The Secret Must-Have Packing List for Summer Camp

When you register your kids for Jewish summer camp, you’ll usually get a list of items that they must bring with them. It will seem to fully list everything your camper will need for their experience, from proper footwear to toiletries to Shabbat clothing. However, there are some items you may want to include that won’t be listed, but will make your camper’s experience even better. Here are just a few secret must-have items for your kid’s summer camp stay:

  1. A Headlamp

While flashlights are always helpful at camp, a headlamp is even better. It frees up your camper’s hands to build fires, pitch tents and do other activities without the inconvenience of finding somewhere to balance a flashlight while doing so. Plus, headlamps just look cool — experienced campers know the value of a good headlamp!

  1. Binoculars

Binoculars are a great tool for your camper. Though they may not use them every day, they can really come in handy on days when campers go on treks through the woods. Binoculars often aren’t included on packing lists because they can be expensive, but for older campers who are responsible, they can be a great investment.

  1. Eggcrate Foam Mattress Topper

If you’ve ever been to camp, you probably know that the mattresses in the cabin aren’t as comfortable as your mattress back home. An eggcrate foam mattress topper is a great solution. It will help your camper get the sleep they need to fully enjoy their experience. Eggcrate cushioning can also provide that extra level of comfort if your kid will be spending a night camping in the woods.

Before making your packing list, it’s important to find the right Jewish camp. Often, one of the most important factors is the price. If you want to send your kids to camp, but may not be able to afford it, the Atlanta Jewish Federation can help. Contact us today to learn more about financial resources for Jewish camp.

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Life Lessons Only Summer Camp Can Offer

Sleepaway camp is often the highlight of the summer — for kids and parents alike. Kids get to spend time learning new skills and forging new friendships, while parents get a week or two to themselves. Yet, when the kids come home, they often do so as new people. Though camp may be over for the summer, it transforms how they see the world. The life lessons they’ve learned at camp will stay with them for a lifetime:

  1. A Bolder Self-Image

At camp, one of the main goals is to get kids out of their comfort zones. No leap is too big at camp, especially when your new friends are cheering you on. Even when campers come up just short of the goal, the valiant attempt is celebrated. In everyday life, this translates into being more confident with one’s self, especially when trying new things. Plus, those new friendships are often ones that last a lifetime!

  1. A More Equitable Worldview

Campers come from all socioeconomic backgrounds. Yet, at camp, everyone is equal. Status disappears as every kid is simply being a kid. No matter what neighborhood you come from, you are just as much a part of the camp community as the next kid. This fosters a sense that, at the end of the day, we are all just people, and all deserve encouragement and empathy — a valuable lesson to bring home.

  1. A Stronger Sense of God’s Presence

When your kid goes to Jewish camp, there is always an underlying feeling of God’s majesty in every activity and in the nature surrounding them. It is often at camp that kids truly fall in love with Judaism, from its traditions to the community to what it truly means to be Jewish. In fact, kids who attend Jewish camp are much more likely to stay engaged in their faith as an adult.

Going to summer camp is a valuable experience for every Jewish child, but we know it can be difficult to afford for some families. The Jewish Federation of Greater Atlanta is here to help. Contact us today to learn more about financial resources for Jewish camp.

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