Gilda Shahin-Abdulezer

Women's Philanthropy Campaign Chair, 2015-2016

When I opened my own business as a corporate meeting and event planner, it was suggested that I join the Jewish Chamber of Commerce (JCC), which I did and enjoyed very much. I was then asked to chair a JCC event and was subsequently invited to volunteer my time doing marketing for the JCC, which led to being asked to handle marketing for the Women’s Philanthropy division. I fell in love with the many wonderful women of WP, lay and professional, who were all amazing and inspiring.

Being a bus captain for the 2104 Mega Mission. I went on the pre-mission to Poland, visited Auschwitz, and then on to Israel with 700 members of the Montreal Jewish community. Being in Israel on the mission really made an impact on me, showing me all that Federation does, here in Montreal, in Israel and around the world, and how we are responsible for giving back and helping in any way we can.

I would suggest volunteering for any one of the many programs Federation CJA offers, and seeing first hand all the wonderful work that is done. Volunteering with a friend also helps, and talking to any of the professionals or other volunteers is a great way to get started. I would tell anyone that canvassing donors is not something to be afraid of, and that it can be a very rewarding experience when you know that you are not asking for yourself, but rather, for the many in our community who need help.

I hope my legacy will be that someone like me, who was never involved but started later on in life, can show others like me that Federation is an amazing organization. Giving back -- be it financially or of your time-- is so important, because as our campaign slogan said, no matter what you give, you get back, So Much More.

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