Inside the OU

Best. Summer. Ever. Just Got Better: Discover JOLT Israel and Camp Maor

Girls sing at Camp Maor’s original song and dance performance, “Where Dreams are Born.”

Girls sing at Camp Maor’s original song and dance performance, “Where Dreams are Born.”

Making summer a meaningful and transformative experience in a young person’s life is the mantra of NCSY Summer. No wonder it keeps growing. This past year, NCSY Summer added two new programs to its array of summer programs catering to teens with different interests and backgrounds: JOLT Israel and Camp Maor.

NCSY currently offers fourteen unique summer programs in Israel, Europe and the US. A leader in Jewish camping, NCSY is also the largest single provider of teen trips to Israel, sending over 1,000 teens to Israel each summer.

JOLT participants on a hike in Israel.

JOLT participants on a hike in Israel.

JOLT Israel
Like its parent program, Jewish Overseas Leadership Training (JOLT), which takes teens to Eastern Europe where they receive leadership training, JOLT Israel takes teens to Israel where they hone their leadership skills. The highlight of JOLT Israel is when teens get to run a ten-day camp for siblings of children with cancer through Zichron Menachem. JOLT Israel participants use their leadership skills to plan, create and run a camp for these children, and ensure that each child is given the love and attention they need.  

“JOLT Israel teaches leadership skills through the lens of Israel and has participants put those lessons to use within the program,” says David Cutler, Director of NCSY Summer. “The hands-on element sets JOLT Israel apart from other leadership development programs.”

camp maor2

Captain Hook addresses the audience during Camp Maor’s production of Peter Pan.

Camp Maor
Founded by Camp Director Sari Kahn in 2014, Camp Maor is now operating under the NCSY umbrella. Located on a beautiful campus in the Pocono Mountains, the camp enables teen girls to explore their passions for the performing arts.

Participants choose between four “majors”—voice, dance, film, and theatre—taught by leading professionals who have combined their creative passions with Torah observance. The schedule also includes the usual swimming, sports and night activities, as well as daily shiurim, chessed projects, and inspirational Shabbatot. The summer culminates with a non-musical play for families followed by an original song and dance performance for women only.

For more information about any of the NCSY summer programs, visit  


This article was featured in the Summer 2016 issue of Jewish Action.
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