UN Human Rights Council 43rd Session February 2020


As a participant of all four  UN World Conferences for Women, in Mexico City 1975, Copenhagen 1980, Nairobi 1985 and Beijing 1995, I have been privileged to follow the progress in solving the plight of women. Each Conference gave us incentives for further action. Women have been more accepted as integral to the sustainable development goals.


The Beijing Declaration and the Platform for Action adopted in 1995 set strategic objectives and actions for the advancement of women and the achievement of gender equality in  several critical areas of concern. If only meagre progress,  at least awareness has been achieved concerning many of the objectives (now SDGs). Gender-based violence, women’s economic empowerment and gender equality have become priority issues as well as the violation of women’s human rights under the name of cultural tradition. Without Gender Equality (Number 5 of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals) none of the SDGs will be achieved.


One of the areas, which has regressed, are the media with the enhanced power to present, create and manipulate through the new technology. The no limits-principle has also meant erasing  the rules of good conduct in the media. My organisation the International Council of Jewish Women is highly aware of this.


With the decline of journalism to be replaced by pseudo-individualism,  conservative and set images of women are reappearing more frequently and the change from object to subject has  not fully materialised. The new technology is as a rule created and managed by men.


The regression  in the media constitutes a real and concrete danger to the development of women towards full equality. Global and regional institutions seem unable to set standards against this negative development. This area of concern as well as the other SDGs all need an urgent call for action in the UN and its agencies, civil society and NGOs.


Thank you for your attention.

National Council of Jewish Women of Canada - Vancouver wants to spread our message of hope and compassion.

We believe that a single action can make a difference in the community and that collective action can greatly impact the world.  Through advocacy and outreach activities, our team works tirelessly to contribute our part to the greater good.

National Council

of Jewish Women of Canada - Vancouver 

Our Mission

National Council of Jewish Women of Canada - Vancouver is a volunteer organization that is dedicated to the needs of both the Jewish and general communities through advocacy, education and social action. Since 1924, we have identified concerns and issues facing the community and developed innovative programs to address them. We continuously nurture new projects that focus on a wide variety of concerns.

Board of Directors and Staff

President: Cate Stoller
Past President: Debby Altow
VP for Social Action: Anne Lerner 
VP of Admin: Rochelle Garfinkel 
Treasurer: Fran Ritch
Recording Secretary: Linda Arato


info@ncjwvancouver.org  phone: 604 257 5180

The fiscal year is May 1 to April 30. 
The AGM is scheduled within 6 months of the fiscal year end. 

Our Distinguished History

1924: Founded Vancouver Section, established Sunday am religious school, night school for English study for immigrant Jews.
1927: Established Well-Baby clinic till 1938, when Metropolitan Health Centre became responsible; founded Council Camp. 
1932: Published first Council Cookbook.
1933: Established noodle factory to create employment for newcomers on relief in the depression.
1937: Opened first permanent Jewish camp in Western Canada. 
1942: Provided library and recreation area for soldiers in Terrace, BC.
1949: Sponsored English night school classes, sent overseas aid to Israel through “Ship-a-Box”.
1949: Donated $12,500 to JCC building fund for Golden Age lounge.
1950: Opened the first Golden Age Club at the JCC, led by Bessie Diamond and Thelma Ginsburg 
1953: Operated thrift shops until 1979 as fundraisers and assisting disadvantaged
1956: Helped resettle Hungarian refugees
1965: Initiated first Head Start preschool in Vancouver in Riley Park
1970: Established Jewish Historical Society of BC with CJC, Pacific Region; UBC Bessie Diamond Memorial Scholarship for mature women students
1971: Initiated Schools for Citizen Participation;  established Welcome Wagon/Info Centre at JCC
1972: Piloted preschool hearing screening program, leading to the gift of two mobile screening vans to Vancouver Health Dept.
1973: Coordinated first Tay Sachs clinic on European Jewish genetic diseases
1974: Published fifth edition of the Council Cookbook, A Treasury of Jewish Recipes
1975: Launched support for Israel Family Counselling Agency (now ALUMA) with Council sections across Canada
1980: Inaugurated: scholarship for Graduate Women’s Studies at SFU;  scholarship at Vancouver Academy of Music
1982: Co-sponsored and provided seed money for creation of L’Chaim, Adult Day Care Centre
1985: Published first edition of “Shalom! Welcome to Vancouver Directory”
1987: Hosted International Council of Jewish Women and NCJW Canada convention
1988: Published second edition of “Shalom!”, funded by Jewish Federation of Vancouver
1990: Published seventh edition of Council Cookbook, Bubbe’s Kitchen
1990: Established Shalom BC Welcome and Referral volunteer service;  outreach program for seniors;  STAR volunteer register for the community;  
1991: Piloted the HIPPY program (originating in Israel) with Simon Fraser University and Britannia Community Centre to enhance the lives of immigrant children and their families
1994: Piloted Kosher Meals on Wheels
2001: Established Books for Kids to donate new and gently used books through Vancouver Public Health nurses network
2001: Established Operation Dress Up  to provide clothing  for disadvantaged children and gift certificates to enable adolescents  to choose their own clothing
Expanded Books for Kids - partners with Elizabeth Fry Society, Safe Babies program (for all infants in foster care), Vancouver Public Library, Public Health nurses for children in at-risk families, Vancouver Children’s Hospital for paediatric  assessment, Healthiest Babies
Provide books in the first language of pre-post natal mother at risk
Jewish Family Services Food Security including Kosher Meals on Wheels
Wellness for Inner City Children - basic hygiene, dental health, anger management, anti-bullying, healthy eating, making good choices
Visions for At Risk Youth - after school athletic enrichment activities, help with homework, field trips
Mothers Matter (Indigenous HIPPY) - distribution of books, nutrition boxes
Nanook Daycare - funded critical kitchen equipment for Mount Pleasant Early Childhood and Family Centre
Strong Start Vancouver School Board Program - equipment purchase
YWCA Crabtree Corner - Bags, Books and Babies program
Aluma - continued support for Israeli family counselling agency
Jewish Book Fair at the Jewish Community Centre

Feel free to contact us:

National Council of Jewish Women of Canada - Vancouver

302 - 950 West 41st Ave, Vancouver, BC , V5Z 2N7

604 257 5180