The National Council of Jewish Women of Canada is a voluntary organization which, in the spirit of Judaism, is dedicated to furthering human welfare in the Jewish and general communities Locally, Nationally and Internationally. Through an integrated program of education, service and social action, the organization helps to fulfil unmet needs and to serve the individual and the community.
December 2022 – Message from the President of NCJWC
As the incoming President of this amazing organization it is my pleasure to introduce the new officers of the NCJWC Board for the term 2022-2025.
Debbie Wasserman, Immediate Past President; VP’S Eva Karpati, Naomi Kingston, Monika Simon; Bianca Krimberg, Treasurer; Rebecca Asbell, Secretary and Helen Marr, Honourary President.
I am very excited to work with these inspirational and passionate women. Together we have already begun to work on the 4 pillars of our vision for the next three years; Volunteer Engagement, Strategic Planning, Social Action, and Commitment to Israel.
Our volunteers are the core of Council and play an important role in all that we do, helping to make an impact in our communities. The work of our Sections defines our place on the Canadian Jewish landscape. We have come a long way, addressing needs as they arise, continuing a link to the ideas and dreams of National’s Founding Members 130 years ago. We will continue to focus on these aspirations by ensuring our volunteers have meaningful involvement in shaping our National Agenda.
A second area of focus will be to create a National Strategic Plan with input from our members and provide support to the Sections with their Strategic Plan endeavours.
The thrust of our commitment to Social Action will focus on fighting antisemitism. We have an important role as a National organization to speak up and continue to address antisemitism across the county. Currently, ‘The Women 2 Women Countering Racism’ focus group is developing a multi pronged action plan to share and present to multifaith communities.
I am looking forward to keeping you informed of our activities.
Happy Chanukah, Chag Sameach
Wishing you and your families peace and happiness and may your candles burn bright.
Past President's Message
A Message from Debbie Wasserman, Immediate Past President of NCJWC
I now have passed on the torch of the NCJWC Presidency to Linda Steinberg. I am confident our organization will continue to thrive under Linda’s leadership.
During my Presidency, we succeeded in raising our profile and becoming involved in new endeavors. This is all thanks to a progressive, engaged board.
During the 5 years of my tenure as president, on the National front:
- the NCJWC Presidents’ Council was established in 2018 to give the Section Presidents a platform to meet and share ideas, difficulties and initiatives, consulting with one another along with the National President.
- a new Simcoe County Section was established in 2019 thanks to the leadership of Helen Silverstein that continues to grow.
- We presented a four-part series on Women and Justice and a webinar featuring 3 prominent Canadian journalists speaking on Journalists defending Human Rights.
- Last year, as an initiative to join our western sections together, Edmonton, Vancouver and Winnipeg, were invited to work on a project in their cities aimed at helping vulnerable women and children using the banner ‘Creating Connections’. Each section achieved the goal in a unique way satisfying a need in their individual community. Hopefully this was the first of many more joint projects.
- Encouraged by the Honourable Irwin Cotler, we partnered with the Raoul Wallenberg Centre in Montreal to present the film ‘Nasrin’, about a brave female Iranian political prisoner who stood up for women’s rights. This was followed by a panel including Prof. Cotler, speaking about her challenges and how we could advocate for her release. As a National organization we urged our government officials to act on her behalf.
- We established multi-level government relationships to support the fight against antisemitism, being invited to roundtable discussions to offer suggestions.
- We collaborated and created working relationships and partnerships with many organizations including The Montreal Holocaust Museum, B’nai Brith, CIJA , The Raoul Wallenberg Centre and Friends of Simon Weisenthal.
- We initiated the creation of Women to Women Countering Racism focus group. Finding partners from other persecuted groups, we aim to work together on this issue promoting love, compassion and inter-group understanding.
We worked to increase our international presence:
- NCJWC is actively involved in ICJW – NCJWC members on the executive in key positions, including myself as a Vice President.
- We became involved in the London-based Women’s Commonwealth Jewish Network at its inception, where I serve on its steering committee.
- We promoted the Every Women Treaty, a global campaign to amplify the call for an international treaty to end violence against women and girls. This is a coalition of 1700 individuals and organizations from 128 countries and is leading this effort. By contacting other Canadian women’s organizations and encouraging them to add their support we expanded the coalition.
Now, it is up to Linda and the new Board of Directors to continue to enhance our presence and our importance in the landscape of the country. I am certain we will carry on with fortitude, perseverance, determination, and enthusiasm as has been the NCJWC way. I look forward to our future.
Wishing you all a very Happy Chanukah!