Working Directly With Kids

The positions outlined below describe our counselor and specialist jobs. Staff in these roles spend all day with campers, taking care of their physical and emotional needs and running fun, engaging and educational activities. Dates are June 3 – August 6, 2021 unless otherwise noted.

Kid Specialists


(65 positions: entry level salary $2250, more DOE.) Counselors care for and live with children as role models ensuring the physical and emotional well being of their campers. As facilitators of the camper experience, counselors strive to raise self-esteem and foster the bunk group dynamic by actively participating in all camp activities offered by specialists, including: ropes course, backpacking, arts and crafts, Jewish programs, and more, as well as creating programs of their own. Excellent communication skills, childcare experience, and love of outdoors are essential. Ability to live in a cabin with others, eat meals in a large, noisy dining hall, address stressful situations appropriately in a fast-paced, interactive environment required. Counselors work most sessions as a Bunk Counselor (with a co-counselor in a 12 camper cabin) but may also spend one or more sessions as a Unit Counselor supporting multiple bunks. LGT and WFA certifications are encouraged.

Inclusion Counselor

5 positions, entry level salary $2250, more DOE.) Same job as “Counselor” but working specifically with special needs campers to provide additional support. Communicate with counselors, specialists, and supervisors throughout the day regarding accommodations and modifications needed for campers with special needs, provide those services whenever possible. Coach other staff on how to best support campers. The primary focus may be campers with special needs but it is not limited to supporting that camper, full counselor job description also applies. Expertise working with variety of special needs strongly preferred.

Specialist & Counselor In-Training (SCIT) Program Staff

(4 positions: $285/wk, more DOE. June 3 – July 8 ONLY.) Train and supervise approximately 30 Counselors In-Training and 6-8 Specialists In-Training. Lead workshops, coordinate schedules, liaison with department heads, and participate in all SCIT activities. Supervision/teaching experience required. Supervision, teaching (formal or informal), and Tawonga Unit Head experience helpful.

Teen Leadership Institute (TLI) Staff

(4 positions: $285/wk, more DOE. Training dates June 3 – 12 and program dates July 11 – August 6 ONLY.) Train and supervise approximately 24 teens in an immersive leadership training program. Serve as a facilitator of the participants experience. The program takes teens and staff on an extended backpacking trip into Yosemite, volunteering in Yosemite National Park and through a course of service work based at camp. Staff must be able to support teens both on and off site, teaching daily curriculum, including but not limited to skill development, Jewish text and other discussions. Must be at least 21 years old and have 1 year working with kids at Tawonga; LGT, WFR, driving certificate may be required. Excellent communication skills, teaching experience, capacity to do physical labor, and community development knowledge are essential.


(8-9 positions: $2250, more DOE.) Counselor on special assignment. Provide care for children of staff at camp. Must be responsible, warm, loving, creative, and flexible. Experience with children preferred.

Program Specialists

Program Assistant

(2 positions: entry level salary $2250, more DOE.) Lead creative and Jewish programming. Ability to teach dance, sports, group games and yoga preferred. Lead sweat lodges, coordinate camper floats and assist Program Director with all camp programs and A/V. Current LGT certification preferred.

Drama Specialist

(1 position: entry level salary $2250, more DOE.) Plan and direct two all-camp productions, facilitate drama games to help children and teens express themselves and explore communication. Must have 3 years college level drama courses or equivalent.

Dance Specialist

(1 position: entry level salary $2250, more DOE.) Work with the Programming Department to offer dance activities to campers of all ages. Foster positive associations with artistic expression and body image through dance and movement activities. Lead higher level dance electives for interested campers. Assist in general programming needs for camp with greater department of programming.

Waterfront Staff

(5 positions: entry level salary $2250, more DOE.) Lifeguard at beautiful Olympic-sized pool, and small lake. Create and lead fun water games at the pool for campers. Hike with groups to river areas as safety monitor and lifeguard. Current lifeguard certification required. Must be able to see and supervise participants in water areas. One Waterfront Director position available. Make schedules and supervise Waterfront program and staff. LGT certification required; experience teaching lessons and WSI preferred.

Arts and Crafts Staff

(4 positions: entry level salary $2250, more DOE.) Instruct: tie-dye, candle making, copper enameling, ceramics (hand building and electric wheel), silk painting, Jewish crafts, print making, lanyards, and more. Organize and clean all supplies and equipment daily. Other duties: distribute pack-out supplies, operate kiln firings, and participate in unit activities. Teaching experience helpful.

Jewish Program Assistant

(2 positions: $2250, more DOE. Jewish education experience preferred)Work with Unit Heads, counselors and specialty staff to provide creative Jewish programming. Assist the Jewish Program Director with camp-wide Shabbat programs, weekly Torah services and Kabbalat Shabbat programs. Create and lead jewish programs for campers. Creative programming, storytelling, meditation, yoga, art, and music skills are all assets.


(3 positions: entry level salary $2250, significantly more DOE.) Lead and teach American and Hebrew folk songs in camp-wide sing-a-longs (300 people) after meals. Sing campers to sleep and offer campfire programs for single bunks. Run or assist with all camp programs such as Havdallah, each session’s drama production, camper talent show, etc. Must play guitar, have prior song-leading experience, and ability to learn how to operate amplified sound systems.

Wilderness & Adventure Specialists

Wilderness Leader

(15+ positions: $3025 based on rotations and certifications. Additional training May 27 – June 2) All rotations require that you be at least 21 years old with current Lifeguard and Wilderness First Responder or WEMT certification (possible reimbursement for certification courses). Experience with children and prior backpacking experience essential; natural history, environmental education, challenge course facilitation, and Judaic knowledge helpful. Wilderness Staff rotate through one or more of the following programs throughout the summer:

    • Backpacking Trip Leader: Lead bunk groups of 12 campers and 2 counselors on one and two night backpacking trips in the Sierra Mountains. Drive vans, lead hikes, set up camp, cook dinner on a camping stove, supervise swimming in mountain lakes and streams, teach LNT ethics and lead nature programming. Must be able to lift and carry 40 pound packs. Keep the group safe and happy, helping them bond with each other and with Mother Nature.
    • Teen Adventure Quest Leader: Co-lead a group of teens on a multi-week van trip through California or the Pacific Northwest. Lead backpacking trip, drive vans, manage cooking and cleaning with teens, lead programming and group building, and interface with professional outfitters for rafting, kayaking, rock climbing and surfing.
    • Adventure Challenge Course Facilitator: Facilitate groups through low and high elements at our challenge course and climbing tower. Prior ropes course facilitation experience and rock climbing/belaying experience helpful.
    • Naturalist: Engage children in creative activities to foster nature appreciation and environmental education. Lead day hikes, river rock hops, fire building, orienteering, and storytelling, as well as garden-based programming in our organic garden. Implement traditional Tawonga programs and create new activities to engage campers about natural history, ecology, Jewish connections to nature, and Native American culture.

Challenge Course Facilitator

(1 position: $2500, more DOE.) Lead cabin groups through low and high elements on our Adventure Challenge Course to build self-esteem and teamwork. Training provided. Teach belaying and maintain a physically and emotionally safe environment. Excellent leadership and facilitation skills required; prior ropes course facilitation experience preferred, and rock climbing or belaying experience useful.


(2 positions: salary $2500, more DOE.) Engage children in creative activities to foster nature appreciation and environmental education. Lead day hikes, river rock hops, fire building, orienteering, and storytelling. Implement traditional Tawonga programs and create new activities to engage campers about natural history, ecology, Jewish connections to nature, and Native American culture. Lifeguard certification required. WFA/R preferred. Dynamic stage presence and BA (or 1 year field exp.) preferred.

Staff and camper smiling

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