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About the Jewish Summer Camp Initiaitive

The IAUJC’s Jewish camp grant initiative supports young people in attending Jewish overnight camps and teen summer experiences, in order to strengthen their identities, learn new skills, and build friendships that may last a lifetime. We seek also to strengthen the Jewish community in the process.

Our immediate goal is to encourage local young people to partake in Jewish summer programs and to ensure that every child in the Ithaca area who would like to attend a Jewish overnight camp or teen summer experience is able to do so.

IAUJC, an all-volunteer organization, raises funds from members of the Ithaca Jewish community, and makes the funds available to assist families who wish to send their child/ren to non-profit Jewish overnight camp or teen summer experiences. This support is available to either a first-time camper or a repeat camper who demonstrates financial need. We are interested in supporting young people ages 6 to 18, and particularly, but not limited to, those with special needs and/or teens between the ages of 13 and 18.

Financial awards will be made, from a program budget determined annually by the IAUJC’s Board, to each qualified applicant demonstrating need according to their application, and when confirmed by their camp. Additional funds may be available for those with ‘significant’ or “very high” financial need, as determined by the camp in collaboration with the IAUJC.


We understand that Jewish overnight camp is expensive. Don't automatically assume your income doesn't qualify your family. We want to ensure every Jewish child has the opportunity to experience the magic of Jewish camp. We understand these conversations may be difficult to start. Let us reassure you that the benefits of Jewish camp for your child and family will far outweigh any initial discomfort.

Campers who identify as Jewish, are between the ages of 6 to 18, and reside in Tompkins County and demonstrate need may be eligible for Awards. Prospective campers with financial need living in Cortland, Tioga, or Southern Cayuga Counties should inquire with the Campership Awards Chair - Vally at 607-257-5181.

1.       Campers must be registered for a Jewish overnight camp or teen experience. Find one  on the Foundation for Jewish Camp’s website:

2.       First time campers must apply for assistance from the One Happy Camper grant program. $1,000 is offered as an encouragement to any child who identifies as a Jew looking for the first time to attend a non-profit Jewish camp for at least 2 weeks.  OHC’s grants are not based on need, but the funds are limited and this application should be sent as soon as possible.

3.       This application for assistance must be completed, signed, and submitted by the deadlines indicated.

4.       Need-based eligibility will be evaluated by the participating camp and their recommendation will be presented to the IAUJC for its consideration.

5.       An application and signed letter of agreement between IAUJC and the Parents/Guardians will be required before the release of any need-based grant funds are made to the camp/teen experience program.

The deadline for submission of all application information for the IAUJC grant program is the last day of each month from November through March. As IAUJC Award funds are limited, early application is encouraged. Awards will be in the form of a payment made directly to the camp.


Email:   OR   Call Vally at:  607-257-5181
OR Write: Jewish Camp and Teen Summer Experience Award Committee
Ithaca Area United Jewish Community, PO Box 4214, Ithaca, New York 14852