Exhibit: Women Who Dared
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What She Said
  Hanna Weinberg
  Domestic Abuse Awareness Educator for the Jewish Community
  Baltimore WWD Event 2002
  Born in 1927
  Pioneered awareness of domestic abuse within the Jewish community and set up services to aid battered wives
Biography  up to top

Hanna Weinberg (nè Ruderman) was born in Germany in 1927 and grew up in Slobodka, then in Lithuania. In 1931, the Ruderman family moved to Cleveland, Ohio where her father, Rabbi Yaacov Yitzchok Ruderman, served as one of the teachers at the Yeshiva. After two years, the family relocated to Baltimore, Maryland where Rabbi Ruderman founded and headed a yeshiva named Ner Israel. From the age of six until the present day, Hanna Weinberg's life has been intimately intertwined with both Orthodoxy and Ner Israel Yeshiva.

During the early 1980s, Rebbetzin Weinberg became increasing concerned about the problem of domestic abuse in the Jewish community. Working behind the scenes on a local level, she established two safe houses for battered women. Coupled with an informal network of volunteers, these programs assisted with taking women to the hospital, picking children up from school, providing monetary aid to the abused woman, subsidizing legal support and providing career advice. On a national scale, Rebbetzin Weinberg raised the issue of domestic violence and abuse with other leading rabbis, sometimes in the face of disbelief, apathy and denial. In the same decade, she joined the Center for the Prevention of Sexual and Domestic Violence, founded by Rev. Marie Fortune, as an advisor on the Orthodox Jewish approach to domestic violence.

In addition to her advisory work on a national level, Rebbetzin Weinberg was also consulted on the formation of CHANA (Counseling Helpline and Aid Network for Abused Women) a project of The Associated: Jewish Community Federation of Baltimore. While remaining active as a community educator on the problems of domestic violence, Rebbetzin Weinberg gained certification in geriatrics at Villa Julie College and went on to serve as Director of Volunteer Services at the Jewish Convalescent and Nursing Home. Her interest in the more fragile members of the Jewish community was extended to caring for all those in need through the group she created called Bikur Holim (visiting the sick). This comprehensive organization now boasts over 90 volunteers, whose services include visiting the sick in the hospital, providing transportation to medical appointments and hospitals, offering a mother-toddler and geriatric group that enables cross generational interaction, and giving financial aid for operations and an infertility group.

Hanna Weinberg is a mother of six, a grandmother of 44 and a great-grandmother to 26 children and counting!

What She Said  up to top
[We grew up] I think totally intertwined with the Orthodox ...More 
Bikur Holim is visiting the sick and doing chesedim [deeds of loving kindness] ...More 
My father was known, even as a young boy, as an excellent head and was in a Yeshiva -- a rabbinical school ...More 
My mother was really a Rebbetzin in the true sense of the word, she was there as a partner. ...More 
Well, my role models were my mother [Feige Ruderman] and my grandmother [Devorah]. ...More 
[As a teenager] I was involved in the Bnos which was a religious girls organization ...More 
I guess [I balanced work and family] the best that I could. You can never do anything 100%. ...More 
There was no way they [my children] could not know [about my work in domestic abuse] ...More 
When they started [CHANA, the Counseling Helpline and Aid Network for Abused Women, Baltimore], at The Associated, they came to me ...More  Audio available
The work that I do now for Bikur Holim [visiting the sick] ...More 
Sixteen years ago I began to see that people were coming to Rabbi Weinberg [my husband] with these problems of domestic abuse ...More 
I believe it was seeing the pain, the pain that people were under ...More 
I hope that some people felt motivated; that there are things to be done instead of just wringing your hands ...More  Audio available
[My work in domestic abuse] was done so quietly. ...More 
I was Director of Volunteers [at the Jewish Convalescent Nursing Home] and it gave me a opportunity to be close to the geriatric population. ...More 
I was asked to join the National Taskforce on Domestic Abuse ...More 
I've spoken [on domestic abuse] in many cities. ...More 
Challenges? I would say that the difficult thing I did mostly in this area [of domestic abuse work] ...More 
I think when you see [former victims of domestic abuse], when their lives have had a little bit more stability ...More 
Multimedia  up to top
Photographs Photographs
Audio Clips Audio 
Answer - Path to Activism (Hanna Weinberg - CHANA)
Answer - Impact on World (Hanna Weinberg - motivation)
 up to top

How to Cite This Page
For a bibliography: Jewish Women's Archive. "JWA - Women Who Dared - Biography Hanna Weinberg." <http://jwa.org/exhibits/wwd/jsp/bio.jsp?personID=phweinberg>.

For a footnote: Jewish Women's Archive, "JWA - Women Who Dared - Biography Hanna Weinberg," <http://jwa.org/exhibits/wwd/jsp/bio.jsp?personID=phweinberg>.