Learning about Jewish Values in Khabarovsk, Russia Ages: 13-16 years old
In Khabarovsk, Russia campers delved into the vast world of Jewish values. Through the use of traditional and modern texts, the campers learned about different values and teachings. In the seven days they were in camp, they touched on the following subjects: Faith, unity, and solidarity, individual and collective responsibility, faith, charity, Anti-Semitism, the Holocaust, and Israel. Read more...
Campers creatively expressed what they had learned on Jewish values.
August 9 -16th, 2009
Sages in Samara, Russia
Ages: 14- 16
Albert Einstein once said, "The important thing is not to stop questioning."
In Samara, campers enthusiastically played a game called 'Sages' where they asked many questions and learned loads about Jewish principles and traditions. Read more...
July 19 – 27, 2009
Campers Celebrate 15 years of Jewish Agency Camping in Kharkov, Ukraine
Ages: 15- 17
Special moments were shared during this camp session as campers and staff celebrated the 15th year of camping in Kharkov, Ukraine. Kharkov has been the scene of a vibrant camp framework and approximately half of the campers are returnees. The veteran and new campers and staff reminisced about past camp sessions, and looked through old photo albums together and discussed how their camp has developed throughout the years. Read more...
Fifteen years of Jewish camping in Kharkov is a great reason to rejoice!
August 6 -13, 2009
Campers build their own 'Master Town' in
Ages: 17- 25
In the second session of camp in Riga, the student - age campers were busy building what their counselors had dubbed 'Master Town'. The campers were given their own space at camp which they were responsible for arranging, both in physical terms and in relationship to the other campers and staff. The campers worked intensively with many different types of materials which helped them create their own physical world based around their thoughts and feelings. Read more...
Campers listening to a lecture on Jewish and Israeli symbols.
August 13 – 17, 2009
The Jewish World and Me in Yekaterinburg, Russia
Ages: 17 – 25
Campers came, from far and wide, to participate in this special camp organized for students in the city of Yekaterinburg, which is situated on the Eastern side of the Ural Mountains.
The main themes of the camp revolved around the following questions:
- What do I have to become a part of the Jewish people?
- What are my obligations as part of the Jewish people?
Campers chose one or more projects to focus on during the camp. The projects included Jewish texts, Hebrew, Jewish leadership, Holocaust studies, Israeli cuisine, the Israeli reality and current events.
Hebrew studies at camp.
August 12 – 19, 2009
Taking Pride in Being Jewish in Odessa, UkraineAges: 7 – 12
In the port city of Odessa, campers took great pride in being Jewish as they explored the themes of Jewish history, Shabbat, and various Jewish communities around the world. The counselors helped the children translate all the information into a language that was comprehensible to them through text study and the use of creative materials. Campers benefitted from the informal educational environment which was instrumental in building their Jewish identity and a sense of belonging to the Jewish people.
Campers in the midst of painting
landscapes of the Land of Israel.
Paintings being sorted through
for the camp exhibition.
August 3 – 9, 2009
A Jewish Journey in Novosibirsk, RussiaAges: 11 – 13
Moses and the Israelites wandered in the desert for 40 years, but in Siberia's capital city of Novosibirsk, campers covered a lot of ground in just one week. Each day, campers focused on different topics primarily connected to Biblical themes. Campers were definitely on the road to self discovery in the unique setting of camp.
Day 1: Campers scouted out the territory and got to know one another.
Three campers view camp from above.
Campers learn to work together.
July 21 – 28, 2009
|Harry Potter Series Finds Its Way to Camp in Kishinev, Moldova|
Ages: 13 – 16
The Harry Potter series made a big splash in the camp in Kishinev as campers not only attended the camp but also the "Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry." In order to become a 'wizard' a camper needed to achieve a certain level of knowledge in Judaism.
Campers not only attended camp but also the Hogwarts School of
Witchcraft and Wizardry.
In this case, a wizard was a person, who knows a great deal, and is always striving to learn more, and to use knowledge for good purposes only. Read more...
August 2 - 9, 2009
My Interpretations of Jewish History from Biblical Times to Present in St. Petersburg, Russia
Ages: 11 – 13
Imagine walking through camp and meeting famous Jewish historical figures along the way. This is exactly the experience the campers had on their first Shabbat evening together. They participated in a station game where they "met" with Abraham, Sarah, Joseph, Judah Maccabee, Queen Esther, and other Jewish personalities. During the game, the campers were presented with personal stories and dilemmas each character had faced in the past. Working in small groups, the campers gave recommendations on how to best solve these dilemmas.
Campers act out Abraham and Sarah leaving for the Promised Land
Some of the dilemmas included whether or not Joseph should forgive his brothers, if Sarah should leave her mother country and follow Abraham to the Promised Land, and if Judah Maccabee should fight for the independence of his country. Through this activity, the campers came understand the major dilemmas of ancient Jewish history and they enjoyed giving advice and interacting with their historical characters. Read more...
July 20 - August, 2009
Havurah 2009 - A Grand Success
Havurah recently ended at Camp Tel Yehuda and it was a grand success. In her own words, Yelena Pogorelsky, the Havurah Program Manager, writes about the experiences of close to 100 Russian-speaking Jewish children who participated in this unique initiative designed by the Jewish Agency and the reasons why this program made such an impact. Read more…
August 11, 2009
Campers Celebrate Tel Aviv's Centennial in Minsk, Belarus
Ages: 11 – 14
Campers did not miss a beat this summer as they celebrated Tel Aviv's 100th Anniversary.
Centennial Opening Event in Tel Aviv, April 2009.
Campers in Minsk celebrate Tel Aviv's 100th Anniversary.
In honor of the first Hebrew City, the theme of the camp revolved around the history and culture of Tel Aviv. Campers were immersed in the life of the city from its establishment 100 years ago to the present day. They even created a 'Mini Tel Aviv' exhibit in their camp, building models of the first boulevards and streets, the first synagogue, and the Diaspora Museum. Read more...
July 19-26, 2009
The "Art-Midrasha " - Art Study Center Summer Camp in Kyiv (Kiev), Ukraine
The first session of the Jewish Agency summer camp in Kyiv this year was called the “Art-Midrasha”, an educational center aimed at developing Jewish arts and culture.
Evening seminar on society
The campers took part in the following areas: photography, motion pictures, theatre, music, movement, design, literature, and society. Read more...
July 20 – 29
"The Russians Are Camping!" Our Havurah Summer Camp In the News
The New York Jewish Week recently sent a reporter to spend a day at our Havurah summer camp in Upstate New York. Specially designed by the Jewish Agency for children of Russian-speaking Jews, whose parents left Russia and immigrated either to Israel or directly to America, these young adults stay closely tied to their Russian language and culture, and know little of the modern history of Russian Jewry or the specifics of their parents’ struggles. Activities focus on areas of Jewish education and identity, and building connections with Israel and the Jewish people, while its greatest emphasis is on people to people interaction. Read more...
August 5, 2009
Investigating Our Jewish Identity in
Spirits were soaring as campers teamed up to investigate their Jewish identity during this one week camp session.
As one camper tells it, "We divided into six different investigative agencies and explored questions relating to our own Jewish identity, our family histories, and the ways we view our connection to the Jewish people and Israel." Read more...
July 6-13 2009
Judaism, Israel, and Friendship in Dnepropetrovsk, Ukraine
Ages 13 -15
The camp opened on a high note featuring popular Israeli TV programs in Hebrew (with Russian subtitles). The campers enjoyed Israeli songs and dances and used their creativity to make up their own versions.
Meet Masha. A 14 year old first time participant in the Jewish Agency summer camp. Masha studies in a Jewish school and most of her classmates came to camp with her. "Even though I have been studying at a Jewish school for six years, I have learned so many new things in my first 3 days of camp. I now want to participate in the activities of the Jewish Agency, I want to join the Youth Clubs that have weekly events and I want to return to camp every summer".
July 9-16 2009
The Summer Jewish Creative Academy in Moscow, Russia
In this unique "academy style" summer camp, campers learned about Israel, Shabbat, Jewish traditions and holidays, Hebrew, Holocaust Memorial Day, and more.
| A young camper proudly displays his siddur. |
The children made their own prayer books which they individually designed, including the content, design and cover.
July 2-14 2009
About our Activities
For nearly two decades, our network of summer and winter camps in the former Soviet Union have reached tens of thousands of children, teens, university-age students and their families, connecting them to their heritage, Israel and the Jewish people. The week-long summer camps, which operate in over 14 cities and towns, immerse campers in a week of Jewish life, learning and culture.
About our Impact
Camp is a cultural lifeline for youth, especially in small peripheral cities and towns where it is often the only Jewish educational activity the entire year. It also encourages campers to further explore their heritage and become involved in youth clubs, Sunday schools, and Jewish holiday celebrations. Nearly 50% of campers return to camp and many become community leaders. Former campers are also prime candidates for short and long–term programs in Israel such as Taglit- Birthright Israel and MASA.
About our Partners
Camping in the FSU would not be possible without the critical partnership of:
Jewish Federation of Greater Atlanta
The Associated-Jewish Community Federation of Baltimore
International Commission on Holocaust Era Insurance Claims (ICHEIC)
International Fellowship of Christians and Jews
Jewish United Fund/Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago
Jewish Community Federation of Cleveland
Jewish Federation of Greater Dallas
Jewish Federation of Greater Hartford
Minneapolis Jewish Federation
UJA– Federation of New York
UJA– Federation of New York, Keshet Fund
Jewish Community Federation of Greater Rochester
Jewish Federation of Palm Beach County
Jewish Federation of South Palm Beach County
Jewish Federation of Pinellas and Pasco County
Minneapolis Jewish Federation
United Jewish Federation of Pittsburgh
Nathan T. Sedley Memorial Fund
Jewish Federation of Greater Middlesex County
Jewish Federation of St. Louis
Syracuse Jewish Federation
Jewish Federation of Greater Washington
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