More than 20% of Montreal Jews are living at or below the poverty line. Despite common stereotypes, there are that many struggling to survive in normal times but particularly today under almost surreal circumstances.

In May 2005, four of Montreal’s leading entrepreneurs Jeffrey Hart, Jeffrey Baikowitz, Mark Beaudet and Jonathan Goodman organized the first of three charity poker tournaments in Montreal that raised over $500,000 for Street Kids International and the MUHC.

This pandemic brought the band back together again for one more show. Like most bands, members change.Beaudet has been replaced by Gideon Pollack. This time it won’t be poker but the more accessible game of on-line backgammon. Pollack said, “I don’t even know how to play backgammon But I know that Community needs luck.”

Goodman started playing the online version during the quarantine and the stakes were always a charitable donation to purchase a week of lunches for a child in need through Combined Jewish Appeal. He told The Suburban, “This group did poker charity together in 2005. The challenges that our Community’s most vulnerable are facing demand that that the band get together again.”

The on-line backgammon tournament is open to everyone and will be held on Sunday, June 28th at 1 p.m. . The lead corporate sponsor is Quebec-based Medicom Inc., the largest Canadian supplier of face masks and surgical gloves. There will be over $5,000 in prize money, which the organizers hopes the winners will donate back. As Hart told us, “I am fortunate to help organize and play in this fun event for those that have been less fortunate during this Covid crisis. It’s fun, but it’s about those in need.”

To register, tickets cost $180 and for an additional $180 you will receive a brunch for 4 people at your door on the Sunday morning of the event. To register on-line, one must simply go to;

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