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Jewish Community Center

J Day Camps – Mission & Philosophy

J Day Camp Mission: Play. Connect. Grow.

The mission of the J Day Camps is to provide a fun, safe, and inclusive community for all campers and staff.  Through innovative programming, our expert staff promotes physical and emotional development and imparts universal Jewish values.  The J Day Camps’ enriching experience allows its participants to develop valuable skills, meaningful friendships, and lifelong memories. 

We have all the trappings of the best summer day camp around. We make sure to hit all of the features of a good day camp, including:

  • Making new friends in a diverse and inclusive environment.
  • The opportunity to improve skills, leading to improved self-esteem.
  • Exposure to good role models.
  • Learning to make decisions and act independently, and they are encouraged to be creative.

J Day Camps Philosophy

J Day Camps are operated for the maximum benefit of campers. While efforts are made to provide for the needs of our employees, CAMPERS COME FIRST.

Our philosophy is to teach campers new skills, not just teach new skills to campers. 

We believe J Day Camps should be fun! Fun at J Day Camps means:

  • A caring, nurturing, and safe environment
  • Engaging experiential learning about Jewish values, culture and history, as well as about the importance of the land of Israel to the Jewish people
  • The opportunity to make friends
  • A place for self-esteem enhancement
  • The chance to explore new interests
  • Age-appropriate programs
  • The opportunity to develop and improve skills
  • A structure where sportsmanship is emphasized
  • Appreciation for and promotion of diversity
  • Appreciation for nature and comfort in the outdoors
  • An outlet for creativity and talent
  • A place where young adults become positive role models and teachers for their campers

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What Do Our Campers Think?

  • 92% of our campers reported making a new friend at J Day Camps.*
  • 78% of our campers improved swim skills and 65% improved another skill.
  • 84% of our campers rated our staff as Excellent or Very Good.*
  • 33% of our counselors attended J Day Camps!
  • Campers in 3rd grade and older can choose from a variety of options to create their own schedule.
    *Results according to the 2021 J Camp Camps Survey for campers who attended 4+ weeks.

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Why Else Should You Choose J Day Camps?

  • Come early, have fun, and stay late: Our Before and After Care options allow you and your child to extend the length of their day to fit your schedules. Come for the core day (9-3) or, if you need/want more camp, we offer morning and afternoon programs.
  • Activities for every kid: We offer one camp at each location, but campers can customize their days with many activities and focuses from which to choose.
  • On-site swim program: All campers swim almost daily (lessons and free swim available)
  • Caring, well-trained, professional staff: Our staff is led by full-time, year-round camp professionals who guide and train our summer team through 30+ hours of training on how to “think like a parent, act like a friend.”
  • All are welcome: We encourage diversity – children of all backgrounds are welcome. Our kids and staff are diverse in every way imaginable, including personality, creativity, athletic ability, ethnicity, culture, developmental ability, gender, and religion. Our community allows your child to feel at ease and to learn more about other people in the world we all share.
  • Accredited by the American Camp Association (ACA): The American Camp Association, or ACA, is a community of camp professionals who have joined together to share knowledge and experience to ensure the quality of camp programs. Our camp is a proud member of, and accredited by, the American Camp Association. This means we maintain industry standards, are annually reviewed and are committed to providing a safe and nurturing camp community, focusing on campers.
  • Come for one week, multiple weeks, or all summer: With each session lasting one week, kids are able to spend as much of their summer with us as possible without interfering with other plans.

See Other Frequently Asked Questions

Questions? Here’s Who To Contact.

Mat DeWinters

Director of Sports, Recreation, and J Day Camps

Jess Bauer

Director of Youth Services, Chesterfield

Ashley Stockman

Director, Life Enrichment & Adult Day Services