For the first time in 21 years, Camp George did not take place on Maple Lake. When this sad news was announced, many staff came forward to help keep our community connected and engaged this summer. They showed that our camp extends beyond Maple Lake.
Nine Camp George staff participated in either the Cornerstone or Nachshon Fellowships, which provide Jewish educational training and professional development for outstanding staff members. Fellows attended seminars where they learned a new set of skills from experienced Jewish educators. During this unusual summer, they implemented their new skills by creating virtual programs – something none of them had done before!
These programs provided a way for the community to stay connected and have fun, meaningful experiences. The programs they created were new as well as traditional and authentic to Camp George. One exceptional program the Cornerstone Fellows organized was a virtual Shabbat Idol. Eve (Cornerstone & Nachshon Fellow) explains, “This is a classic camp tradition and something that every age group at camp can be part of online”. We saw talent from staff and campers alike singing, dancing, and playing their instruments at home yet together.
Eve said, “I learned different ways to keep campers engaged online, such as games, activities, and other tactics to ensure that campers are not bored and having fun on zoom”. Although it was sometimes a challenge to engage campers online from their own homes, Samara (Nachshon Fellow), feels she developed skills in “communicating with campers in an appropriate way to engage them” in an online setting.
We asked the fellows why they decided to use their summer to stay involved and give back to the Camp George community. Samara (Nachshon Fellow) explained, “Camp George has given me so much, including my best friends and an escape from the city. I wanted to show my appreciation for all camp has given me”. Maddy (Cornerstone Fellow) said, “I was able to have a little taste of camp community this summer”.
We are so grateful for the amazing dedication and commitment of our fellows this summer. On behalf of the whole community, thank you!
Here is the list of summer 2020 Fellows: