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BASIC INFO

What is Camp Tel Yehudah?

Young Judaea’s national teen leadership camp, Tel Yehudah, is an engaging and dynamic international Jewish teen community. Tel Yehudah offers summer programs for teens currently in 8th through 11th grades from all over North America. Israel, and around the world.

Where is Camp Tel Yehudah located?

We are located in Barryville, New York approximately two hours northwest of Manhattan, near the junction of New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Our 150 beautifully wooded acres along the Delaware River provides participants with the perfect opportunity to enjoy and connect with the beauty of nature and the outdoors.

What are the dates for camp this summer?

Please visit our Rates & Dates page.

How do I register for Camp Tel Yehudah?

Registration is completely online and can be accessed here.

What programs are offered at Tel Yehudah?

To learn more about our unique programs for different age groups, general camp structure, specialty areas and/or out of camp trips, visit the “Program” section. Our programs for each grade are:

Grade First Session Second Session Havurah
8th Alumim Kfir Kfir
9th Yachad Bonim Bonim
10th-11th Hadracha Hamamah Hamamah
What happens if I register for a Tel Yehudah program and then decide to switch to one of Young Judaea’s Israel Programs?

Your deposit with TY is able to be transferred to these programs with no loss.

What is Havurah?

Havurah is our unique program for teens that are in 8th-11th grades as of Fall 2015 from Russian-speaking Jewish families. Participation in Havurah is offered during second session only. Havurah is subsidized through generous grants.

How can I learn more about Camp Tel Yehudah?

Parents and teens can learn more about our programs, watch videos , and register all on our website. We strongly encourage new potential participants and their parents to view the website and call the Tel Yehudah office if they have any questions. Our videos are very helpful in learning more about camp and getting a taste of the TY experience. We are also happy to put you in contact with former participants and their parents to gain first hand perspectives.

How do I contact Camp Tel Yehudah?

We can be reached by phone at 800-970-CAMP (2267) or email at telyehudah@youngjudaea.org.

How can I interact with Tel Yehudah online?

We love being in touch with our TY family and friends all year long. We frequently post pictures, provide updates about camp and share interesting tidbits about all sorts of other things we care about through our various online media channels. As an added bonus, we provide special incentives and opportunities to win prizes exclusively online! So, make sure to follow us on Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and like us on Facebook to stay in the know about everything happening at TY.

What is camp’s address?

Our winter address (September 1st through May 31st) is 575 8th Ave 11th Floor, New York NY 10018. Our summer address (June 1st through August 31st) is PO Box 69, Barryville, NY 12719.

 

PARTICIPANT LIFE & EXPERIENCE

What does a typical day look like at Tel Yehudah?

Every day campers participate in a mix of activities including a wide variety of specialty areas, group activities exploring program themes, personal choice electives, Jewish ritual, exciting evening and nightly bunk activities, and much more. You can view our daily schedule to see a typical day at camp.

Does the program have any free time?

Every day at camp is filled with a wide variety of activities. However, we do believe it is important for our teens to have some free time each day to spend with their friends. On most days, campers have approximately two hours of free time with additional time on Shabbat. During all free time periods, our specialty areas offer additional opportunities for campers to participate in activities they already love and explore new ones. During any free time period, you might see campers taking a dip in the pool, going for a run, playing soccer, taking a climb up the wall or playing guitar with some friends among many other activities.

Are there times when everyone in camp is together?

Yes. About half of our meals are held together in the larger dining hall on our Aleph campus. Shabbat is the most communal experience in camp, bringing the entire community together for an amazing Jewish experience. Some evening and special programs invite the entire community to participate in them together.

How much personal choice is there in the program?

We strike a balance between community building experiences and opportunities for personal choice. Every day there is a daily elective program, frequent bunk choice programs and a wide variety of activities offered during camper free time. Yachad and Bonim campers have an opportunity to choose an Intensive Program Track. Hadracha campers choose a Tikun group focusing on a pressing local or international issue. Hamamah campers choose a focus area for their week two Special Interest Clinics to help them learn and develop leadership skills related to targeted subjects.

What types of trips will my teen go on this summer?

Out of camp immersive experiences are vital features of the Tel Yehudah program and provide campers with diverse and challenging enrichment. All campers participate in extended multi-day trips ranging from community service to backcountry hiking to exploring New York City and more! Read more about each program to learn more about the specific associated trips.

How do Yachad campers select trips?

The five Yachad Intensive Program Tracks (Intensives) provide an opportunity for teens to focus on specific topic areas. The central feature of each Intensive is an immersive, four-day, out-of-camp experience such as backpacking, biking, kayaking, photo expedition, and volunteering in New York City. An online form will become available to families in early spring with full descriptions about each Intensive, associated trips, and an opportunity to rank preferences. Teens will be assigned to their Intensives approximately one month prior to the start of the session. (Please note that trips are subject to change and certain trips have an additional associated $100 fee.)

How do Bonim campers select trips?

An online form will become available to families of Bonim campers in early spring with full descriptions of the available trips, such as backpacking, kayaking, and volunteering, and an opportunity to rank preferences. Teens will be assigned to their trips approximately one month prior to the start of the session. (Please note that trips are subject to change and certain trips have an additional associated $100 fee.)

My teen has never attended a Young Judaea camp before. Is this a problem?

Not at all. Tel Yehudah is a international summer program. Our participants come from all over the country and world. Young Judaea has four regional camps for younger participants. As a result, while many of our participants have grown up at Young Judaea camps, everyone who comes to Tel Yehudah is meeting many of the other participants for the first time. For many participants the experience of meeting new people from all over the country and the world is one of the best parts of camp. North American participants who have not previously attended any Jewish residential camp may be eligible for a special $1000 incentive grant. Please contact our office for more information.

How will my teen feel welcomed and included?

Our staff develops programs that bond participants together and facilitate opportunities to interact and create new friendships. One of Tel Yehudah’s core values is pluralism and we ensure that there is a place for each and every camper in our community.

How do you create a sense of community outside the cabin?

While relationships amongst bunkmates are crucial, our program allows teens to participate within various groupings, depending on the activity. Evening programs are creative, highly interactive and bring together larger groups of our teens. Regardless of the makeup or size of the group, our staff members pride themselves on fostering community and connecting teens together throughout each moment of the day.

How do you teach my teen new skills and help him/her develop?

Our staff and programs create a supportive and empowering environment for building skills, taking challenges and broadening horizons. Our wide variety of specialty areas allows campers to enjoy daily athletic, creative, aquatic, group building, personal challenge and environmental experiences. All of our activities are led by trained staff and strike a balance between skill development and personal enjoyment. Our daily elective program provides the opportunity for teens to customize their own experience and build up their own specific abilities and competencies.

What does it mean to be a Zionist camp?

Our teens develop a deep and individual sense of connection to Israel and Zionism, through exploration of the ideals, realities and challenges of the Jewish state. Participants enjoy a flavor of Israel throughout the entire experience – deeply engaging with and exploring Israel’s culture, history, people, food and more. Tel Yehudah is proud to have a strong delegation of Israeli staff each summer, who help participants create a personal relationship to a multi-faceted Israel. Through our partnership with Camp Kimama in Israel, our second session, Global Teen Community, includes dozens of Israeli teens at Tel Yehudah.

What does it mean to be a leadership and activism camp?

Throughout all of our programs, our teens develop a deep commitment to social responsibility and social change, along with the necessary leadership and activism tools and skills. Along with learning about activism and leadership, all of our teens take on authentic leadership roles within camp to plan and lead activities for their own peers.

Our rising 11th-12th graders have the unique opportunity to participate in two intensive, leadership and activism experiences that are truly the culmination of the TY experience.

  • Our Hadracha: Social Activism Institute, held during first session, allows teens to build their passion and skills for activism, while also having a lot of fun. During their four-day trip to Washington, D.C. participants gain insider access to government and congressional leaders to advocate for important issues confronting society and enlist their support to affect change in our world and they learn from leading advocacy organizations and experts in the field on many of the most important topics of our time. Hadracha participants also strengthen skills to be community leaders, increase understanding of political process and civic engagement, and become change agents to better our world.
  • Our new Hamamah: Leadership Development Institute, held during second session, brings together a truly Jewish teens from around the world interested in developing their own leadership skills, including Young Judaea regional camp graduates, teens from the UK through our partnership with FZY (Federation of Zionist Youth), Camp Kimama in Israel, and more. Hamamah participants are ready to become the next generation of global Jewish teen leaders through a mix of general and specialized leadership training workshops, seminars with successful leaders and experts in their fields, practical, hands-on experiences, mentor opportunities, and in-camp internships. In addition, successful Hamamah graduates will be eligible to earn up a $250 salary bonus to work at Young Judaea (and select other) camps in a future summer.
How do you build Jewish identity at Tel Yehudah?

Campers discover different ways they can connect to Judaism, regardless of their background, and build their own unique Jewish identity. Teens explore Jewish life through multiple lenses, trying out traditional and alternative Jewish rituals and expressions, for an innovative and immersive Jewish experience. Teens develop a sense of connection and responsibility for the larger Jewish community.

Can I visit my teen during the summer?

Camp Tel Yehudah does not offer visiting days but there are opportunities to drop teens off at the beginning of the summer or pick them up at the end. We look forward to meeting you then and showing you camp.

 

OUR TEENS

How many campers are there at TY each summer?

We enroll up to 400 teens per session, with a fairly equal division between males and females. We have approximately 150 summer staff members that support this number of participants, most of whom live in bunk with our teens.

What is the participant age and gender breakdown?

We are a residential co-educational camp for teens entering 9th-12th grades

From where do Tel Yehudah’s participants come?

Each summer, we form a unique community of the most diverse group of young Jews from around the country and world who bring a variety of Jewish backgrounds, perspectives and practices. Our teens come from all across North America as well as from Israel, the UK, Europe, Latin America and everywhere in between.

OUR STAFF

From where and how do you select your staff?

Tel Yehudah hires the highest-caliber, talented, passionate staff to build and lead our programs each summer. Our staff serves as exceptional role models and mentors to our teen participants. Staff applicants complete a detailed application, participate in a thorough interview aimed at assessing their strengths, weaknesses, and commitment to our program’s aims, and undergo a professional background check. An extremely high percentage of our North American staff are graduates of Young Judaea programs, which means they have benefited from participation in our programs and have a strong desire to give back to the next generation. Each summer we bring a delegation of staff members from Israel that allows our teens to create a truly personal relationship to a multi-faceted Israel. We also bring an increasing number of staff members from the UK through our partnership with the Federation of Zionist Youth as well as from Argentina, Russia and other countries in Europe.

What type of training does your staff receive?

Our staff are required participate in a thorough and intensive orientation prior to the start of each season that includes specific training in emergency procedures, adolescent behavior and management, communication, supervision procedures, leadership skills, program writing and preparation, and more. We also provide ongoing staff development and in-service training throughout the summer. Almost all of the members of our leadership team are CPR/AED certified. Many of our specialty area leaders (ex. challenge course leaders, lifeguards, outdoor staff, etc.) are required to participate in area-specific training and/or obtain special certification prior to assuming their roles each summer. All staff are evaluated and provided with feedback throughout the summer to continuously improve their performance.

What is the staff to camper ratio?

1:3. This ratio not only meets, but exceeds the required ratio set by the American Camp Association of 1:10 for programs with teenage participants.

 

TUITION AND FINANCIAL CONCERNS

What are the tuition costs for this summer?

Please visit our Rates & Dates page.

Does TY offer any tuition discounts?

Yes. They are listed below. Please note there is no built-in discount for international participants.

  • Early Bird Discount: Register by October 20, 2016
  • First Session: $4,4750 • Second Session: $3950 • Full Summer: $7,300
  • Sibling Discount: $200 discount for each additional sibling registered to attend TY in 2017
  • Refer-a-Camper: $250 discount for each new camper* recruited to attend TY in 2017 (Recruited campers must have not previously attended any Young Judaea summer camp.)
  • Full Summer Discount: $1,400 discount for any teen registered for first and second session.
Is the cost of travel to camp included in the tuition?

No. Each participant is responsible for making his/her own travel arrangements Tel Yehudah offers limited needs-based assistance to families in North America to help alleviate the costs of tuition and travel to camp. Any family seeking assistance for travel costs must first complete the Young Judaea Tuition Assistance application. Please note: participants must first be registered with Tel Yehudah in order to be eligible to apply for Young Judaea assistance.

*Travel assistance will only apply to out-of-pocket fees. Funds cannot be considered for tickets purchased with frequent flyer miles/points. Ground travel, buses, car services or taxis to/from the airport will not be considered eligible for financial assistance for travel. Tel Yehudah can only consider travel to/from your home and Camp Tel Yehudah within reasonable dates of the camp session(s) for financial assistance eligibility.

When I complete registration for the summer, do I also have to submit payment?

Yes. Families must submit a $500 deposit in order to secure their camper(s) spot for summer 2016. Credit cards will be accepted for immediate payment during the online registration process. Checks may also be submitted and should be mailed to: Camp Tel Yehudah, 575 8th Ave 11thFloor, New York, NY 10018. Participants will not be officially enrolled until a deposit payment has been received.

Do I have to pay the full tuition upon registering for camp?

No. We have four different payment plan options:

  • Option 1 – Payment in full, via credit card or check
  • Option 2 – Payment by check of half the balance by January 1, 2017 and the balance by May 1, 2017.
  • Option 3 – Payment by automatic charge of the parent’s credit card on January 1, 2017 for half of the balance and May 1, 2017 for the remaining balance.
  • Option 4 – Payment by monthly installments via automatic charges to credit card in equal installments each month from the date of registration through May 1, 2017
What is the refund policy?

A full refund of the deposit, less a $100 processing fee for one-session participants or a $200 processing fee for two-session participants, is available for cancellations received by Camp Tel Yehudah by March 1, 2017. All cancellations must be received by Camp Tel Yehudah in writing. All deposits will be forfeited after March 1, 2017. Fifty percent of the tuition paid will be refunded for registrations cancelled after May 1, 2017. No tuition refunds will be made for registrations cancelled after June 1, 2017 for first session participants or July 1, 2017 for second session participants. Further, no refunds will be given after the start of the camp session. If the participant’s balance is not paid in full by May 1, 2017, the teen’s enrollment is subject to cancellation and cancellation penalties shall apply.

What if I cannot afford to send my teen to Tel Yehudah?

Limited tuition assistance is available through the Hadassah and Tel Yehudah tuition assistance programs. Additional aid may be available through the local Jewish Federation, JCC or synagogue. It is advisable to apply for financial assistance as early as possible.

How do I apply for tuition assistance?

Hadassah, the Women’s Zionist Organization of America, and Tel Yehudah both offer limited, need-based camp tuition assistance through a single application. Only registered participants are eligible for consideration. The online application will be available in the fall. For more information about tuition assistance requirements contact us at our office at 917-595-1900 or by email at telyehudah@youngjudaea.org. Please note that to be eligible for assistance from Hadassah, a camper’s mother must be a paid member of Hadassah. We encourage all families in need of assistance to consider this $36 annual membership to our partner, Hadassah.

How do I submit a deposit or make payments if I am applying for tuition assistance?

All registrations must be accompanied by a $500 deposit in order to secure a camper(s) spot for summer 2017, including those applying for tuition assistance. For payment toward the camp balance, we suggest families choose a monthly payment plan, in order to submit smaller payments throughout the year. If this is not possible, select the payment by check option so you can submit your payment at a later date. For concerns about any of the existing payment plans, contact our office directly to discuss other financial options at 917-595-1900.

 

OUR FACILITIES

What do the camp and the cabins look like?

Tel Yehudah is divided into two side-by-side campuses, Aleph and Bet. The cabin areas in each campus are separated by gender on opposite sides of one another. The cabins in Aleph accommodate 12-18 participants and 2-3 bunk staff members. There is a female and male shower house on each side respectively. In Bet, the cabins accommodate up to 14 participants and 2 bunk staff members, and each cabin is equipped with 2 showers in the cabin. All cabins are wooden and are maintained and inspected throughout the year for safety.

What sort of facilities does your camp offer?

Besides camp cabins and dining halls, our facility includes basketball and volleyball courts, a state-of-the-art aquatic center, sports fields, art and ceramic studios, theaters, a dance pavilion and both high and low challenge courses. We also have our own overnight campsite for teens to enjoy immersive, outdoor camping experiences right on our own property. Tel Yehudah is located directly on the banks of the Delaware River and there are opportunities for certain age groups to go rafting or kayaking on the river.

Is your camp accredited?

Yes, it is ACA (American Camp Association) accredited, which means Tel Yehudah upholds the highest levels of professionalism and standards in safety, sanitation, health care, personnel management, and physical facility operations in the camping industry. Tel Yehudah is also under the supervision of the New York State Health Department and undergoes an annual inspection.

 

HEALTH, WELLNESS AND SAFETY

What kind of supervision will my child have at camp?

Participants are under the supervision of our staff members at all times. We have a staff-to-camper ratio of 1:3, which allows our staff to be present in all areas of camp where our teens are participating in programs. During free time, a rotation of staff is assigned to specific posts around our campus, so the teens are always within the eye line and earshot of staff.

What if my child misses home?

Home sickness is common, even among teens. Generally speaking many participants get home sick for the first few days. The staff makes sure to build positive bunk dynamics and facilitates many games and fun activities for participants to get to know each other and get comfortable in their new environment. Most participants get used to camp and make new friends within a couple of day. If there is an extreme case of homesickness we inform the parents and deal with it on a case by case basis.

Who makes sure my teen keeps him/herself and his/her stuff clean?

Each day, except for Saturday, participants and staff clean their bunks and bunk areas to ensure cleanliness. Senior staff inspects bunks throughout the week as well to make sure that bunks are being kept clean. Laundry is done twice during the session. It is outsourced and is washed and folded for each teen. This service is included in the tuition cost.

What is the food like at camp?

We serve three nutritious and kosher meals each day. Only kosher food is allowed to be brought into camp (including cabins). We also have a salad bar at all of our meals to ensure that participants have fresh vegetables available. Fruit is also available throughout the day for snacks.

Do you make provisions for special diets?

We do our best to accommodate special dietary needs. We serve vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, and lactose-free options at each meal. Please feel free to contact us to discuss your teen’s specific dietary needs.

Is there a hospital near Tel Yehudah?

There is at least one nurse on-call 24/7. In case of emergency there is a hospital 30 minutes away.

What about off-site safety on trips?

On every trip, a member of the trip staff who is charged with carrying a complete medical kit and a copy of each participants’ medical history and emergency contact information. Each trip’s designated medical provider sits down for a thorough review of all participant medical and health needs with a member of our Health Care staff prior to departure. On all outdoor adventure trips (backpacking, biking, kayaking, and camping), one of the trip leaders must be Wilderness First Aid certified. On all trips that may include water exposure, a certified lifeguard must accompany the group.

How can I get in touch with my teen and his/her counselor?

Parents may send messages to their teens via hand-written letters and/or through email. Information about our CampInTouch email service will be sent to all registered families before the summer. We do not allow the use of cell phones or internet at camp. To be in touch with a staff member, you may call the summer office and there will be someone who will help answer any concerns or questions you have. You can also email telyehudah@youngjudaea.org and someone will return your message.

 

TRAVELING TO TEL YEHUDAH

How can my teen get to Tel Yehudah?

There are three ways teens generally get to camp: car, bus and plane. Parents may drop their teens off at camp on opening day and pick them up on closing day. This is a good opportunity for parents to see camp and meet our staff. Tel Yehudah also runs buses on opening and closing day from Newark Liberty Airport for campers in the tri-state area as well as for those flying into Newark.

If my teen is flying to camp, what information do I need to make a reservation?

All flights must be scheduled to arrive into Newark Liberty Airport (EWR) between 12:00pm and 3:00pm on the first day of the session. Our staff will meet campers as they arrive at the airport and will transport campers and luggage to camp via chartered bus. For departure, all flights must be scheduled to depart from Newark Liberty Airport (EWR) between 2:00pm and 5:00pm on the last day of the session. No camper should depart before 2:00pm. Buses will take campers from camp to Newark Liberty Airport. Our staff will assist campers with checking in luggage and getting to their departure gates (as much as Airport Security will permit). Staff will remain at the airport until all flights have departed.

What if my teen must fly as an unaccompanied minor?

Please notify Camp Tel Yehudah if your child will be traveling as an officially designated “unaccompanied minor” with your airline. We will provide you with the identifying information of the person who will be greeting your child at the gate. This information will be required by the airline. It is the responsibility of the parent to arrange payment of the “unaccompanied minor” fee directly with the airline for both arrival and departure.