A Taste of Tawonga’s Mission

Camp Tawonga is a mission-driven community. Everything we do at Camp is rooted in our core Mission and Philosophy. The Camp Tawonga Mission, in action since 1925, has four parts: Positive Self-Image & Self-Esteem, Creating a Cooperative Community, Tikkun Olam- A Partnership with Nature and Spirituality and Positive Jewish Identification.


The first part of our Mission deals with fostering positive self-image and self-esteem. Counselors are constantly putting “money” in campers’ “emotional piggy banks”, building up their confidence and self-esteem by constantly encouraging, validating and supporting them to be their best selves.


The second component of our mission is to build a cooperative community. Through communal living on the cabin level, kids learn how to cooperate, share space and live with eleven bunkmates. There is tremendous value in the kind of group consensus decision making and collaboration.


The third rung, Tikkun Olam- A Partnership with Nature, emphasizes care and respect for Mother Earth. Tikkun Olam, Hebrew for “repair the world,” is a value we emphasize both on day hikes in Yosemite National Park as well as at Camp at our Farm & Garden. Through learning how to respect nature, kids come home feeling a greater sense of responsibility to care for the world around them.


Lastly, campers gain a greater sense of their own Jewish identity and spirituality by participating in daily Jewish rituals and programs designed to help them engage in our brand of joyous Judaism in nature. There is a venerable “buffet” of Judaism– opportunities and activities that help campers connect to something greater than themselves, but in ways that are meaningful to them on an individual level.


It is our sincere hope that every camper has felt the Mission already in this short time they’ve spent with us and that they come back for years to come to experience the Mission again and again.