What is an ImmerseNYC Mikveh Guide?
ImmerseNYC Mikveh Guides support the entire immersion process at the mikveh. The Mikveh Guide's role is to:
- accompany the person immersing through the mikveh facility, from greeting the person outside the door, to waiting outside of the preparation room, to guiding the person in the mikveh pool, and then walking the person to the door
- listen deeply to the person who is immersing, to see and hear the joys and struggles that person is experiencing/has experienced, and to help that person feel connected to themselves, their community, their ancestors, and to that which is bigger and deeper than all of us
- help to create a ritual that sanctifies the transition the person is there to honor
Our Mikveh Guides are an extraordinary team of volunteers with a range of personal and professional backgrounds - educators, Jewish communal leaders, social workers, organizers, therapists, and more. Our guides participate in an extensive training with ImmerseNYC on textual sources for mikveh immersion, traditional and creative uses of mikveh, creating and holding sacred space, and the logistics of facilitating immersions. Mikveh Guides receive their own ongoing spiritual support from the ImmerseNYC staff and guide community, which enables the guides to thrive in this role of sacred service.
ImmerseNYC Mikveh Guides are Jewish people of all backgrounds, genders, and affiliations. No prior mikveh experience is required, and volunteer hours are flexible. Guides are selected based on an application and interview process.
How can I become an ImmerseNYC Mikveh Guide?
The next training for ImmerseNYC Mikveh Guides will take place in May and June 2017 in NYC.
In-person attendance at all training sessions is required (if you have questions about this, please email to let us know).
Application deadline: March 27th, 2017
Interviews will be conducted over the phone.
2017 Training Dates:
Sunday, May 7th, 10:00am-4:00pm
Tuesday, May 9th, 6:00pm-9:00pm
Tuesday, May 23rd, 6:00pm-9:00pm
Tuesday, June 13th, 6:00pm-8:00pm (this is our siyyum/graduation party for you!)
The 2017 training will include:
Introduction to Mikveh Guiding: Participants will discuss what brought them to this work, explore traditional and creative mikveh use. Trainers will provide an overview of ImmerseNYC in addition to a detailed description of the “how-to” for guiding immersions.
Listening, Ritual, and the Core of Our Work: This session will explore the connection between active listening and ritual creation. How do we meet people where they are in the mikveh space? How do we respond with the right tools from our liturgy and tradition?
Sensitivity Training: This training will be an exploration of how much of ourselves, as guides, we bring into the mikveh space. We will also explore the framework for continued mikveh guide support from ImmerseNYC.
Case Studies and Group Work: We will include case studies and teaching around specific situations that come up at the mikveh, including fertility struggles, weddings, medical issues & disability, healing, niddah (monthly immersion), and LGBTQ immersions. Seasoned mikveh guides will join us for this section.