PJ Library Goes to Camp Komaroff!

Posted on Friday, May 22, 2015 at 12:00:00 pm

Camp Komaroff is receiving 25 books from PJ Library, a program within the Harold Grinspoon Foundation for the summer of 2015. More than 50 camps are receiving these books this summer for use by campers ages 4 through 8 to enhance Jewish literacy in JCC day camps.  This partnership between the Harold Grinspoon Foundation (HGF) and JCC Association reinforces the importance of Jewish literacy at a young age through day camp programs.

Last summer we were fortunate to receive books through PJ Library Goes to JCC Day Camps. These books quickly became a valuable asset to introduce Jewish values, traditions, holidays, and themes to our campers. At AJCC Camp Komaroff, we incorporate our daily activities into our weekly Jewish themes. By adding the PJ Library books we were able to enrich our programming (such as arts and crafts activities, mitzvah projects, and story time) and help our campers better understand these Jewish themes. We are thrilled to be receiving another collection of the PJ Library Goes to JCC Day Camps books for summer 2015. The addition of more PJ Library books will help to expand on the Jewish themes we teach at camp. Having a diverse collection of PJ Library books will also create excitement for returning campers so that they can read new stories.

This partnership and program is part of JCC Association’s Day Camp Initiative – a continental effort to raise the programming and profile of Jewish day camp.

“JCC day camps are the entry point into Jewish life for over 65,000 children each summer. We believe by providing valuable tools to enhance summer learning and programs connect, we campers to a life of Jewish engagement.” said Shara Perlman, assistant director of camping and youth engagement at JCC Association. “There’s also incredible potential to reach the 12,000 young adults who work at JCC day camps each summer,” Perlman added, noting that for most day camp staff, working at camp is not only their first real job, but their first exposure to Jewish communal work. 

This grant is another example of the broad-based support we receive from the Harold Grinspoon Foundation (HGF), both for JCCA and for local JCCs throughout the country.  HGF currently provides fundraising incentives and consulting mentors to 24 JCC day camps and 24 JCC residential camps throughout the United States.  In addition to marrying Harold Grinspoon’s two passions (Jewish camp and Jewish books) the PJ Library® grant for day camps helps unite two great arms of our local JCC partners.

“We are delighted to partner with JCC Association to offer this wonderful opportunity to day camps across the country,” said Mark Gold, executive director of HGF’s JCamp180.  “Many JCCs are partnering with their local PJ Library programs to provide another way for the community to impact families raising young children.  Since PJ Library sends the gift of Jewish books and music to children through age eight, this is one of many opportunities for mutual marketing support and joint program development.”

PJ Library started as a small project sending books to 200 children in Western Massachusetts in 2005. Now it delivers more than 144,000 Jewish books per month to children throughout North America with more than 14 million PJ Library books have been delivered globally in four languages since the program’s inception.  The Harold Grinspoon Foundation also invests over $2.2 million annually in Jewish summer camps, much of which is leveraged by those camps to provide $155 million in total impact.  For more information visit www.hgf.org.

Blog by Natalie Chernik

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