Let all who are hungry come and eat...

From the President – Alan Burger

Passover 2011

There is some exciting news to share with you. This year marks the 25th anniversary of MAZON Canada’s founding. Over the next several months, you will be hearing about new initiatives to celebrate our anniversary year. Since we were established in Canada in 1986, through your generosity, we have donated over $7 million to front line organizations who feed the hungry. We have struck a committee that will be working to recognize and honour our past while ensuring we can meet the needs of our community in the future. Stay tuned

You will also be hearing about the new team we are putting in place from the Officers to the Board in order to position MAZON for the challenges that lie ahead. As part of that positioning, I am delighted to inform you of the appointment, after an exhaustive search, of our new National Executive Director, Rachel Chertkoff. Rachel brings to MAZON an extensive background in communal advocacy and social action, having been most recently with the Canadian Jewish Political Affairs Committee as National Program Director. She also holds Masters of Arts degrees in both Jewish Communal Service and Communication Management. Rachel is eager to reach out to the MAZON family and hopes to hear from you. On your behalf, we wish Rachel and the entire MAZON organization much hatzlacha.

In a few months time, I will be stepping down as MAZON Canada President, after serving in this role for three years. Having been involved with a number of Jewish communal organizations, I can proudly say that MAZON holds a special place in my heart. It exemplifies the best values and principles of Judaism in seeking to help those who cannot fend for themselves. I have had the opportunity to meet and work with some outstanding people from the current and past Boards to the staff to the many volunteers, both in Toronto and Montreal. I am always impressed with their selfless dedication, professionalism and commitment. I want to thank the Officers (Murray Lukawitz, Susan Silverman, Suellen Boyd, Tammy Anklewicz, Cheryl Brott and Terry Landau), the entire Board of Directors, the Past Presidents and Daphne Delefes, our office manager, for their support, confidence and leadership.

As we prepare for Pesach, it is amazing how events in the Middle East today seem to be replicating what our ancestors experienced in Eretz Mitzrayim, the desire to be free, both spiritually and physically. The Exodus from Egypt is not only our holiday of freedom but also the beginning of our attempt at nation-building. Our sages tell us that we are obligated to picture ourselves as having once been slaves in order to appreciate the elation and gratitude that a life of freedom brings. As Pesach approaches, we need to try to imagine that feeling. Chag Kasher V’Sameach to all!

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