On Sunday, November 18, his 38th birthday, Rabbi Yair Hindin left the hospital after donating a kidney through Renewal. “My greatest birthday gift ever was hearing the daughter of my recipient tell me that I had given her mother a new life.”
The Hindins recently moved to Teaneck after serving as the resident rabbi and rebbetzin at the Albert Einstein Medical School. Hindin’s journey to kidney transplantation began one year ago while attending a melave malka at Congregation Rinat Yisrael, where the parents of his wife, Talia nee Wiesen, belong. The evening served as a seudat hodaya by Rabbi Yosef Adler to the community for their unwavering support and encouragement throughout his kidney transplant, which was donated by his son Zvi. On the tables were copies of Renewal’s recent brochure, which highlighted the stories of several Teaneck donors, including Rabbi Larry Rothwachs, rabbi of Congregation Beth Aaron, and David Barach, a member of Congregation Beth Aaron. Hindin, who is one of the presenters of daf hashavua at Beth Aaron, was deeply touched by the stories of these two individuals whom he knows and respects highly.
After much thought and with the consent of his wife, who at the time was expecting their fifth child, and the support of his parents and in-laws, Hindin started the process of kidney donation. After a series of medical evaluations he proved qualified to donate in the spring of 2018. However, twice the recipients assigned to him were unable to undergo the procedure. Finally, this November, a suitable recipient was identified and the procedure took place, assisted all the way by agents of Renewal.
In assessing his recent donation, Rabbi Hindin believes that he was granted many “gifts” through the experience. “The knowledge that I saved my recipient from undergoing more years of painful dialysis and provided her with a renewed quality of life is the greatest gift of all. But on a more personal level, I have come to appreciate the marvel of a fully functioning body and the impact of the bracha asher yatzar that we recite numerous times daily. Finally, I have come to understand the commentary of the Tur on the concept of tzedakah. A wealthy person has been chosen by Hashem to be the guardian of his wealth. His job is to help God distribute this wealth to those in need. What a blessing it is to me to be the baal ha’pikadon, the owner of the deposit, in this case a kidney, and be able to donate it to a person in need.”
Founded in 2006, Renewal saves lives by helping facilitate kidney transplants for those suffering with chronic kidney disease. Renewal helps patients and their families navigate the complex process of a kidney transplant, from finding a doctor to arranging the transplant and beyond. On the waiting list are people from all walks of life, and of all ages, ranging from young children to 80-year-olds. Patients come to Renewal from countries throughout the world, including the U.S., Canada and Israel, as well as England and Brazil.
Renewals guides patients to doctors who are at the top of the field of renal transplants and identifies the best hospitals for the procedures. Renewal offers a comprehensive guide to the entire procedure of donation and receipt. The guide has been disseminated throughout the world with requests to translate it into Yiddish and Hebrew. Renewal accompanies the donor and recipient throughout the entire transplant, from the first day of testing to the morning of the transplant when the donor is driven to the hospital. Volunteers from the organization stay by the side of the donor and family throughout the procedure and even overnight. Even after the donor is released from the hospital, Renewal is on the scene to help with the convalescence. All of these services are provided free of charge, including potential loss of wages, transportation and recuperation.
By Pearl Markovitz
Rabbi Hindin urged those who are inspired by the work of Renewal to consider coming aboard as one of their special donors, or learn how else to help. For further information, visit www.renewal.org.