Greene was established in 1976 by interested parents and children to build an unforgettable religious, cultural, recreational, and emotional experience. But our story begins much earlier than that.
During the late sixties and early seventies, members of TOFTY (Texas Oklahoma Federation of Temple Youth) had nowhere to call home. The Henry S. Jacobs Camp had been recently founded in Utica Mississippi, but that was too far for Texas and Oklahoma Temple Youth Groups to travel. The URJ (Union for Reform Judaism) and NFTY (The North American Federation of Temple Youth) had already founded a number of other camps throughout the US and the families of Texas wanted in!
Our first session was held in the summer of 1976 with 50 campers. Our first director was Rabbi Solomon Kahn Kaplan z”l and he was soon joined by Rabbi Larry Jackofsky z”l as our second camp director. Camp Chairs through the years have included Edward C. Greene, Davna Brook, Arnold Miller, Michael Wolf, Michael Solka, and Steve Donchin.
The mission of Greene Family Camp is to create a fun, safe, educational friend-filled environment that teaches and practices Judaism. GFC encourages personal and spiritual growth through creative programs and varied activities. Below is the mission statement most recently envisioned by our summer and full time staff.
Hineini – Here I am
– I am here to find my place and strengthen my connection to the Greene Family Camp community and the Jewish community
– I am here to make Judaism my own and explore my spirituality
– I am here to respect myself, this place, and others, putting my Jewish values into action every day.
– I am here to create the best version of myself and to help you do the same.
I am here to make the most of every day, every situation, and every relationship with the people who are here with me.
Im ein ani li mi li? U-ch sh’ani li’atzmi ma ani? Ve-im lo achshav, eymatai? If I am not for myself, who will be for me?
If I am only for myself, what am I? If not now, when? (Pirkei Avot 1.14)