The JCC’s Bulletin dates back to the 1930s, when it was a premier source of news for the local Jewish community. We are proud to continue this tradition of keeping our JCC community informed via our virtual Bulletin.
The bulletin circa 1974
To help compensate for the loss of learning that many students have experienced during the pandemic, the JCC Day Camp is partnering with Catapult Learning to provide a summer learning program to enrolled JCC campers. The Summer Learning Experience has been funded through the generosity of a grant from UJA-Federation, which will allow the Joan & Alan Bernikow JCC of Staten Island to provide this service to campers free of charge.
Campers who opt in to the Summer Learning Experience will receive 2 weekly instruction sessions—one math and one literacy—taught by highly qualified staff. Instruction will take place at the campgrounds during the camp day, in small groups based on age. Campers will observe social distancing and follow other CDC safety guidelines.
The summer learning experience includes literacy intervention using the Achieve Literacy program. The program is designed specifically to support foundational reading skills, increase fluency, and improve comprehension. Additionally, the Achieve Math program will help campers improve their foundational skills and improve their math fluency. The program ranges from basic concepts and computation to problem solving, data collection, geometry, and algebra.
The program will be open to JCC Day Campers entering 1st grade up through those entering 9th grade, as well as children enrolled in Marvin’s Camp for Children with Special Needs. Capacity is limited, and campers will be enrolled in this program on a first-come, first-served basis.
“This is a great opportunity for campers to regain some of the educational losses they’ve seen over the past year of remote learning,” said Glenn Wechsler, Camp Co-Director. “For families that opt in, this program will supplement the fun activities we will have throughout the summer in our Day Camp and Marvin’s Camp programs.”
Typical camp programs, including swimming, sports, games, arts & crafts, and special events, will continue this summer. Other fun STEM activities (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) will also take place in addition to the Catapult Learning program. Recently added programs include woodworking and LEGO robotics activities.
Founded in 1976, Catapult Learning is the leading provider of intervention, professional development, special and transitional education programs. Catapult Learning’s intervention programs support struggling learners with instruction tailored to the unique needs of each student and is built on the critical components of effective programs, as reviewed in current research, including the National Reading Panel and the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics. Across the country, Catapult Learning partners with 500+ school districts, including 18 of the 20 largest, to produce positive outcomes that promote academic and professional growth.
For more information about JCC Day Camp, visit Camp.SIJCC.org or call Glenn Wechsler at 718.475.5231.
Thirteen-year-old Tzipora Guttman is celebrating her upcoming Bat Mitzvah by raising money for the Joan & Alan Bernikow JCC of Staten Island’s program to feed seniors in need. Mitzvah projects, like Tzipora’s, are an opportunity for teens to take on responsibility and do good for others before celebrating their coming-of-age in the Jewish tradition.
Tzipora, a camper at the JCC’s Day Camp, wanted to support those facing food insecurity during the pandemic: “Most of us take food for granted as we never need to worry about our next meal. Sadly, though, others aren’t so fortunate.”
While there are many non-profits that help fight food insecurity, Tzipora selected the JCC for her project because of their efforts to aid senior citizens, including Holocaust survivors. This cause is especially close to her heart, as her paternal grandparents were both Holocaust survivors. Taking inspiration from her grandparents’ lives, Tzipora said, “My grandparents experienced immense hunger and suffering during their time in Auschwitz. While Americans today do not face the horrors of the Holocaust firsthand, hunger is still a prevalent issue in our communities.”
You can watch a video of Tzipora’s grandfather speaking about his experience here.
In 2017, Feeding America released a study showing that 1 in 12 seniors face food insecurity. This number has surely grown, with seniors experiencing financial hardship, social isolation, and difficulty shopping for themselves due to the pandemic. Recognizing the problem here at home, the JCC stepped in to distribute thousands of free, healthy meals to seniors over the past year, through a contactless, grab-and-go pickup program. With a sustained need for these meals, the program has struggled to remain funded, relying on grants and the generosity of donors. Before her Bat Mitzvah on May 1, Tzipora aims to raise $1800 to help the JCC continue this important program.
Orit Lender, CEO of the JCC, expressed her gratitude to Tzipora and to all who have donated to her fundraiser so far: “We are so proud of Tzipora for choosing to honor her Bat Mitzvah in this meaningful way, which will help make a difference in the lives of so many seniors. This is a wonderful reminder to us all that, in spite of these challenging times, the next generation is lighting the way to a brighter future.”
To support Tzipora’s project and help feed Staten Island seniors in need, you can donate here.
Summer is right around the corner, and we want to share some great news about Lucille & Jay Chazanoff Sunrise Day Camp-Staten Island, a free camp for children with cancer and their siblings.
After a virtual camp experience last summer, we are happy to announce that Sunrise will resume in-person camp on July 1st. We are also excited to announce that we have found a new home for Sunrise on the campus of Staten Island Academy.
Staten Island Academy boasts a 12-acre campus, offering ample space for Sunrise campers to take part in activities both indoors and outdoors. In addition to previous summers’ activities, campers will also now have access to two swimming pools and larger field space. To ensure the health and safety of all its campers, Sunrise will have exclusive use of their own program areas separate from the Staten Island Academy’s summer programs.
Unfortunately, over the past year, we have all experienced firsthand what it feels like for a family of a child with cancer. The fear and uncertainty that we have been feeling is what our campers and their families have felt every day since their diagnoses. That’s why we’re thrilled to be able to bring back a safe, in-person experience for these children to allow them to socialize and enjoy themselves. Sunrise Day Camp brings back the joys of childhood to children struggling with cancer, transforming months of loneliness and isolation into summers filled with friendship, laughter, and happiness.
Sunrise will operate this summer from July 1 - August 5, with enhanced safety protocols in place to minimize the potential of any COVID-19 transmission at camp. A virtual camp option will also be available for those families who may prefer or need distance-camping.
Recognizing the extraordinary financial demands that a child’s chronic illness can have on a family, Sunrise Day Camp and its year-round and in-hospital programs, Sunrise Sundays and Sunrise on Wheels, are provided completely free of charge to campers’ families. Sunrise Day Camp-Staten Island proudly serves children with cancer and their siblings from Staten Island, Manhattan, Brooklyn, and nearby New Jersey on a non-sectarian basis. We are a proud member of the Sunrise Association, whose mission is to bring back the joys of childhood to children with cancer and their siblings worldwide.
Funds for Sunrise Day Camp-Staten Island are raised through donations and community events, including our annual SunriseWALKS in June. We hope you will join us for this year’s event, SunriseWALKS YOUR WAY, which will take place on Sunday, June 27th. You can participate in the walk from anywhere that is fun, meaningful, and safe! You can learn more and register here.
We are eagerly counting down the days until summer is here, and we can’t wait for our Sunrise campers to get to explore their new summer home!
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1466 Manor Road
Staten Island, NY 10314
485 Victory Blvd
Staten Island, NY 10301
1297 Arthur Kill Road
Staten Island, NY 10312
BERMAN EARLY CHILDHOOD CENTER
2221 Richmond Ave.
Staten Island, NY 10314