So what is Camp America?

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So what is Camp America?

For those who have always longed to visit the States, get to know the people up-close and personal and boost their CV… this is your chance

Jewish News 3

Camp America is a cultural exchange programme that gives young people the chance to spend their summer living and working on a camp in the USA. They are the biggest international summer camp staff provider; recruiting thousands of young people each year and giving them the experience of a lifetime in America.

This programme is a unique opportunity in which you can make friends for life, immerse yourself in the great outdoors, gain valuable life experience and enhance your CV. Not only do you get a rewarding experience impacting the campers you work with at camp and becoming a role-model; you also get the chance to travel across the USA for up to 30 days afterwards, broadening your horizons and exploring all that America has to offer.

Every year Camp America sends more than 7,000 people to work on summer camps across the USA. Being a designated J-1 visa sponsor and with offices in London, USA, Australia, Germany and Poland, the organisation provides an army of support for all their applicants both pre and post departure to the USA.

How Camp America got started… Well, it’s part of the American Institute For Foreign Study (AIFS) which was founded in 1964 and is one of the oldest, largest and most respected cultural exchange organisations in the world. Camp America was established through AIFS in 1969.

Cyril Taylor, camp American founder
Cyril Taylor, camp American founder

It was Yorkshireman, Sir Cyril Taylor who came up with the idea of AIFS and his own impressive cv is a testament to the quality of the CA experience. A former military service member with the King’s African Rifles in Kenya, Sir Cyril graduated from Cambridge University and then went on to pursue an MBA at Harvard Business School.

It was after this while working for Procter & Gamble in Cincinnati that he realised there was a gap in the market for language teachers looking to take students abroad and initially in Europe. This led to the formation of AIFS which now has global offices in six different countries and organises various cultural exchange programmes for more than 50,000 participants each year of which CA is part.

Fifty years on and Sir Cyril Taylor is still the devoted and inspiring Chairman responsible for engineering the best summer of many young people’s lives.

Camp America in 1980
Camp America in 1980

The Jewish Experience Jewish summer camping in the USA is as American as apple pie and if that is where you would prefer to have this incredible life-changing experience it can be arranged as a lot of camps have a strong Jewish connection.

The recently launched programme Jewish Camp America, gives Jewish applicants guaranteed placements at Jewish camps. This opportunity allows Jewish applicants to experience a Jewish community in another culture, whilst also gaining incredible life skills and memories.

The camps offer all the activities and facilities you would expect anywhere else, but with a commitment to Judaism that includes Kosher Meals, a Shabbat programme for Friday nights and Saturdays and special events and activities to promote Jewish and Israeli culture.

The Jewish Camp America programme works with Traditional, Reform and Orthodox Jewish Camps, and provides a one on one service to ensure every applicant is placed on a camp that is perfect for them and best suits their level of Judaism. On top of this, Camp America provides the full package; including flights, visa and medical insurance to ensure every applicant is fully supported in their Camp America journey.


And for all those worried Jewish parents… As a JCA senior staff member Allen Langer is in a position to offer words of reassurance to those who are concerned about sending their off-spring overseas to look after someone else’s li gttle ones. After summers on a Jewish summer camp in Pennsylvania as a counselor and Unit Leader, Allen has all the answers and perhaps more importantly he is the father of two sons.

“My eldest son worked on Capital Camps (part of the JJC camps of the USA) for three summers and my youngest is to participate for his first summer in 2016,” says Allen. “As a parent I understand all the worries and concerns you as a fellow parent may have (I went through them myself) and you can contact me on 0207 581 7335 or at so I can share my experience and answer any questions you may have.”

Even though all JCA applicants are considered legal adults (they all must be 18+ to partake on the programme) CA understand that the parents can play a large role in all aspects of their child’s application and placement (including payments that may be coming from the bank of mum and dad).

So let just to put your mind at ease:

• Jewish Camp America is part of the Camp America Cultural exchange organization. Camp America is the largest, most established and ONLY US Jewish camp recruiter that is designated by the US government to recruit applicants to work on children’s summer camps

• JCA offers a full inclusive package that includes flights, insurance and a 24 hour support service while in the USA

• JCA arranges all travel to the USA including flights, first night accommodation in NY and in most cases staff placed on the same camp travel together

• Most experienced UK support team available. Every member of the JCA and Camp America support team have all worked at camp

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