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imageYoung Judaea
Camp Young Judaea Texas

Summer 2020 Update

Sadly, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, CYJ has made the difficult decision to cancel our summer sessions.  As the Director, I couldn’t guarantee that this summer would be as
safe and fun as it needs to be, and I will not break my promise to our campers, parents, and staff.

Frank Silberlicht
Camp Director

Click here to read our full announcement.

Click here to see a special video to our campers from Frank.

Click here to watch the Camp Families Town Hall  (Password to view: 0F+0=6Ex)

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the factors that informed the decision to cancel in-person programming for the summer?

We have been in deep conversation with local, regional, and federal medical authorities, and leaders in camping. While we have continued to plan, prepare, pray, and hope for another transformative summer at camp, the risks posed by COVID-19 threaten our most sacred value – the health and well-being of our community. Ultimately, there are too many risks for us to create an acceptable pathway forward for this summer. These risks also compromise our ability to provide the excellence in programming and participant care that are hallmarks of our camp.

Is it possible that camp could open later than expected? Could we still have camp for part of the summer?

If new information emerges at any point and we can re-evaluate the potential for in-person gatherings, we will do so as a top priority.

When will summer 2021 registration open? Should we expect the summer to be different?

Decisions about when 2021 registration is opening will be made in the coming months after we have managed the 2020 logistics with our camp families. We want to stay true to the program you have come to know and love – and that ensures maintaining our commitment to health, safety, and program excellence. We don’t know yet what the new realities created by COVID-19 could mean for the fall and beyond, but we are doing everything we can to be ready to open registration as usual.

How can I support my camper at this time?

Camp’s closure this summer is devastating for campers, families, and our whole community. We encourage you to talk to your kids about this and to let them express their feelings. Everyone will process this news in his or her own way, but the following guiding principles may help when determining your approach to discussing it with your children:

  • Be empathetic and understanding
  • Encourage them to connect with their camp friends regularly, and to participate in virtual experiences with them this summer
  • It might take your child a few days to process the news – they might not want to talk right away, but let them know you’re there if and when they’re ready
  • There will be opportunities to come back to camp soon; we hope to offer a camp weekend or winter break experience as soon as we can responsibly do so, and we are confident CYJ will be able to welcome all of our campers back next summer
  • Let us know if we can be of assistance helping your camper adjust to this new reality.

Please see our resource on Helping Your Campers Cope with Camp’s Cancellation.

How can I help camp at this time?

Thank you for asking this question – we are moved by (and need) your support! We made the decision to cancel in-person activities at camp this year based on our values, and with the health and safety of our campers and staff as our top priority. It is important for us to share, too, that the financial ramifications of this decision are significant.

We know that might cause questions about what this news means for camp and what it means for you in terms of tuition that you’ve already paid. Right now, we are focusing on supporting our campers and families in processing this news. We will follow-up with more details along with opportunities to support one another and camp through this unprecedented moment. You’ll be able to choose from several options on how to handle your tuition, including the options to make a donation that will be generously matched by the Harold Grinspoon Foundation, credit fees paid for use on future CYJ programs, or receive a full refund.

What programming are you offering during the summer?

We have been running limited virtual programming for several weeks now. We hope your family has participated in and enjoyed these opportunities. 

If we can’t bring you to camp, we’ll bring camp to you! We are going to be sharing new opportunities to connect virtually and (if possible) in person throughout this summer. Stay tuned for updates in the coming weeks.

What about my camp tuition that I’ve paid for the summer?

Families have a choice for how to handle tuition they’ve already paid for this summer:

  1. Turn your tuition into a charitable donation that will be generously matched by the Harold Grinspoon Foundation
  2. Credit fees paid and roll them forward for use on a future CYJ program
  3. Receive a full refund

Next week, a member of your family will receive a form with more details that can be completed with your preferred choice.

What about tuition assistance I have received for this summer?

We will have to return scholarship money received to many of the organizations who provide tuition assistance to our campers. We recognize that many families’ financial situations have changed in the past few months and will continue to change over the course of the year. By applying next year, the various entities will be able to evaluate your most current financial circumstances.

The One Happy Camper grant funds for first time campers will be automatically rolled over to next summer’s tuition.

How do we transfer our enrollment to next year?

Families have a choice to forward 2020 program registration fees paid for future use. Decisions about when 2021 registration is officially opening will be made in the coming months after we have managed the 2020 logistics with all of our camp families.

We want to stay true to the program you have come to know and love – and that ensures maintaining our commitment to health, safety, and program excellence. We don’t know yet what the new realities created by COVID-19 could mean for the fall and beyond, but we are doing everything we can to be ready to open registration as usual.

This is my child's Segel or CIT summer. Will there be an option for them to complete this program next year?

We understand the importance of these experiences for our campers and are exploring options to provide those unique opportunities. 

  • Segel campers will be given the opportunity to enroll in Segel for 2021 with their own aidah and session. 
  • CITs are invited to apply to work at camp as madrichim for Summer 2021 and will be notified about year-round counselor and training opportunities.