Why Camp JCA Shalom?

Our Story

For almost 70 years, Camp JCA Shalom has been the “Camp for All Seasons,” providing thousands of campers and counselors with the adventures, friendships, and memories that last a lifetime. From our youngest campers, to our counselors-in-training, Camp JCA Shalom promises a fun-filled adventure that will have you coming back year after year.

In November 2018, the Woolsey Fire devastated the Shalom Institute’s gorgeous Malibu campus. Since then, we have continued to run camp at our temporary location in the Angeles National Forest. We are in the process of recovery and rebuild and hope to be in Malibu as soon as we can in facilities that change and evolve to meet the needs of our core values.

group of kids wearing blue and white climbing helmets outside.

Cabin Centered Camping

We believe that one of the best and most important parts of camp is building lifelong friendships so, with the exception of a few hours of the day, the cabin group is doing all of their activities together.  This cabin-centered approach is important because we believe that one of the best parts of camp is building lifelong friendships.

By the end of the session, the bunk will have had successes and challenges as a cabin, shared fun and hilarious moments, even extremely meaningful and inspirational moments too! This approach is one of the things that differentiates Camp JCA Shalom.  

group of teen girls sitting and smiling.

Safety

Providing a safe environment for your child is our top priority and we make every effort to ensure their emotional and physical wellbeing.  There is a team of onsite licensed medical professionals 24/7 to care for the daily needs of campers and we are fully prepared for any emergencies.  We are accredited by the American Camp Association and follow all national and local safety guidelines. 

group of kids wearing blue and white climbing helmets outside.

Counselors and Staff

Our amazing staff provide a warm and supportive environment so that campers can experience living, learning, and playing in a group setting that encourages personal growth and self-discovery. Staff must be both at least 17-years of age and high school graduates. All of our staff are carefully selected and trained by our senior leadership team. Before any campers arrive, all staff members participate in an on-site training that includes workshops led by our senior leadership, outside professionals, and industry experts. 

man on a nature field trip showing something to a group of kids.

Communication

Every year, Camp JCA Shalom is one of North America’s top-rated camps in “communication.” The camp director sends an email every day, along with daily photos that can be accessed by parents and family members for free!

man teaching something outside while sitting on a stone wall.

Disconnecting in Order to Connect

The best parts of camp are that campers can focus on the deep relationships that are built free from the distractions of the “outside world,” so camp is an unplugged zone! (Meaning that electronics with interactive screens are not allowed at camp.)

two teens painting a sign on the ground that says JCA with a star of david.

Radically Inclusive

Part of sending your camper to camp is giving them the gift of being surrounded by people from around the world, who have different backgrounds, different strengths and abilities, different religious backgrounds and practices, and different life experiences. Being part of this inclusive community allows kids to become more well-rounded, develop a greater sense of empathy, and be more compassionate.

group of teens in white singing together outside.

Focus on Nature, Environment, Sustainability

Camp JCA Shalom’s vision of Tikkun Olam – creating a better world – is fulfilled through a positive Jewish living experience in the natural setting while learning and living as sustainably as possible. Camp is eco-friendly in a number of ways including: reduction of paper use, green cleaning products, organic gardening & farming, environmental education, and more! 

kids gardening with a man in a headdress.

Camper Care

Our Care and Support Team (CAST) is dedicated to working with campers, counselors, parents, and staff to find ways for everyone to succeed at camp. Leaving the comfort of home and familiar routine is an adjustment for everyone. Our primary goal is to help ease that transition and to problem-solve when needed. The CAST understands that social, emotional (including homesickness), and behavioral challenges are inevitable at camp. Therefore, our aim is to approach/handle each unique situation with care, in turn allowing for difficult experiences to be opportunities for immense growth and learning.

camp counselors in blue shirts sitting and smiling on some steps.

Fun

Campers participate in a variety of programs and activities daily, make new and lasting friendships, and develop a wealth of new skills and interests. Kids experience activities like arts & crafts, swimming, sports, ropes course, gardening, dance, archery, and team building. All-camp programs include Color War, Israel Day, Shabbat, Israeli Dancing, beach trips, camping trips, and more! 

excited and surprised girl with her mouth open in front of a few other kids.

Great Food

We take pride in serving healthy and delicious food. Our carefully prepared menus are “kid-friendly” and varied. Every meal has a vegetarian meal option and our kitchen can accommodate many special dietary needs or restrictions. Camp JCA Shalom is a nut-free camp. 

plate of quick breads.

Jewish Values

Judaism at camp is designed to be fun, interesting, child-friendly, and has multiple entry points for campers with little or no Jewish background. Campers have a great opportunity to connect with their Judaism in a way that has meaning for them. 

group of teens in white leaning on each other and singing.
teens sitting in folding chairs outside watching a performance on a basketball court.

a positive Jewish living experience

Build lifelong meaningful relationships