former Camp HASC counselors, it’s that they all derive more pleasure from giving to others than receiving.
Eitan Hochster, a former Camp HASC counselor, understands his fellow alumni’s penchant for chesed, and was looking for a way to give back to those who have given so much of themselves to others.
Last year, Hochster launched Match Made in HASC, a dating website dedicated to connecting not just Camp HASC alumni, but all those who view chesed and generosity as an important part of their daily lives and core identity.
“We opened to a niche market of those who are ba’alei chesed,” Hochster said. “It’s a way to give back to people who are doing so much for others.”
The website is intent on protecting user privacy, Hochster explained. A user creates a profile by answering a list of questions on the site that address factors such as age, religiosity level, daily habits and future goals. Through these answers, the site’s algorithm creates a pool of potential matches for that person.
A shadchan then further narrows down that pool by reading through an additional open-ended section that helps her get to know each person better. If she finds that two people might be a potential match, she can send specific men a woman’s profile, and they can decide whether or not they want to be set up. The woman will only know which men accepted her, and she can then reject or accept them through the shadchan. Once a match is made, the pair can decide how much they want the shadchan to be involved in their dating process.
The site functions similarly to YUConnects, but there are a couple of key differences. Hochster emphasized that his site is geared toward people connected to chesed specifically, and that his site is completely free to use.
“This is an amazing outlet, and it’s a free and private way for people to meet their spouse,” he said. While there is no charge to use the site, there is a suggested donation for those who do end up meeting their spouse through the site. “The donation would go to site upkeep and advertising,” he said. The shadchans and other team members work on a volunteer basis.
Signing up takes anywhere between seven and 20 minutes. Those interested should visit www.matchmadeinhasc.com.
By Elizabeth Zakaim