Camp Newman Fire & Our Youth

Posted on Jan 3, 2018 in Rabbi's Messages

It has been known for some time that youth who attend Jewish overnight camp end up with stronger Jewish identities well into adulthood.  They are more likely to light candles for Shabbat and Hanukkah, have a connection to Israel, donate to charity, attend synagogue, and participate in Federation. Jewish camp is great for the future of Judaism.

For the Reform movement, the Union of Reform Judaism, hosts a number of excellent camps around the country.  At Temple Beth David, we have a special connection with Camp Newman in Northern California.  Thanks to the family of Rabbi Henry Front, may his memory be a blessing, there was a fund established with our Foundation to support our youth in attending this camp.  Seth Front, in particular, helped inspire our children to attend and we are grateful to him for that.

Personally, I have seen the excitement of our children and how they grow over the weeks at camp.  There is special pride in being Jewish within a nurturing environment that embraces Reform values and practices.  It has been an honor for me to serve on faculty these last few summers.   I can tell you that Camp Newman is an excellent place to send your children.

Many of you are sadly aware that the terrible fires in Northern California destroyed our precious camp.

This loss has impacted many at our synagogue and this is why our youth are coming together with our Sisterhood and Brotherhood to hold a fundraiser for Camp Newman.

On Saturday night, Jan. 20 starting at 6:30 p.m. all are invited to attend the Brotherhood/Sisterhood Paid up dinner where we will learn about Camp Newman and raise some funds to assist in its rebuilding.

We hope that you will join us.  I know your presence will mean a lot to our youth and their families.

Camp Newman will certainly be rebuilt and in the meantime we are meeting this upcoming summer at Cal State Maritime in the San Francisco bay area.  I don’t know how long it will take to rebuild but with your help and the love of our youth and adults, I have no doubt that we will have amazing summers once again at Camp Newman.

Rabbi Nancy Rita Myers