Grant Seeks to Attract First-Time Campers


For those hoping to send their children to Jewish overnight camps, the road ahead may be a little less daunting, thanks to a new grant initiative geared toward first-time attendees.

Camp Galil in Ottsville, Bucks County, is one of a number of recipients of this new initiative.

Set up by the Jewish Funders Network/Foundation for Jewish Camping Matching Grants Initiative for New Camper Incentives, the program offers dollar-for-dollar matching funds for donations contributed to the camper incentive program. Camp Galil received a $25,000 anonymous donation, which was then matched by JFN.

Camp Galil was one of 19 overnight camps and Jewish agencies from across the United States and Canada to benefit from the JFN program, which awarded a total of $2 million in grants.

The new funds can be used for children in third through ninth grades "who [have] never been to Jewish overnight camp," according to Sharon Waimberg, executive director for the camp.

Waimberg said that the vouchers are available in the amount of $1,250 each. There is no deadline to apply; however, the vouchers are available on a first-come, first-served basis.

The funds can be applied toward any three week or longer session at Camp Galil for summer 2008, which begins June 22 and runs through Aug. 12.

Camp Galil was also a recent recipient of a Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia camper incentive grant with the same program mission. Waimberg explained that families who apply for the financial assistance will be eligible for only one grant program, not both.

Both programs are non-need-based. The Federation grant applies only to children who reside in the Philadelphia region; the JFN program is not restricted to children from the local area.

Waimberg said that the grant program will assist many families seeking to have their child immersed in a "24/7 communal environment."

Info? Call 484-684-6532.


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