Ariel and Benjamin

Family Stories

Ariel and Benjamin


Ben is currently a first-year Emergency Medicine resident in Chicago’s South Side and enjoys giving back to his community. Ari has recently started a women’s health telemedicine company and both are excited to move closer to our dream of starting our family!

As a veteran, Ben has been active in organizations like Veterans Anti-Violence as a board member and as a funding allocations committee member for United Way. He also taught English as a Second Language (ESL) to college students in Bamako, Mali and participated in Big Brothers Big Sisters when he lived in Hawaii. As for Ari, he’s been serving to expand our South Side neighborhood’s business opportunities as a member of the Woodlawn Business Development Committee, working with other community members and have been active in the ASPCA.

Both of us have desired to be parents since we were kids ourselves. We come from mid-sized families, and we envision a family with at least one or two children. Our first date even involved a discussion of how many kids we wanted, and we want to build a family that blends both of our religious, cultural and ethnic traditions. We both believe that our relationship is as strong and successful as it is because it rests upon a shared goal: founding a family that includes biological and eventually adopted children. We believe that improving the world (the Jewish value of tikkum olam) starts firmly with raising the next generation of thoughtful, involved, and respectful kids who are excited to make the world a better place. Part of that goal stems from our upbringing: our parents instilled those values in us, and we are eager to pass them on.

On the way, we encountered barriers to our goal. Tuition for medical school is a significant cost and we wanted to ensure that we were married prior to embarking onto the journey. Additionally, we had to delay the process a twice when Ari changed jobs in favor of new opportunities. Lastly, despite the challenges of starting our family during the course of a pandemic we finally feel strongly that now is the time to move forward.

We want to thank the Chicago Coalition for Family Building and Jewish United Fund for this amazing grant.

Ariel and Benjamin are recipients of the Path to Parenthood Grant from the Jewish United Fund - Chicago. In August 2022, they welcomed their beautiful twins to the world and the Coalition is proud to have Ari serve as a Board Member.

When we found out that the next step was IVF, we thought our dreams were shattered