Frequently Asked Questions

Does Camp Alonim require campers to be vaccinated against COVID-19?

We consider the physical and emotional health and safety of our community a top priority. We believe COVID-19 vaccines are a valuable tool in our strategy to decrease the risk of preventable illnesses at camp, and we are grateful to our community that supported this vaccination requirement in Summer 2022 and to our new families that enrolled for Summer 2023 with this requirement in place. After much consideration, and in consultation with our Medical Committee and the leadership of American Jewish University, Camp Alonim has decided that the primary COVID-19 vaccination will no longer be required for camper participation during Summer 2023, nor will any updated boosters be required for campers that are already vaccinated. We do strongly recommend that all campers are fully vaccinated and up to date against COVID-19 (including any available boosters if eligible).

What kind of health screening will be in place?

The safety of our campers and staff is of paramount importance to the Alonim experience. We intend to follow all regulations and recommendations put forth by Ventura County Health Department, CDC, and the American Camp Association.

Health screening will begin before coming to camp with a daily symptom screening to be conducted at home. Upon arrival to camp, campers will undergo a health check including a temperature check, symptom check, and COVID-19 Specific screening questions. Counselors will also conduct short daily health check-ins each morning during the camp session. COVID-19 testing may be required ahead of your child’s arrival and/or on Opening Day of camp.

How many campers are in a bunk? How many counselors? Do any of the bunks have exterior restrooms?

Most campers entering grades 2-9 are housed in bunks with approximately 12 campers and 2-3 counselors. Some boys in grade 6th and up may be housed in bunks with exterior restrooms, and the bunks used by 10th grade girls, as well as those used by 11th graders have exterior restrooms.

Is it really hot at camp? Is there air conditioning?

At the peak of summer, daytime temperatures average in the 80s and 90s. Temperatures drop significantly at night (60s), so bunks are not air-conditioned but do have ceiling fans and/or vents. Most program buildings used for activities during the day have air-conditioning.

Does “all white” clothing on Shabbat really mean white?

Yes. All campers and staff are required to wear pure white clothing on Shabbat. (Shoes and belts, however, need not be white.) Colored shirts worn underneath white shirts are not appropriate for Shabbat. Please see the “Packing List” on your Alonim Account for further information, including suggestions for locating white clothing.

What happens if my child has a birthday at camp?

We celebrate! There will be a cake and the singing of “Yom Huledet Sameach” (Happy Birthday) at a meal with the entire camp. If you would like to send something special to your child for his/her birthday (excluding food), please see the section on Mail and Packages for considerations on mailing times.

Will my child go on an overnight?

In general, all campers except those enrolled in Mini Session will go on an overnight (sleeping under the stars) and should come prepared by bringing a sleeping bag to camp. Guidelines for the youngest campers going on overnights vary from year to year and session to session (largely depending upon each age group’s readiness).

Can I bring special food to camp if my child has certain dietary needs?

Camp Alonim is under very strict kashrut supervision and, therefore, cannot accept food from outside of camp. If given notice, we can provide certain items for your child under certain circumstances (e.g., medical reasons). Please contact the office well in advance of the summer if you need to arrange that service. There are always vegetarian, vegan, and milk substitutes available at meals, and we are a celiac-friendly camp.

My child is studying for his/her Bar/Bat Mitzvah. Do you offer tutoring? Can he/she bring an iPod for this purpose?

Yes. Our Judaic educational staff can assist your child in his/her preparations. iPods or MP3 players without internet connection are allowed to be brought and used for this purpose only.

Is Laundry provided at camp?

Laundry will be provided once per session during Second and Third Session. Laundry is not provided during First Session, Mini Session, or Fourth Session. When campers send their clothes to the laundry, it typically takes two days to return. Laundry bags and their contents should all be clearly marked with your child’s name.

What happens if my camper misplaces something? Do you have a lost & found?

Campers tend to misplace belongings while at camp. Staff make every attempt to help campers locate lost and misplaced items. Parents can help this process by labeling ALL items brought to camp with camper’s FIRST and LAST name. Camp Alonim does not assume liability for loss of or damage to personal items.

It’s generally a good rule of thumb to leave items of significant monetary or sentimental value at home.

We will make every effort to contact you after the summer ends if we find an item which are labeled with a camper’s name. These items will be available for pickup from the Camp Alonim office, or can be mailed back to you at your charge.

How do you select the staff?

Camp Alonim takes pride in providing mature, professionally trained, fun and motivated staff. We employ numerous teachers with extensive experience working with children. Our bunk counselors and specialists are all college-age and have prior experience working with children. We personally interview every staff member, and we take pride in the rigor of our interview process. Staff members must have excellent references, and we conduct national background checks and sex offender checks on all staff members before they arrive at camp.

What does a typical day at Camp Alonim look like?

While a day at camp can differ slightly by age group, below is a sample daily schedule. For a more detailed explanation of all our activities and how they fit into a camp day, feel free to call us in the office at (877) 225-6646 and we’d be happy to discuss!

8:00 Boker Tov! Good Morning!
8:30 Breakfast
9:15 Bunk Clean-Up
9:45 Jewish Interactive Experiences
10:45 A Taste of Everything: Rotation Through Camp Experiences
12:00 Israeli Folk Dancing
12:30 Lunch
1:15 Rest Time & Mail Call
2:15 Camper’s Choice – Art Elective
3:15 Camper’s Choice – Active Elective
4:15 Free Time & Snack
5:15 Shower Time
6:30 Dinner
7:15 Evening Fun: Carnival, Scavenger Hunt, Sports Night
8:30 Snack & Cabin Time
Lilah Tov! Sweet Dreams!

Are cell phone, computers, iPods or other electronics allowed at camp?

We take pride in creating an intentionally unplugged community at Camp Alonim. Because of this, phones, laptops and other electronics are not available to campers and cell phones are not allowed at camp. A camper with a cell phone would be FAR less likely to fully enjoy everything camp has to offer. Do not promise your child that he/she can call home, as such a promise cannot be fulfilled. Do not send your child with a cell phone for emergency purposes; in the case of an emergency, a custodial parent/guardian will be notified by camp staff. Cell phones discovered in your child’s possession will be confiscated. We reserve the right to send a child home for violating this rule.

What happens if my child gets sick while at camp?

Camp Alonim has a modern Health Center staffed at all times while camp is in session. We typically have multiple nurses, counselors based in the Health Center, and a doctor-in-residence. Because of the communal living style at camp, it is not unusual for kids to catch the common cold during their session. Kids have two opportunities during the day for “sick call,” where your child is examined and it is determined if he/she has caught something. Please refer to your Family Handbook with more information about when we contact parents when a child is treated by the Health Center staff.

Can I call or visit my child?

Camp Alonim does not have a visitors’ day. Parents can see the camp and the bunks and other facilities on opening and closing days. Parents can write their children letters, but campers do not have access to phones while at camp. Given the time that campers are here at camp, it is actually easier for them to adjust if they have limited access to their usual technology. It is also important that campers “unplug” their lives while at camp. Communicating through writing letters is actually new to many of our campers who communicate mostly through e-mail and texting. Writing letters teaches them patience and other skills.

Can I email my camper?

Yes! Simply log in to your Alonim Account and click the “Email” link to access the one-way email system. This feature is strictly one-way, however, so your child will still send letters and postcards back to you the traditional way.

Can I view photos of camp during the session?

Yes! Your Alonim Account also contains our summer photo galleries and new pictures are posted daily by our onsite photographer. Please note that we do not upload pictures on Saturday.

Are care packages allowed?

We strive to maintain a clean and green environment at Camp Alonim. An abundance of packages not only creates waste but increases the focus on material items that we try to de-emphasize at camp and raises issues of inequity and competition. In light of this, we are joining with other Jewish summer camps in the area in an initiative to limit the way packages will be accepted here at Camp Alonim.

Camp Alonim will NO LONGER ACCEPT packages from any online retailers including Amazon, Target, Sealed With A Kiss (SWAK), Walmart, Zappos, etc.

In addition to postcards and letters, Camp Alonim will continue to accept packages provided they are being mailed directly from a home address and not an online retailer.

Packages may not contain prohibited items (such as electronic games or food of any kind). As in previous years, all packages will be opened and inspected by Camp Alonim office staff in front of campers, and prohibited items will be removed. Prohibited items will not be distributed to the camper or returned to the sender.

Is tipping allowed?

No. It is against Camp Alonim policy for staff members to accept tips in the form of money. Our staff works very hard and we believe that each staff member is integral in creating the experience that your child has. Tipping sends a message that some staff are more deserving than others, producing a level of competition that is not in line with our philosophy at Alonim. The staff works hard and we know you want to thank them! Thoughtful cards show your gratitude as parents, without creating competition amongst our staff.

Are scholarships available?

Yes. We work very hard to make sure money is not an issue when people choose to come to camp. Our anonymous committee reviews each case thoroughly and does its best to make sure every applicant receives as much aid as he/she needs to be able to attend camp. View more information on applying for scholarships.

Does my child need money at camp?

No, there is no need to send your child to camp with money.

These are great, but I have more questions! Where should I go to get my questions answered?

We’re happy to answer any more questions you have, and we love talking about camp! Feel free to contact us any of the following ways: By Phone at 877-225-6646 or by e-mail at alonim@aju.edu

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