As we prepare for 2021 we want to make sure you can stay up to date with all the information we will be sending out. This page can serve as a hub for you to easily access important emails, links to, and recaps of, future town halls or parlor meetings, frequently asked questions, and more.
Look below for 2021/COVID-19 specific information or click here for our general camp FAQ
We know that the world is in a constant state of change with new information unfolding almost daily. Amidst this unpredictability, we have crafted a simple philosophy to guide us and provide stability in planning and decision making for next summer. Our three pillars are:
Safety - Safety first, Ruach second. Safety is our guiding principle, followed closely by all the elements that make up our camp’s ruach (spirit). Keeping our chanichim (campers) and tzevet (staff) healthy and protected will guide us in making decisions for what we can and can’t do, and how we may need to adjust along the way. We will continue to work with our medical committee, our COVID-19 task force, and local and state governments to help guide our planning.
Essence - Our focus this summer is to GET KIDS TO CAMP - in one space, away from technology, and playing together. We won’t compromise our wonderful education and programming, but our primary focus and goal will be to maintain the ESSENCE of camp and togetherness.
Togetherness - We are stronger together. We are committed to keeping our community connected and keeping the spirit of Ramah alive. As we have done since March, we are thinking about how to give meaning to our families, campers, and staff during these difficult times, in a Ramah way.
If space remains, you can enroll now and rest assured that you have until March 8th, 2021 to withdraw or make changes without any penalty. As outlined in the Terms & Conditions section of our online application:
After March 8th, there is a $100 session change fee unless going from 2 weeks to 4 weeks.
There is an $800 cancellation fee from 3/9/2021 to 5/1/2021.
There are no refunds after 5/1/2021.
(as of 1/28/2021)
You should enroll your child based on the grade level they will enter in the fall of 2021. Our creative and talented camp staff are already working on ways to give campers a taste of special rituals and activities they may have missed last summer. However, our focus will be on having all of our Ramahniks continue on their journey by moving ahead according to their current grade. The chart below indicates the names of each edah (unit) based on grade level. Please note that Gesher is a 2-week program. All other programs are for 4 weeks.
|Gesher Aleph & Gimmel - 3rd/4th ||Sollelim - rising 8th grade
|Nitzanim - rising 4th/5th grade||Tzophim - rising 9th grade
|Giborei* - rising 6th grade||Kochavim - rising 10th grade
|Adat Shalom - rising 7th grade||Machon - rising 11th grade
|Amitzim - multiple grades, for campers with disabilities||Ezra - vocational program for young adults with disabilities
* For summer 2021 there will be a 2-week option for Nitzanim and Giborei age campers.
In place of offering 2-week sessions throughout the summer, we have limited our two-week sessions to the first two weeks of 1st session and the first two weeks of 2nd session. This change allows us to maintain a closed campus.
We are also offering a 2-week Nitzanim program this kayitz just for rising 5th graders and a 2-week Giborei Yisrael option for rising 6th graders who lost their Gesher experience as a result of the cancellation of Kayitz (summer) 2020.
We’re so excited to have you join us for Kayitz (Summer) 2021! If space remains, you can start the enrollment process here: http://www.ramah.org/enroll
In the event that we cannot safely operate our summer programming in 2021 and Ramah cancels prior to the beginning of summer sessions, families will be eligible for a full refund.
Should a family choose to cancel enrollment, refunds would be subject to our regular cancellation policy that can be found in the Terms & Conditions section of our online application.
Families will need to reapply for financial aid. We evaluate each year independently and we want to provide as much support as possible given any current situation your family may be facing.
More information is available on our Financial Assistance page.
While first-year campers are still eligible for the One Happy Camper grant, the application will not roll over and thus you will need to complete the form again. Information and the application can be found here: https://jewishcamp.org/one-happy-camper/
In addition to freezing our tuition at the 2020 level, we are offering a sibling discount of:
• $75 for your second child
• $100 for your third child
• $125 for your fourth child
Some campers might be eligible for our new Masah Incentive Grants. The Masah initiative provides a subsidy to Tzophim, Kochavim, and Machon (rising 9th-11th grade) campers, as well as 14-16-year-old Amitzim campers. This incentive is separate from our financial aid process; thus, it can provide support to a much broader range of our community. For more information please visit www.ramah.org/masah
Summer 2021 Plans
We anticipate that the camp will be a mostly closed campus. Our staff will likely arrive early to quarantine and outside visitors will likely not be permitted.
During camp, we expect campers will be placed in small groups, or pods, within their edah (unit). We assume that there may be a chance to relax these restrictions to some extent towards the later part of the sessions, however, we haven’t determined those benchmarks yet.
Both masks and social distancing will play a role at camp this summer. Chanichim (campers) will likely not need to mask when they are in their bunks or tents, but chanichim (campers) and tzevet (staff) will need to wear masks when moving throughout camp.
Prior to arrival at camp, chanichin (campers) and tzevet (staff) will likely be required to get COVID-19 tested. We are also considering requesting a quarantine period for campers before their session begins.
In addition to pre-camp COVID-19 testing, we anticipate screening tests every few days throughout the first weeks of camp while we are establishing our camp community. We will also likely use a combination of daily symptom screening and periodic testing throughout the session to ensure that our camp remains safe.
In place of offering 2-week sessions throughout the summer, we have limited our two-week sessions to the first two weeks of 1st session and the first two weeks of 2nd session. This change allows us to maintain camp as a closed community.
We are continuing to review if we will need to make additional adjustments to the summer calendar or to change specific session dates to ensure that our staff and campers have the safest experiences.
At this time, we know that the likelihood of a COVID-19 vaccine being available for children prior to summer is low. We will continue to monitor the availability of vaccines for our staff and campers 16 years old and older. We are highly recommending that those who are eligible receive the vaccine when it is available.
If you are within driving distance, it is possible that you may be asked to drive your camper to Ojai. For those families who live further, we are monitoring guidelines and recommendations and will update you with plenty of time to plan your transportation options.
Considerations for summer 2021 include:
We are adding extra hand sanitizing stations around the camp.
We are installing additional shade structures all around the camp in order to make outdoor programming more comfortable for our chanichim (campers) and tzevet (staff).
We are planning more thorough and more frequent cleaning of camp spaces.
We anticipate that regular health screenings and intermittent testing will be a part of our summer health protocols.
Like most summers, so much of our programming will take place outdoors - this year that may include meals as well.
To accommodate smaller sized groups, our daily schedule and regular programming will likely be modified.
It’s possible that either due to safety concerns or because of state or county mandate, we might need to have a smaller number of chanichim (campers) and tzevet (staff) on-site at any given time. If this is the case, we will likely need to close enrollment earlier than in the past. Different edot (units) could close at different times depending on enrollment and some of our edot (units) are nearing capacity already.
If we are forced to reduce capacity, spaces will be offered by date of application within each/edah (unit)
As of now, we do not have plans to host an in-person Yom Kehillah (visitors day) as we have in the past.
We are updating our practices and facilities to safely provide both routine medical care and any necessary COVID-19 screening and COVID-19 care. We will establish multiple locations in which medical staff will examine campers for non-COVID-19 related needs separate from where campers or staff with COVID-19-like symptoms are examined.
Camp Readiness & Mental Health
Camp readiness is an important consideration in any summer and we know you may be wondering whether your child is ready for a first experience, or ready to make the shift from two to four weeks away. We know we currently can’t rely on practice sleep-overs or overnight school trips as indicators. However, there are many ways to assess how your child might adjust to a camp setting based on current information. Please reach out to Dr. Aviva Levine Jacobs
, our Director of Camper Care & Staff Wellness, to arrange to speak about how to make the best determination for your child for Kayitz (summer) 2021.
Each summer, our staff prepare to acclimate first-time campers to the experience of being away from home and to support kids in making new friends and in leaving behind the digital world. They guide children and teens in their efforts to try out new skills as they stretch beyond their comfort zone. While we know that our campers have experienced disruption to their lives in countless ways, we are confident that the camp setting remains a place where kids can relax and have fun, connect with friends, explore Judaism, and feel a sense of belonging. We have an exceptional team of camper care professionals who will continue the work of meeting campers where they are at and partnering with parents to support a successful session at camp.
If your questions weren’t answered here, please send us an email, and we will be happy to answer any further questions you might have.
Important Emails & Information
Why should I enroll early for 2021 (Email)
Our Enrollment Town Hall (Video) (Password: Enrollment2020)
Enrollment is Open! (Email)
Thanks for helping us raise $1,000,000! (Video)
Introducing the Masah Incentive Grant (Email)
Our Fall Philosophy (Email)
Who to Call at Camp? (Email)
Cancellation Deadline Extension (Email)
Plans For A Safe Summer (Covid Information) (Email)
Revised Camp Dates & Transportation Guidelines (Email)