Martinsville, IN (January 14, 2019) – Communities nourish camps, and camps change lives. In an effort to strengthen community-camp bonds nationwide, American Camp Association (ACA)—a community of over 3,100 camps and over 12,000 camp professionals—has partnered with JCC Association of North America. Their aim is to fortify the health, safety, and risk management of JCC’s network of camps and facilitate all JCC Association-affiliated day and overnight camps achieving American Camp Association Accredited Camp® status by 2023.
As youth-serving organizations, ACA and JCC Association understand the value and importance of educational, developmental, and safe camp experiences. The ultimate objective of the partnership between ACA and JCC Association is to strengthen their collective work serving children, youth, and adults through positive, transformative camp experiences for all.
"Camp is one of the key entry points of families into JCC . . . and therefore its impact extends far beyond 7–10 weeks of summer camp," said Aaron Greenberg, vice president of camp engagement at JCC Association of North America. "When we help make our camps better, we strengthen the community as a whole—throughout the year and for many years. JCCs often engage their families on a year-round basis, using camp as the first point of entry. Becoming ACA-accredited demonstrates the excellence that each of our JCCs and camps continually strive for."
The partnership serves as public recognition that ACA-accredited JCC camp programs provide safer and higher-quality experiences. Eventually, the aim is for 100-percent ACA accreditation for JCC camp programs.
"For over 70 years the American Camp Association Accredited Camp® designation has been a parent’s only assurance in all 50 states that a camp meets the foundational standards for camps in the US," said Tom Rosenberg, ACA president/CEO.
Aside from the direct impact on ACA and JCC Association camps, the organizations also hope the partnership serves as a blueprint for other youth-serving organizations. The future goal is to encourage camp growth and alignment focused on ACA standards in support of health, safety, and risk management for the benefit of children, youth, and adults everywhere.
More information can be found on ACA's website.
About JCC Association of North America
JCC Association of North America leads and connects the JCC Movement, advancing and enriching North American Jewish life. With 1.5 million people walking through the doors of JCCs each week, the JCC Movement represents the largest platform of Jewish engagement on the continent. JCC Association is the convening organization of this powerful network, partnering with JCCs and camps to bring together the collective power and knowledge of the JCC Movement—which represents 6,000 full-time skilled professionals and more than 32,000 part-time seasonal staff—and supporting them as we enhance and strengthen Jewish life throughout North America together. Learn more at JCCA.org, or on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
About American Camp Association
The American Camp Association® (ACA) is a national organization with more than 12,000 individual members and 3,100 member camps. ACA is committed to collaborating with those who believe in quality camp and outdoor experiences for children, youth, and adults. ACA provides advocacy, evidence-based education, and professional development, and is the only independent national accrediting body for the organized camp experience. ACA accredits approximately 2,500 diverse camps nationally. Accreditation provides public evidence of a camp’s voluntary commitment to the health, safety, and overall well-being of both campers and staff. For more information, visit ACAcamps.org.
Photo courtesy of Camp Tawonga in Groveland, CA.