At GFC, we believe that everything we do is connected to four main values that are ever-present in Judaism and in life. We hope that by bringing these four values to the forefront of our minds as a full staff, we will be better able to create and maintain a safe, fun, and Jewish environment and community for our campers from summer to summer.
Reut – רעות
At camp, one of the very first words that comes to everyone’s minds is “friends.” Camp is where we make friends, whether for that summer only or for our lifetime. Regardless, reut is more than just “saying” you have tons of friends at camp, it means you have made meaningful and worthwhile relationships with people you feel connected to at some level. This connection often goes beyond camp’s gates after the summer season has come to an end.
Kavod – כבוד
A basic life value, and Jewish value, is respecting your peers no matter the differences between you and them. To respect yourself, too, will then allow you to be respectful of those around you. At GFC, we build much of our camp culture on the value and tenant of respect. It just makes sense. Without respect, what would we be?
Presence and Self-Care
Hineni – הנני
This value pertains to the individual. It reminds us to remember to always take care of ourselves. It also symbolizes us, as individuals, actually doing something and saying, “Here I am!” rather than “Hey everybody, look at me.” The “doing something” part is doing something meaningful, impactful, and significant for the camp community. Being an individual first allows us to give more to our friends and bunkmates, and to the greater community.
Am Yisrael – עם ישאל
We are a community of Jewish people. More deeply, our personal identifications as being Jewish contribute to an innate atmosphere that we have here at GFC—a safe, common space that is nothing like what our campers and some of our staff experience when they are not at camp. To be a member of a Jewish community is rare. For many campers and staff who attend GFC during a summer, that is something to be valued, respected, and continued.