Foundation for Jewish Camp seeking ‘specialty camps’ proposals


NEW YORK (JTA) — The Foundation for Jewish Camp is accepting applications for its “specialty camps accelerator.”

The accelerator seeks to “fast-track” the establishment of eight new Jewish summer camps that offer “a distinct” specialty and will open in North America in the summer of 2018, according to a news release issued by the foundation. The project is similar to the foundation’s specialty camp incubator, which has helped establish nine new Jewish overnight camps throughout the United States since 2010, among them a science-themed one, several sports camps and one focused on environmental sustainability.

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Specialty camps are designed to appeal to young people, particularly teens, who might not otherwise consider a Jewish camp.

Unlike the incubator, the accelerator, which had two camps in its pilot cohort, both of which will open next summer, offers consulting services only and not funding. Applicants are required to secure local funding.

Preference for the incubator, funded with a grant from the Avi Chai Foundation, will go to concepts “that have the greatest attraction in the marketplace,”

“The Incubator and Accelerator models have given us a forum to pilot new educational models by integrating Jewish learning with activities that kids are passionate about — the environment, performing arts, sports, and outdoor adventure,” Jeremy Fingerman, CEO of the Foundation for Jewish Camp, said in the news release. “To date, the Specialty Camps have touched thousands of lives in an intentional, outcomes-based model of building new camps. The nine camps in aggregate have already provided a meaningful Jewish and specialty camp experience to over 5,000 unique campers.”

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