Camp Prep #4: Camper Communication

CYJ Prep - Camp Young Judea Texas

Shalom Parents!

Welcome back to the WimberLead, your weekly news source for camp preparation. This week’s topic: Camper Communication!

This week, we’ll cover the various methods of communication to stay in touch with your campers during the summer. As the Beatles once sang, “I’ll write home everyday, and I’ll send all my loving to you.” While we have no doubts your children will send their love, every day seems pretty ambitious! When our campers aren’t busy having fun, here’s how you can expect to hear from them and reach out to say hello.

Mail

Whereas adults may wonder what the “E” in “Email” means, your kids are more likely to ask about the “mail”! Call us old, but we remain big fans of handwritten letters. Your campers love getting letters from loved ones and we love watching them slow down to write to you about their adventures (this is also good practice at technology alternatives, see last week’s Camper Prep email).  Mail should be addressed as follows:

Camper Name

Cabin Number (you will find this out on Opening Day) 

Camp Young Judaea Texas 121 Camp Young Judaea Dr 

Woodcreek, TX  78676

A few mail hints:

  • Woodcreek/Wimberley mail can be slow (except for the Wimberlead)- it may take a day or two longer than you are used to. (Good thing most kids don’t know how long a letter should take!)
  • If you mail a letter before camp begins, your kids will be thrilled to receive it when they arrive. Don't worry that you won't know their bunk number – we’ll take care of it!!
  • Coach your children on how to address letters or help them pre-address and pre-stamp some envelopes to get them started. This is especially important for younger campers. We’ll be sure to fix any mistakes or add missing stamps, although this may delay you getting your much-anticipated letters!
  • Our weather trackers don’t predict any sleet or snow this summer, but we do forecast a day of rest every Saturday. Due to Shabbat, Saturday mail will be delivered on Sunday.
  • REMINDER: with the exception of birthdays or forgotten items that we cannot provide, packages are prohibited. Please label those packages “BIRTHDAY” or “C/O CAMPER CARE TEAM.”  All packages will be opened before delivery and inappropriate items removed.

Email

You can log in to the  CampInTouch system to:

  • Send email to your campers.  By purchasing “Camp Stamps”, you can email letters which we print and distribute to the campers with the regular mail. Emails sent after 10:00 AM will be delivered the following day.
  • Receive emails from your campers.  If you request it, your campers will write back to you on special bar coded sheets that we send to your CampInTouch inbox.  When you send an email, you can “Request a Reply,” and we will deliver a blank sheet for them to write you back.  Parent tip: Print 5-10 blank sheets before the summer with your camper’s bar code for them to take to camp (there is no charge until they actually use one of these “emails”).

*A note about camper emails and letters*:

Twice a week your camper is required to write a letter or email (on the bar coded sheet) in order to get access to breakfast. Please keep in mind that these letters do not have to be to you, the parents. This way we can make sure that each camper is communicating with the outside world....mostly. (In past years, some parents may or may not have received a letter with the words "MEAL TICKET" written in huge letters across it...)

Camper Photos

Where’s Waldo? You’re about to find him. Waldo is a website/mobile app where you can see pictures of your campers in action, taken daily by our bunk staff and photographer. Photos are sorted by Aidah (age group) and available for download for free. You are also able to join their paid service which employs facial recognition software. If you participate in the paid service, you upload a picture of your child to the Waldo website before camp, and Waldo will find your child as soon as camp photos are uploaded. You then get notified when pictures are posted in real time.  And so Bubby and Zaide can also kvell, you can request that up to 5 email addresses to receive notifications.

Click hereto learn more about our Waldo picture service.

Facebook and Instagram

If you aren’t already, make sure to follow us on Facebook and Instagram.  Through our Daily Digest on Facebook, you can read more about camp activities, highlighting a few Aidot each day.  On both Facebook and Instagram, our full-time photographer will share high-quality pictures and videos which you can of course share throughout your networks (hint hint!) If you have any questions at all as you get ready for camp, no need to use the postal service. Send us an email to info@cyjtexas.org or call us at 713-723-8354.  You can also search our Knowledge Base to learn more about not only communications with your camper, but anything you may be wondering about to get ready for camp.

Next up in the Camp Prep Series:  Homesickness

Camp Prep Series:
#1:  Transportation 
#2:  Food at Camp
#3:  Packing
#4:  Camper Communication 
#5:  Homesickness   
#6:  Camper Care and Medical Teams   
#7:  Meet the Merakzim!

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