Hillel Waterloo students pose for a group photo.

Hillel Waterloo students pose for a group photo.

What do you think about when Hillel on campus comes to mind? A Jewish student club? A drop-in Shabbat dinner? It’s a lot more than this, and has the potential to be a catalyst for a stronger Jewish community that resonates far beyond university campuses. This is why the Silber Family Foundation has come forward with a $1 million donation specifically to invest in talent at Hillel Ontario.

It’s rare in the non-profit sector to hear philanthropists talk about investing in people over program, but that is precisely what we are going to do. Extensive studies throughout the global Hillel movement consistently identify talent acquisition and development as the single greatest variable in meeting Hillel’s standard for excellence in student engagement.

Jewish engagement is not dependent on the quality of the food served at social events. Effective engagement is based on the relationship built with the person who greets students when they walk in the door. Our own research underscored how crucial this is to Hillel Ontario’s success. During strategic planning focus groups and interviews, the centrality of student relationships with Hillel campus professional emerged repeatedly...

What is Jewish engagement dependent on? Read the rest of the article at

$1 Million Gift to Hillel Ontario

For immediate release:

April 23, 2018

$1 Million Gift to Hillel Ontario to Transform Jewish Student Experience on Ontario University Campuses

The Silber Family Foundation has made an investment in talent to attract the best Jewish role models to engage Jewish students on Ontario campuses. Learn more at

TORONTO – Hillel Ontario is proud to announce the Silber Family Foundation has generously donated $1,000,000 to the organization in matching funds to invest in talent and attract the best Jewish role models to serve and engage Jewish students at universities across Ontario.

Hillel Ontario was challenged by the Silbers to “identify the single most important investment in Hillel that would have the greatest impact on student engagement.” This transformative investment in talent is inspired by the potential to impact not just Hillel but also the broader Canadian Jewish community.