Families Find Creativity at the "Home of Happiness"

Tags: Federation, Kids, Teens, Families, Here for Good News

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With the Mandel JCC’s popular children’s overnight and day camps canceled during summer 2020 to prevent the spread of COVID-19, support from the Jewish Federation of Cleveland was critical in allowing the Mandel JCC to provide alternative programming. JCC staff developed an exciting lineup of Camp Wise Outdoor Fun Day programs. These unique offerings provide families and groups an opportunity to experience the magic of Camp Wise – the Home of Happiness for generations of Greater Cleveland children – while social distancing in the great outdoors.

To date, 325 community members have participated in a total of 51 weekend and weekday programs! These six programs feature recreational activities across the expansive Geauga County camp grounds to keep families connected to their special summer place. Families hike the wooded trails, participate in waterfront recreation on the lake, enjoy an outdoor picnic, gather around the campfire for s’mores, celebrate the end of the week with a drive-in Shabbat, or engage in stewardship and service projects to support the camp facilities.

A Camp Wise family shared with Mandel JCC staff that they told their children they were going for a ride but did not tell them where they were headed. When they arrived at Camp Wise, their children were beyond excited to be back at their summer “home of happiness.” Another family shared that it was great to be with their kids at camp and see them in the place they love. Another testimonial to the value of this meaningful experience: “My daughter cried on the way home because she realized that she won’t be going back for a year.”

You make stories like this possible because of your support to the Jewish Federation of Cleveland's Campaign for Jewish Needs.

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