About Camp Be’chol Lashon

Camp Be’chol Lashon is a multicultural Jewish overnight camp in the San Francisco Bay Area for campers from all over the United States, ages 8-18, with special leadership opportunities for ages 15-18. It teaches about global Jewish diversity, builds community leaders, and inspires a love of Judaism.

The camp is located at beautiful Walker Creek Ranch in West Marin, an hour north of San Francisco. This year, summer camp will be two weeks, ending with a Parents/Family Camp Shabbaton weekend.

Be’chol Lashon continues to grow and evolve. Stay tuned for exciting year-round opportunities for our older campers who are anticipating applying to college, and our alumni who are attending college. In addition to building a stronger support network, students will have the benefit of Be’chol Lashon programs and speakers to educate their local and college communities about diversity in the Jewish community.

Dates and Prices

Week*:
Grade:
Dates:
First

2-12


July 22 - July 29


Second

2-12
July 29 - August 5

Parents/Family Weekend

2-12
August 3 - August 5 (or August 4-5)
Options:
Price**:
You Save:

Any 1 Week

$1,200
$0

Both Weeks

$2,300
$100

Parents/Family Weekend

Click here
n/a

*We recommend that new campers coming for only one week sign up for the second session so parents can come for Parents Weekend.
**We offer a 10% discount if you bring a friend (for you and your friend!).

What's unique about Camp Be’chol Lashon?

We expand children’s awareness of themselves in relation to the racial, ethnic, and cultural diversity of Jews around the world, highlighting inclusion, diversity and connection as hallmarks of Judaism.

Part of each day is devoted to exploring global Jewish communities around the world, engaging in the art, dance, music, cooking and the history that defines each unique culture, as well as recognizing the shared values that connect all Jews.

We focus on individuals’ stories and their value to the collective, encouraging conversations and celebrating differences between people as an asset, providing the ability to see oneself as part of a complex multi-faceted community where race is one of many distinguishing factors.

What's new at Camp Be'chol Lashon?

This year, we are focusing on opportunities for campers to have a strong voice in developing their own personal leadership style. Through mentors and small advisory groups, campers will have a variety options to explore at their own pace through play, exploring, creating art, dancing, performing, writing, sports, conversation and friendship. They will learn new skills to navigate their identities with increased confidence.

Meet the Staff

Sarah Spencer, Camp Director
Sarah earned her Masters in Counseling Psychology from the University of San Francisco. Her marriage and family therapy practice is focused on adolescent identity development and multi-cultural, multi-racial and multi-religious blended families. She also works in schools as a diversity counselor. Sarah has extensive experience as Jewish eductor. She directed Club 18 at JCCSF for five years, a space for teens to explore and express their identities through a variety of social, educational and leadership activities. Sarah was raised in San Francisco in a large, blended multicultural family and is raising two "Jewmaican" children.



Lindsey Newman, Camp Assistant Director
Lindsey is the Program Manager at Be'chol Lashon. She received her B.S. in Industrial and Labor Relations from Cornell University. Previously to joining Be'chol Lashon Lindsey worked as a research assistant at a women's rights organization and as an early childhood educator at a small day school in New York City. In 2011 she spent 6 months living in Tel Aviv and working for Itaach Maaki: Women Lawyers for Social Justice. Lindsey is biracial and adopted and grew up in an Ashkenazi Jewish family on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. While always a New Yorker at heart, Lindsey is excited to explore her new home in the Bay Area while advancing the cause for Jewish diversity at Be'chol Lashon.



Marcella White Campbell, Camp Program Director
Marcella is the Marketing Director at Be'chol Lashon. She graduated from Stanford University with a B.A. in English. She holds an M.A. in Literature from San Francisco State University, with particular focus on the memoirs of early 20th-century Jewish American women writers. Prior to working with Be'chol Lashon, Marcella was an editor, copywriter, social media and content manager, and marketing consultant with Silicon Valley startups in the parenting and education spaces.



Julia Hernandez Nierenberg, Camp Program Coordinator
Julia Nierenberg is the Program and Speaker's Bureau Coordinator at Be'chol Lashon. She recently graduated from American University in Washington, DC with a B.A. in International Relations and Spanish Language Studies. She also received her Undergraduate Certificate in Spanish Translation while in college. Julia was born in San Francisco to a Catholic mother and Jewish father. At a young age, Julia was drawn to Judaism after attending camp and religious services and decided to have a Bat-Mitzvah in high school after an exploration of her faith.



Interested in joining the Camp Be'chol Lashon Staff? If so, please apply using this form and we will contact you.

Camp 2010

Testimonials

Usually I would say I want to go to camp to see all my old friends, but to be honest they are not friends. They are FAMILY! Every summer I count down the days until I go to camp because it's that exciting. Every year I learn something new about myself. Camp Be'chol Lashon is my second home, and I can't wait to go back this summer.
- Camper, Age 12



Ndashi had a unique, marvelous, transformative summer. She couldn't stop raving about camp. She says, "Mom, you HAVE TO send me back next year!" With all of Ndashi's many opportunities, she's never had an opportunity as special, and as needed for her, as Be'chol Lashon. It really made her feel a sense of belonging and pride.
- Alysha Beyer, Nadashi's mother



Frequently Asked Questions

What if my child wants to go for more than one week?
Many campers come for 2 weeks as the programming is different each of the sessions.


Why Camp Be'chol Lashon?
Our diverse Camp Be'chol Lashon staff foster global Jewish identity development in a safe, nurturing environment. A more expansive vision of the Jewish people coincides with the world-view of younger generations of Jews who have increasing access to technology, and for whom being Jewish is one of many identities. Campers develop Jewish friendship circles and build a deeper connection to Jewish life through diverse programming that reflects the multiple identities of contemporary Jews.

We see all of our campers as future leaders. Since some are in the position of being spokespeople and educating others about their Jewish journey, we want them to be prepared and feel supported. We encourage all campers to see multiple identities as an asset, allowing them greater tolerance and understanding of complexity. Our goal is to foster cultural competence, giving children the skills to successfully navigate life as proud Jews and global citizens.


Who is Camp Be'chol Lashon for?
While ALL children are invited to be part of a global Jewish community, Camp Be'chol Lashon is the only summer camp focused on Jews as a multicultural people. CBL expands the borders of the Jewish community, allowing ethnically and racially diverse Jews to see themselves as an integral part of world Jewry. CBL brings kids of diverse experience and backgrounds together and facilitates deep and lasting friendships.


Are out of state campers welcome?
Yes! CBL is located in the San francisco Bay Area, but campers come from around the country and around the world. We personally accompany children to and from the airport


Summer camp feels out of reach financially. Do we qualify for financial assistance?
You should definitely apply. We recognize that the expense of summer camp may be a barrier to participation. There are both incentive and need-based campership options. Call us at 415.386.2604, or click here for more information.


What should campers pack?
Click here to see the packing list.


What do campers do everyday?
In addition to activities like kayaking and canoeing, the success of Camp Be'chol Lashon has been in large part due to its innovative curriculum "Passort to Peoplehood" that focuses on the vision of Jews as a global multicultural people. Each day campers use their 'passports' to 'travel' to a different country to encounter the culture of different Jewish communities through art, music, dance, and cooking.


My child has never been to camp and is on the fence about signing up?
We are happy to schedule a Skype call with you and your child to ask questions and discuss any concerns. In our experience, this is a great way to get to know the counselors, make a reassuring connection, and generate excitement.


My child has never been to camp and doesn't know anyone. Is this typical?
Yes! Every session has a mix of new and returning campers. Camp Be'chol Lashon is a welcoming place for everyone. We are a relatively small camp which allows us to pay careful attention to the emotional experience and identity development of each camper.


I'm worried my child will be homesick. How will you handle this?
We regard "homesickness" as a normal, healthy occurrence for children and refer to this as "missing home" to help differentiate the feeling from a sickness. Our staff members and veteran campers provide appropriate support.


Is camp kosher?
No. Walker Creek Ranch offers kosher-style, vegetarian, and vegan food options. We do not serve bacon or shellfish, nor do we mix meat and dairy.

What if my child already goes to another summer camp?
Many of our campers attend multiple camps during the summer. We see CBL as a supplemental leadership camp focused on positive identity development in a multicultural Jewish context.


What is your poison oak and tick protocol?
While Walker Creek Ranch in West Marin is an ideal summer camp location, it is not without various challenge that exist in all California country settings including poison oak and ticks. Therefore we adhere to the following protocol: 1. Identifying and being aware of situations that include greater proximity to poison oak and ticks such as walking in heavily wooded areas, high grass, etc. In anticipation of hikes, campers are required to wear protective clothing like long pants and closed shoes. 2. Campers are advised to conduct a "tick check" every day, with the assistance of staff when requested. 3. Staff are trained on how to identify and remove a tick. If exposure to poison oak is suspected, campers shower with Tecnu and their clothes are washed. 4. There are a variety of insect repellents available including Permethrin, that campers can bring to camp. Natural insect repellents will be available like Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus will be available at camp. We will also engage in making our own natural repellent that repels ticks: In a spray bottle, mix 2 cups of distilled white vinegar and 1 cup of water, with the addition of 20 drops of Eucalyptus oil, peppermint and/or citrus oils. It can be sprayed onto clothing, skin, and hair and is safe to reapply frequently.


Have a another question? Email camp@bechollashon.org or call us at 415.386.2604 to get an answer from a Be'chol Lashon staff member.