From the Camp Clipboard: Staff Shine for Summer 2021

Hi Herzl Camp Community!

How fabulous is this daily blog?! I’m sure it’s great to be able to stay in the loop with what is happening on the ground here at camp. Recent posts have focused on the camper experience and I get to talk about the staff that help create the camper experience – the people who make that Herzl magic come alive! 

It has been two years since anyone has been at camp, as well as survived a pandemic where there haven’t been tons of face-to-face social interactions. We all know that camp is full of activities and constant motion. The resilience our staff have shown in both being able to adjust themselves and being there for their campers is unbelievable. 

Arrival day at the Mercaz gave me goosebumps because at that moment it didn’t matter how much time passed. I was blown away by the ways that staff were able to fill that space with spirit, energy, and enthusiasm. I got to know all of these people over the past year on zoom and then spent our first week at camp together in training. I hadn’t seen them in camp mode and all of a sudden they were on stage, inspiring campers from the minute they arrived. 

I have been impressed by certain staff members who are constantly jumping in wherever they can, even if it is outside their role. That’s what this summer is all about – being willing and able to support others. 

In basketball there are plenty of games where the game plan doesn’t go as planned and you need to make in-game adjustments. The first week and a half at camp has been a lot of in-camp adjustments. A player may be a scorer for most games but for another game they may need to focus on rebounding or defense instead. There are staff at camp who have a specific speciality area but have needed to dive into another role, because that is what camp needs right now. Our staff are showing up every day for the team, and it is certainly making a huge difference. 

Admittedly, staff have experienced many ups and downs as we’ve worked through the early summer hiccups, yet the camper experience and Herzl magic remains unphased. Campers are having an incredible experience, because the staff are working together and showing up for each other. We are not a staff with an MVP; we are a staff filled with MVTPs – Most Valuable Team Players!!! =)


Jacqui Kalin, Staff Life and Development Coordinator

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