With Seed Help, Niche Camps Hope to Draw More Young Jews

March 25, 2010

Source: JTA


Five new Jewish camps are launching across the United States this summer with seed money from the Specialty Camps Incubator run by the Foundation for Jewish Camp and funded by the Jim Joseph Foundation with a $10.1 million grant two years ago. The hope is that these new camps will fill niches and draw hundreds more young Jews to Jewish camps.


The incubator has helped start Passport NYC at the 92nd Street "Y" in Manhattan, a program offering its participants several New York-specific tracks involving three weeks of immersion in popular "specialties" such as film, fashion, culinary arts, the music industry and baseball, Eden Village Camp, a pluralistic coed camp in upstate New York focused on Jewish environmentalism; Adamah Adventures in Georgia, which will take Jewish teens on "thrilling, awe-inspiring outdoor adventures"; the Six Points Sports Academy in North Carolina; and Ramah Outdoors in Colorado, which offers adventures for teens in the Rocky Mountains.


Each of the camps has been given a $1.1 million spread over five years to launch and become self sufficient by attracting a critical mass of campers. Each camp is provided a mentor who is an expert in starting and running camps similar to those being launched, and the five camps consult with each other about best practices for success as they meet the processes set up by the incubator for both starting and growing.

Updated: Apr. 18, 2010