Women's Philanthropy Campaign Chair Message

My name is Gilda Shahin-Abdulezer and it is my honour and privilege to assume the role of the 2016 Woman’s Philanthropy Campaign Chair.

As a member of the Montreal Jewish community, I am always so impressed by the wonderful work of our Federation CJA, and the Women’s Philanthropy team is there at the forefront. From the innovative programs that help seniors, or the way we take care of those that need assistance, Federation CJA is always there to help, be it here in Montreal, in Israel or anywhere in the world.

Being part of Federation CJA’s Women’s Philanthropy is such a wonderful experience on so many different levels:   It means being surrounded by countless dedicated women, each of whom will inspire you as they work tirelessly for the same common goal; ensuring that our community is taken care of, and that our Jewish identity stays strong now and in the future.

Our community is made up of diverse cultures from so many different backgrounds, but we come together as one to help the less fortunate, assist our seniors, support and guide our youth, and strive to ensure that our children’s future is strong, bright, proud and safe.

I became involved with Federation CJA in a number of ways over the last 7 years, beginning as a member of the JCC and then volunteering and consulting for Women’s Philanthropy, but it was when I participated in the 2014 Mega Mission and pre-trip to Poland that the real impact of community and what we do became so clearly defined for me.

My family was not personally touched by the Holocaust: As one of the more than 2,000 Montreal Iraqi Jews, I was blessed to come to Canada as an immigrant in 1962.  Sadly, other Iraqi Jews -- who remained in Iraq after the 6-day war-- experienced persecution, imprisonment and even torture.  Being in Poland, and then travelling to Israel defined for me that every Jew has been affected in some way, small or great, by discrimination or persecution, and that we, as a community, have the power to play a beneficial role in Tzedakah and social justice.

As Hillel said, “If not us, who? And if not now, when?”

We have a responsibility to give back in any way we can, so I encourage you to come and see how you can have an impact:  I promise you that you will get back so much more than you give.

You can see firsthand all the good that is being done every day; from helping those in need, to feeding the hungry.  The opportunities to get involved can vary from serving dinners at Le Café; to attending an event; to volunteering your time to make lunches for kids; to being part of a committee; or participating in a Mission to Montreal.

I hope you will join me on this incredible journey, joining other proud Jewish women, and making a difference in the lives of so many.

Gilda Shahin-Abdulezer
Chair, Women’s Philanthropy Campaign

Who We Are

Women's Philanthropy, a sisterhood of women united by acts of kindness and generosity dedicated to ensuring the continuity and vitality of our Jewish community

Our Mission: Women’s Philanthropy inspires and engages women over 40 to mobilize resources and strengthen the Jewish Community.

Our Vision: A strong and vibrant community for future generations.

Our Values: Jewish women taking responsibility for each other according to the principles of Chesed (caring and compassion), Torah (Jewish learning), Tikun Olam (repairing the world) and Tzedakah (social justice).

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Contact Us

Kim Garzon, Director of Women's Philanthropy
Tel: 514-735-3541 #6407

Women’s Philanthropy President’s Message

I am humbled and excited to assume the role of President of Women’s Philanthropy, and deeply grateful to my predecessor, Heather Adelson, for her steadfast enthusiasm and invaluable guidance in this position.

As a fourth-generation Montrealer, I have strong ties to this community, and care deeply about maintaining its growth and vibrancy for future generations. I still remember the group of deeply committed and caring women I sat around the table with 25 years ago, when I first got involved with Federation CJA. It was an honour to be a part of the Women’s Philanthropy team then just as it is to be a part of the great network of volunteers we have now. All those who came before me, who have made Women’s Philanthropy what it is today – a thriving sisterhood of women united by acts of kindness and generosity dedicated to ensuring the continuity and vitality of our Jewish community – are my inspiration.

There are so many ways to become involved in Women’s Philanthropy, whether it is by attending an event, making a donation, or volunteering with Tikun Olam. Your contribution makes a difference. As Margaret Mead said, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world – indeed it’s the only thing that ever has.” It has never been easier to get involved, to organize and to motivate. So come join us, and together we will continue to ensure that our community remains strong for our children and our children’s children.

Great opportunities and great challenges lie ahead of us, but with your help, we will be able to make this coming year the best year of Women’s Philanthropy yet!

Heather Paperman
President, Women’s Philanthropy

Lion of Judah

Lion of JudahThe Lion of Judah is an internationally recognized designation for women who personally contribute a minimum of $5,000 to the Combined Jewish Appeal annual campaign. The Lion of Judah recognizes and honours philanthropic women in Montreal and worldwide.

First introduced in Miami Women’s Division Campaign in 1972, the Lion of Judah pin was established as a representation of a woman’s commitment to the worldwide Jewish community. Upon its humble beginnings, only sixteen women qualified. Since then, the Lion’s roar has become louder and louder as more than 13,000 women around the globe now proudly call themselves Lions of Judah.

As a symbol of strength and majesty in the Jewish world, the Lion of Judah is a reminder that each woman can make a significant contribution at home, in Israel and anywhere in the world where Jews are in distress.

The Lion of Judah is also a symbol of unity – each woman who wears her pin is uniquely connected to all other Lions of Judah, all of whom embody the true meaning of tzedakah. These women have the determination, capability, and power to take the dream of Tikun Olam and turn it into a reality.

Montreal women have formed a community of international trailblazers with an astounding 575 Lions, and our numbers are on the rise. As a woman’s contribution grows, she is recognized for her philanthropy with a corresponding precious gem that is placed in the pin.

Click here to see our newsletter.

The following are the different annual Lion of Judah Giving Levels:


Platinum Designation

Canary Diamond Designation
$50,000 - $99,999

Amethyst Diamond Designation
$36,000 – $49,999

Sapphire Designation

Emerald Designation
$18,000 – $24,999

Ruby Designation
$10,000 – $17,999

Diamond Designation
$7,500 - $9,999

Lion of Judah Designation
$5,000 – $7,499

Pomegranate Society

Pomegranate Society

The Pomegranate Society is an internationally recognized designation for women who personally contribute between $1,800 - $4,999 to the Combined Jewish Appeal annual campaign.

Today’s women are interested in taking a hands-on approach to philanthropy. The Pomegranate Society recognizes this and, beyond raising money, we serve as the catalyst for women to perform mitzvoth. Federation CJA Montreal is the first Canadian Federation to introduce this international recognition society. The significance of the pomegranate is that it has 613 seeds and there are 613 mitzvot listed in the Torah.

It is really exciting for women to engage in projects that make our community better. Among other activities, members of the Pomegranate Society have volunteered at Le Café, where they served meals to families that are experiencing a difficult time. They have participated in Missions to Montreal, where they visited the agencies funded by Combined Jewish Appeal and learned about the scope of the challenges facing our community, and the great work done to help people cope.


Women’s Philanthropy Mosaic

Women’s Philanthropy Mosaic is a unique cookbook of over 100 delicious and innovative recipes that reflects the rich diversity of Montreal’s Jewish cuisine. A project of Federation CJA’s Women’s Philanthropy Division, all proceeds from this book will be used to support women in need.

$50 Click here to order our book now!



Download your Mosaic app at the App Store and get a handy ingredients list for each recipe.
Women’s Philanthropy Mosaic Cookbook - Federation CJA


The Mosaic Cookbook is also available at the following locations:

Abe & Mary’s 4175 Jean-Talon West 514-448-6223
Ben & Tournesol 4915 Sherbrooke W. 514-481-5050
Bibliophile 5519, ch Queen-Mary 514-486-7369
Cummings Jewish Centre for Seniors 5700 Westbury 514-342-1234
DBS Fitness 4904, Jean Talon W., Suite 250 514-344-3532
Delmar 4058 Jean Talon St W 514-875-4800
Galerie 203 227 Rue Notre-Dame Ouest 514-439-4203
Java U 4775 Jean Talon West 514-345-9319
Jewish General Hospital Gift Shop 3755 Côte-Ste-Catherine Road 514-340-8222
Kidlink Books and Toys 5604 Monkland 514-482-4188
Linen Chest Leaside Village, 93 Laird Dr, Unit B , Toronto 416-425-0533
Linen Chest Pinecrest Shopping Center, 2685 Iris St., Ottawa 613-721-9991
Linen Chest Promenade Cathedrale,  625 Ste. Catherine St 514-282-9525
Linen Chest Riocan Center Kirkland, 3160 Jean-Yves St. 514-694-6276
Linen Chest Rockland Centre, 2305 Rockland Blvd. 514-341-7810
Mount Sinai Hospital Gift Shop 5690 Cavendish Boulevard 514-369-2225
Rodal’s 4689 Van Horne Ave 514-733-1876
Shaar Hashomayim Gift shop 450 Kensington Avenue 514-937-9474
St-Laurent Coiffure Aldo & Co 1 Westmount Square Suite 1200 514-934-3000
Temple Emanu-El-Beth Shalom 4100 Sherbrooke Street West 514-937-3575