A dedicated UJA fundraiser and active community member for nearly three decades, David Weinberg has some invaluable advice about the art of volunteer fundraising. He chatted with our team about what he loves about our community, his approach to making an ask, and how he stays engaged in the work every Campaign.

What initially brought you to UJA?

29 years ago, at my first UJA meeting, I discovered there were almost 20,000 Jewish people in Toronto living below the poverty line. This is what drew me in. I had no idea. I was amazed to discover how UJA was helping these and others in so many ways.  

What has kept you coming back to volunteer, year after year?

I believe there is no sensible reason not to help others if we have the means, whether that be our time, talent, or treasure. Every type of contribution is valuable. I’ve always loved the role as a volunteer and now I also enjoy being a mentor–using my experience to brainstorm better ways of doing things with newer volunteer fundraisers. I also love being part of our volunteer community of like-minded people, all who want to contribute to something bigger than themselves.

How do you react when the work gets challenging?

My attitude is you actually cannot lose. Before you ask, you’ve got no pledge, so when you ask, you can only break-even or win. Nothing is better than getting a "yes" – it elevates both people in the canvas. We are giving others the opportunity to do something amazing. It’s a mitzvah to ask and it's a mitzvah to give. Every rejection, while disappointing, is just an opportunity to learn more for the next call.

Are you ready to help the Jewish people by fundraising for UJA’s Annual Campaign? Click here to email UJA’s Rachel Doppelt and learn more.