New director for JCamp at the Simon Family JCC

by | May 3, 2019 | Uncategorized

Eliana Rohrig

JCamp’s new director, Eliana Rohrig, has spent a lot of time at camp—as a camper, counselor, and division head—primarily at Camp Ramah in Nyack, N.Y. She spent a semester studying at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, served on Chabad’s General Board in Binghamton, N.Y. and volunteered with Hillel, also in Binghamton. Rohrig teaches at Park Avenue Synagogue in New York City and is an interviewer for Birthright—Israel Free Spirit. She joins JCamp at the Simon Family JCC later this month.

“We are so excited that Eliana will lead JCamp.” says Betty Ann Levin, UJFT executive vice president. “Her energy and ideas are just terrific. We can’t wait for her to arrive.”

Jewish News: What attracts you to camp?

Eliana Rohrig: What attracts me to camp is the intentional community that is created to keep a kid’s mind, body, and soul engaged during the summer time.

Summer is an amazing opportunity to express parts of our identities that do not always have the space to fully ‘breathe’ during the year. Whether it’s dance, sports, singing during lunch, or getting over the fear of the deep end of the swimming pool, camp is a place where children grow and are encouraged to be their best selves.

Camp is a place where it is safe to take risks. Part of the reason this is the true is because parents trust camp counselors to nurture and guide their children, which is both empowering for the counselors and exciting for the campers to have great role models.

JN: What attracts you to Jewish camp, in particular?

ER: I find that Jewish camp is a powerful educational tool to show how joyful it is to live an active Jewish life! My experiences growing up at Jewish summer camp gave me fantastic Jewish friends, Jewish role models, and an uplifting Jewish community.

JN: What do you hope to bring to JCamp?

ER: I hope to bring energy and enthusiasm to JCamp. I love summer, I love camp, and I love being Jewish. Nothing makes me happier than seeing tired smiling faces at the end of a jam-packed camp day and I can’t wait to be part of the JCamp story for Kayitz 2019.

JN: Do you have a favorite day camp memory?

ER: I think my favorite day camp memory was my first summer as a camp counselor on Trip Day taking my bunk of girls down water slides and watching their confidence levels soar as they experienced that exhilarating adventure together.

JN: Other than your time in Israel, you’ve spent the majority of your life in New York. So, how do you feel about spending the summer in Virginia?

ER: Yes, I am a true New Yorker and have never lived outside of a city! Driving to work every day will be a new experience for me, since I take the subway every day. I am truly so excited to be near the beach, have opportunities to hike on the weekends, and get to know the personality of Norfolk and Virginia Beach.

JN: Is there anything you’d like the Jewish community to know about you?

ER: I would love for them to know how excited I am to meet different community members and how much I appreciate how welcoming everyone has been so far. That is exactly what is so wonderful about being Jewish, no matter where you go in the world, you have people excited to meet you and learn from you. I am beyond grateful for that and know I have so much to learn from all of you.