We all know of the great importance and of the positive effect that overnight camp has on a child. This can be seen clearly from the Rebbe’s emphasis many times and from the fact that the Rebbe took many precious hours out of his schedule to visit camp 3 times.
As well, the tireless dedication of the staff, head staff and directors is unmatched, and I am certain that this brings the Rebbe much nachas.
However, I’d like to voice a slight concern with the way some of these wonderful mosods are being run.
We all as parents wanting to achieve nothing but the absolute best for our children are aware that this can be quite costly.
But when it comes to camp however the expenses are in a league of their own.
Let’s do a little breakdown.
This is the most obvious expense. You see, camp had their expenses. And in order to function properly, a large part of the cost is passed to the parents.
2) Spending money. This is something all parents view differently. Some choose to give their children a lot, and some none.
This is understandable.
Now here’s where things start sounding funny…
Our children’s staff work hard. No one denies that. And yes, they definitely are deserving of our immense appreciation for giving our children a great summer.
However, something doesn’t add up.
Take School tuition for example.
We pay lots of money. But we know that a large part of our money is going to pay staff a salary. As well as regular expenses of a functioning mosad (building etc.).
The way camps are ran never really bothered me. However as we’ve decided it’s time to send our third child to camp, I couldn’t help but beg the question.
My oldest son has been a staff member for the past 2 years at a mainstream CGI overnight camp. He told me that your average pay for a typical staff member over two months is between 200-400 dollars.
You heard right. Between 200 and 400 dollars! Am I the only person to find this absurd???
Something doesn’t add up!
Most parents of campers who attend overnight camps are paying about ten times that amount PER CHILD!
Not withstanding, when I asked him if they at least give good “gashmiyusdike” compensation I was shocked at his reply. He told me that general staff and learning teachers in many of these camps are put to sleeping conditions that are infested with mice and mold. And the leadership in many of these camps give attitude and make them feel like they are being done a favor.
Now here comes my big question.
Why are camps being ran like businesses but paying like shlichus?
You see, as I said, the pay we give and the pay our staff get just doesn’t add up at all.
I beg to ask the following question. Dear camp director, where is our money going?
Don’t get me wrong. I understand you deserve a salary. But isn’t this taking it too far?
I’ve spoken to a non-lubavitch friend of mine. He told me that this problem is nowhere as existent in their camps. Is their pay like that of a regular job? No. But it’s a “mentchliche” amount.
He told me as well that in most camps there is a “no tipping” policy as to not make parents feel under pressure to always think they aren’t giving enough.
Dear parent, when registering your child for for camp please ask the director this question.
Together we can make a difference.