JCRC offers summer camp options for teens

For Jewish teens looking for a meaningful and unique summer day camp experience, the Jewish Community Relations Council of St. Louis (JCRC) is offering two programs this July. During the week of July 12-16, teens can participate in a weeklong community service camp. During the week of July 19-23, they can experience a teen environmental camp.

The community service camp, known as St. Louis Interfaith Community Explorations (SLICE), gives teens ages 12-16 an opportunity to volunteer and make a difference in underserved communities in St. Louis. Jewish students work alongside teens from other faith communities. Sponsored by Interfaith Partnership/Faith Beyond Walls, SLICE runs each day from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. The cost for teens attending through JCRC is $ 75 per person and includes lunch, water and a camp T-shirt. Kosher meals are provided on request.

SLICE campers participate in a poverty simulation on the first day of camp to gain a better understanding of what it means to live in poverty. “Poverty is something you hear about but you tend to brush it off,” said Hannah Cropf, one of the teens participating in SLICE last summer. “So it was informative to experience something similar, because you realize there are people who have to go through this every day.”

For those teens who are passionate about environmental issues, or just want to learn more, JCRC’s Jewish Environmental Initiative (JEI) teen camp will offer a week-long program studying and exploring local ecosystems at the Litzsinger Road Ecology Center (LREC), which is a program of the Missouri Botanical Garden. Activities will include tree and plant identification, invasive species removal and hands on study of other local environmental issues. The camp also will include activities that focus on the connection between Judaism and the environment. The JEI teen environmental camp runs 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. daily and the cost is $50 for the week. Teen must be entering grades 9-12 to attend.


Gidon Feen, who attended a summer camp at LREC last year, highly praised the programming at the Center. “I learned a tremendous amount about the natural world. Our group of campers learned through lectures and hands-on experiences. Whether we were testing the acidity of water or removing invasive species, I was seldom bored. We had a really good time trekking through the on-site prairies and woodlands.”

For more information or to register for either or both camps contact Gail Wechsler at the JCRC at 314-442-3894 or [email protected]