Life & Legacy

Each of us, regardless of age, wealth, or affiliation, has the ability to leave a legacy.

Caring for Today, Building for Tomorrow.

A legacy gift to your Jewish community enables you to be present now, and forever. For your family. For your community.
For Israel. For the Jewish people. Your gift will keep our Jewish community strong for generations.

Shape the Future with Your Legacy.


How you choose to allocate your financial legacy says a lot about the causes you hold dear and the life you've built over the years. Whether it's aiding those living below the poverty line, assisting the elderly, providing Jewish education, fighting antisemitism or strengthening community security measures – you can ensure that the causes dearest to your heart continue to thrive today and tomorrow.

Through your gift, you'll always be there whenever help is needed, passing down your values to your children and future generations.


Reflect and Plan Your Legacy.


Take a moment to reflect on your Jewish journey and the values you hold dear. What legacy do you wish to leave behind?

Our free Legacy book offers a space for you to document your unique journey and your vision for a Jewish future.


The impact of your Legacy gift

Your legacy gift, regardless of size, can be customized and structured to fit your dreams, lifestyle, family, and financial needs. It will ensure:
Provide vital support for those in need today and tomorrow.
Ensure safety and protection for all members of our community.
Enhance educational opportunities for future generations.
Preserve Jewish values, traditions, and culture.
Ready to learn more?
Leave your contact information, and our team will be in touch to discuss how you can create a meaningful legacy.
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Questions and Answers

Why Leave a Legacy Gift?

How Will My Legacy Gift Help the Future of Our Community?

How Do I Participate?

What Are My Next Steps?

  1. Reflect on your Jewish interests. To assist in this process, download our free My Legacy Story handbook.
  2. Contact Federation CJA at (514) 345-6402 or email [email protected].
  3. Have a follow-up conversation with a Life & Legacy Team Member.
  4. Click here to download and sign your Letter of Intent.
  5. If necessary, formalize your commitment by consulting with a financial or legal advisor.


Andrew Koenig and his parents arrived in Montreal as refugees in 1951 with $300 to their name. Newcomers in an unfamiliar land, their first stop was a Jewish immigrant aid group.
The agency offered a small sum to help the family rebuild their lives after they’d survived the Holocaust and fled their native Hungary. Beyond the monetary support, the group provided guidance and a warm welcome to help the family get their bearings in a new country.
Andrew, who is 89, never forgot the care and kindness shown to his family when they needed it. It’s why he and his wife, Yvonne, have chosen to support Federation CJA’s Life & Legacy Program.
Andrew and Yvonne met in the textile trade in 1976 and went on to build a successful business together, and they always shared the same philosophy: “Giving is a pleasure, and if you’re in a position to do it, it becomes an obligation,” Andrew says.
Federation’s reach in the community means their gift will make a difference in the lives of the most vulnerable. “Federation does its best to take care of the needs of the community,” Andrew says. “There will always be a percentage of our brothers and sisters who are less fortunate than we are. If we can help, we will.”
Charitable giving has been a lifelong commitment. Andrew and his wife have created the Yvonne and Andrew Koenig Graduate Scholarship in medical studies, and they recently shipped a large container of medical fabric to Ukraine for hospital gowns. Andrew is also a director on the board of Hebrew Free Loan.
His donations are his way of carrying forward the values imparted by his parents, Louis and Irene. “They raised me to believe that community was important, and that we need to share with others.”
Andrew has now passed those beliefs onto his children and grandchildren. He recalls walking on the street with his grandson, then aged 3, when they came across a panhandler. Andrew reached into his pocket and handed the man some money. His grandson asked him why he did it.
“Because it’s our responsibility to help people when we can,” Andrew replied.
The boy understood. “He told me afterwards, ‘That man already feels better,’” Andrew says.
It’s the same with the gift to Life & Legacy. Federation’s work with community agencies helps those in need feel better, and Andrew wants to sustain that mission long into the future. “It’s a matter of continuity.”


Marion Caplan learned about the spirit of giving at a young age. Her father, Ben, ran a snack bar in downtown Montreal and insisted on extending credit to university students who couldn’t afford a meal.
Her mother, Sarah, grew up in the Laurentians, where her family struggled to make ends meet and sometimes relied on the generosity of others. One cold winter day, after noticing that there was no smoke coming from the chimney, a neighbouring farmer gave the family enough wood to heat their home for several weeks.
Marion’s mother and father never failed to think of others who might need help. Every Friday, Sarah lit the shabbat candles and put a few coins into the Jewish National Fund’s blue donation box.
“My parents donated what they could, and it was always from the heart,” Marion says.
These values continued to inspire Marion and her late husband, Lazarus, to support many charitable causes in Montreal and Israel. This year, in celebration of her 80th birthday, she is ensuring that her legacy of giving continues by supporting the Life & Legacy program of Federation CJA.
“I’m not going to live forever,” she says. “It makes me feel good knowing that I’ll be helping—even after I’m gone.”
Her daughters support their mother’s commitment to Life & Legacy. “They’re happy that I’m supporting the Montreal Jewish community”, said Marion, “and believe that the work Federation does is so important.” A legacy gift means security and stability for the many causes supported by Federation CJA.
For Marion, it comes down to tzedakah, the moral obligation to do what is right and just and treat people with compassion and respect. As a Lion of Judah, Marion embraces this notion and has passed it down to her daughters, who are dedicated to their respective Jewish communities. In fact, Andrea is a Lion of Judah in Chicago and Stephanie is a Lion of Judah in Toronto, which makes Marion very proud.
“I was blessed, I had a happy home and a wonderful husband and children who were, and still are, amazing,” she says. “It makes me feel good knowing that I’m continuing the tradition of tzedakah, just as my parents did. It comes from my heart.”


Gary Ulrich received a gift at the age of 18 that influenced him for the rest of his life. A talented athlete, he was selected to represent Canada in basketball at the Maccabiah Game in Israel. To help him get there, the Jewish community gave him a subsidy.
That subsidy, and the trip that followed, would have a profound impact. “It was one of the most transformational experiences of my life,” he says.
Gary decided to give back—and he’s been giving back ever since. For 60 years, he has led tireless fundraising efforts for the Jewish community and helped send thousands of young athletes to the Maccabiah Games. And now, at age 83, he’s ensuring that his charitable giving lives on: he’s supporting the Life & Legacy Program of Federation CJA.
“I’m at a stage in life where I want to leave a legacy that will have a lasting impact on a community that has been such an important part of my life,” he says. “Life & Legacy is about ensuring the strength and vitality of the Jewish community well into the future. The Montreal Jewish community is one of the most generous in the diaspora. We’ve built a network of agencies that touch every aspect of people’s lives and we’ve developed a strong community spirit.”
“These are all worth preserving.”
The commitment to Life & Legacy extends to Gary’s entire family. He and each of his four daughters chose an agency to benefit from his legacy gift, and each daughter will continue to be responsible for that gift going forward. Even though only one of them still lives in Montreal, all four daughters will maintain a future connection to the city.
“Not only will they continue the Ulrich family legacy, they’ll also strengthen their ties to the Montreal Jewish community,” Gary says. “Passing on these values to the next generation and getting my daughters involved was a no-brainer. It’s something I’m very proud of.”
The Life & Legacy gift builds on Gary’s lifelong commitment to giving. He was president of Maccabi Canada and Chair of CJA during Israel’s milestone 50th anniversary. In 2019, he received the Manny Batshaw Award for Longstanding Community Service by Federation CJA in Montreal. 
His involvement gave him an inside glimpse into how Federation helps the most vulnerable, he says. “I’ve seen firsthand how much these agencies accomplish on a daily basis. They really work miracles.”
With Life and Legacy, Gary is carrying forward the values he learned from his parents: that regardless of your worth or wealth, what matters is how charitable you are.
“Charity is a timeless Jewish value that reflects our mission to be a light unto others. We need to keep lighting the way for the next generation and the one after that,” he says. 
Helping those who are less fortunate is simply the right thing to do, he believes. “This is something I’ve always taught my kids, and now my grandkids.”
Gary has been paying it forward since the age 18—returning a gift he received as a teenager, which he never forgot.

About Life & Legacy

Life & Legacy is a partnership between Federation CJA, the Jewish Community Foundation (JCF), and the Harold Grinspoon Foundation (HGF) that promotes after-lifetime giving to benefit the Montreal Jewish community. Your legacy gift can be of any size and can be customized and structured to fit your dreams, lifestyle, family and financial needs.

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