Foundation for Jewish Camp receives $10m grant for Specialty Camps Incubator III

FreeSwim_CMYKThe Foundation for Jewish Camp (FJC) is pleased to announce the Specialty Camps Incubator III, made possible by a grant of $10 million from the Jim Joseph Foundation. Building on the success of Incubator I and II, Incubator III will create four new Jewish specialty camps in a continuing effort to achieve the joint vision of the Jim Joseph Foundation and the Foundation for Jewish Camp: to increase experiential Jewish learning, strengthen Jewish continuity, and foster strong Jewish social networks among Jewish children and teens.

Specialty Camps Incubator offers a forum to pilot new educational models by integrating Jewish learning with activities that kids are passionate about – the environment, performing arts, sports, and outdoor adventure. The Incubator also successfully establishes new sustainable business models for Jewish camps by not requiring burdensome capital investment since the camps are required to rent existing properties.

Incubator III will launch four new Jewish specialty camps, provide funding to the new camps during their planning, start-up and first three years of operation, and evaluate the progress of each camp’s development. Each new camp will receive start-up investment and operational funding for three years of up to $1.4 million, pegged to performance goals.

The first two Specialty Camps Incubators, funded initially by the Jim Joseph Foundation and then later joined by The AVI CHAI Foundation, were modeled on a business incubator, formed to accelerate the launch of entrepreneurial ventures. The camps launched through Incubator I and II have already served more than 5,000 unique campers in six years.

FJC expects these four new specialty camps will serve annually, in aggregate, 1,200 campers and 160 college-aged counselors by the conclusion of the grant period (December 2020, after three summers). The experienced Incubator team will provide expert training and mentoring to support the Specialty Camp Incubator III cohort as they plan and implement their vision for new models of Jewish specialty camps.

Proposals for the four new specialty camps are now being accepted; see the RFP here.