Who are Mosh's counselors and how are they trained?
The vast majority of our counselors and technical staff grew up at Mosh and are coming back to serve as counselors, in order to create the same magical experience for the next generation of kids. That means we’ve known them for years, know which positions and teams would work best for them, and how to best support them. Counselors who grew up at Mosh went through our leadership programs in high school, including a summer-long counselor-in-training program. Every summer all staff go through a comprehensive 12-day long staff training program.
During staff training, counselors learn about and practice the need to take care of the whole child - their physical and emotional wellbeing, and their social and intellectual needs. Counselors go through, among others, sessions on:
Special certifications for lifeguards, waterfront activities, and ropes course operators
Camper care and supervision
How to support homesick kids
Guiding positive behavior
Restorative justice practices
Before the summer, you will be asked to complete extensive questionnaires about your child’s health, hobbies, strengths, difficulties, etc. Information from these forms, as well as from follow-up conversations, will be compiled and discussed with your child’s counselors so that they’re ready to take care of your child and craft their summer experience.
During the camp session, there are five summer directors (Mazkirut) supporting and supervising counselors, following up to make sure needs of individual campers are being met, helping counselors resolve issues with group dynamics, and continuously adapting and impriving our educational content.
Crafting age appropriate education
How do you ensure campers' health and safety?
Camp Moshava is licensed by the State of Maryland and accredited by the American Camp Association, the leading authority in the promotion of camp safety and quality. That means that we follow hundreds of standards ranging from sanitation to camper/staff ratio, to quality of programming. On our last accreditation day-long visit and assessment, we passed with a 100% score on all standards. That’s because at Mosh, the health and safety of campers is not only our #1 priority, it is also everyone’s responsibility; from the group counselors and camp directors, to our kitchen staff, to our on-site nurses.
Our level of staff certification in First Aid, CPR and AED exceeds both state and ACA regulations. Staff with additional appropriate certification are supervising during activitites such as canoeing, tubing, low ropes and swimming.
Our BRAND NEW camp health center is staffed with 2 nurses (RNs) at all times. If the nurse determines additional evaluation is needed, they may contact one of our consulting physicians and/or they might be sent to see a doctor at the nearby Patient First clinic or Upper Chesapeake Emergency Department (15 minutes away).
Our security assessment was most recently done by the head of security for The Associated - the Baltimore Federation, and have worked with them to review and improve our safety and security protocols, which all staff learn and practice during staff training. We are in touch with local emergency services in town (Emergency Services Manager, Fire Department, Sheriff's Office) throughout the year, and meet with them before each camp season to make sure they’re aware of the details of our operations for that summer.
What are the sleeping arrangements at camp?
Campers are housed by grade and gender identity. Younger campers (grades 3 - 7) sleep in cabins, while older campers (grades 8-12) are housed in platform tents. Though the camp is designed to be rustic in nature, the cabins and tents are powered with electricity. The cabin area and tent area each have their own bathhouses with well lit paths to and from the living spaces. We also offer the option of all gender housing to older campers who identify as gender fluid, genderqueer, trans and allies. Campers are housed according to their gender identity and where they feel most comfortable. All-gender bathrooms are available at the older campers' bathhouse and in the health center (marp).
What sort of communications can I expect to get from camp?
The Mosh blog is updated a few times a week, and it is the main window into camp activities’ descriptions and photos. It will give you good insight into what your child has been doing and what Mosh and Habonim are all about. In addition, Mosh staff are always available to talk with you when your child is at camp, and messages are answered within the same day.
The most successful camp experiences occur when a child is fully immersed in camp. Therefore, most direct communication with campers will happen in writing, via old-fashioned snail mail. Parents can also send emails, which we print and deliver at the same time that mail is delivered.
What is the food like? Can you accomodate special diets?
Kids are active all the time at camp and they get hungry! That’s why we have three meals and two snacks a day. We know how important food is for the wellbeing of campers and we make sure that it feels home-like - comforting and accessible. Food is kid friendly and there are always vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free options. We serve fresh vegetables and/or fruit at every meal.
Here’s what one day’s menu at camp looked like this summer:
Breakfast: Scrambled eggs, cantalope, yogurt, cereal, and cottage cheese.
Lunch: Chicken nuggets/vegan nuggets, french fries, sauteed spinach, watermelon and salad bar.
Afternoon Snack: Apples.
Dinner: Burrito Bar with refried beans, guacamole, cheese, sour cream, salsa and chopped tomatos plus salad bar.
Bedtime Snack: Chocolate cake and milk.
If your child is a picky eater (and many kids are), there are always multiple options to replace or supplement the meal, and counselors and kitchen staff will assist them in choosing, and prepare their meal. Options for picky eaters may include pasta, SunButter and Jelly sandwich, cheese quesadilla, and more. If you’re worried that your child is especially picky, let us know. We will work with you before the summer to make sure that we are aware of their needs and that our pantry is stocked with the food they will eat.
Our kitchen staff is certified and trained to handle food sensitivities and special diets, and we work with parents to make sure that special diets menus are varied and contain the dishes and food items that the camper is used to from home. We have experience with and can accommodate gluten free diets, nut-allergy diets, diets for campers with diabetes, etc.
Mosh is completely peanut free.
What is your policy on electronics at camp?
Mosh is a “screen-free” camp experience! Did you know that American teens spend over 7 ½ hours a day using electronic devices? Camp is a great time to take a break from the screens and connect with new and old friends face to face! Please leave all electronics at home! These devices have a way of getting lost or broken at camp. The only electronics allowed at Mosh are screen-less music players (e.g. iPod shuffles, CD players) and digital cameras.
When can we visit camp?
We welcome all families to visit camp on Visitors’ Day on Sunday, July 7, 2019 from 12pm–4pm! Parents of two week campers and Nitzanimot are expected to take their children home with them at the end of Visitor’s Day. We encourage our two week campers to extend their stay to three or four weeks!
You will receive details during the summer regarding what time to arrive at camp on Visitors’ Day. Please bring a kosher picnic lunch to share with your chanichimot (camper).
Please remember that we are a KOSHER camp. Sodas will be sold, as well as the camp photo and a variety of Mosh souvenirs. There will be a short presentation, the pool will be open for your enjoyment, and we will offer a choice of activities including softball, Israeli dancing and a short tiyul (hike).
How does Mosh accomodate diverse campers?
Habonim Dror Camp Moshava is a safe space for children to learn and grow. We believe that a thriving community is one that embraces and celebrates diverse identities -- age, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, nationality, religion, ability and socioeconomic status.
Known in the Jewish camping world as a leader in LGBTQ inclusion, Camp Mosh received the highest rating on the Jewish Organization Equality Index for LGBTQ inclusion in 2012. Mosh was also the first Jewish camp to offer
All Gender housing and bathroom options starting in 2017.
Our programming seeks to appreciate the value that each camper brings to camp-because of the individual, the community is stronger, because of the community, the individual is stronger. Racial Justice Night, Gender Empowerment Evening, queer kids club and Habonim Dror's positive masculinity curriculum are just a few examples of how we infuse the value of "shivyon erech ha'adam", the worth of all human beings, into our daily life at camp.
Our Melavimot (inclusion coordinators) work with parents, campers and staff to make sure we are meeting our campers where they are. Programs like Asepha Klalit (our weekly community meeting), our inclusion specialists, and the
gender inclusive Hebrew we use are some of the ways we empower campers to be their truest selves!
We welcome all campers and families. We know that new experiences can be difficult for some, and we encourage you to
contact us if you'd like to discuss how to make camp a rewarding and optimal experience for your child.
How will my child get to camp?
Bus transportation is provided to and from Silver Spring, Baltimore and the New York City areas, free of charge at the beginning and end of the four and three-week sessions. Two-week campers will be picked up by family on Visitors' Day. Five-week campers will be brought to camp on Visitors’ Day. Nitzanimot are brought to and from camp by parent/guardians.
An email will be sent out in May to provide specific details about transportation for that summer. Parents and guardians tell us how their camper will be getting to camp by completing the CampInTouch Transportation Form.
If you are arranging your own transportation or if your camper is arriving by plane, please contact
Madatz: Bus transportation for Madatz will be provided to and from Silver Spring and Baltimore. An email with additional information will be sent in May.
What medical forms need to be filled out for my child to attend camp?
In order to provide the best medical care for your children we need all forms to be completed and submitted by May 1, 2020 to give adequate time for the camp nurses to review the information.
Please email email Abby (firstname.lastname@example.org), fax us or mail in your forms to our Adminstrative Office.
Physician Form - The ACA medical form found in CampMinder is the only form we will accept (also available below). We can not accept other medical exam forms.
Proof of Insurance- Please submit a copy of your insurance card- front and back.
Health History- This form is found only in Campminder in the forms and documents section and can only be completed online.
If your camper will be taking prescription OR over-the-counter medication at camp, these forms must be submitted:
Medical Authorization Form
Daily Medication Form
All camper medications, vitamins, supplements are filled with Paradise Professional Pharmacy. Once you have submitted your camper’s medical forms, the pharmacy will contact you directly to review the prescriptions. Exceptions will be made on a case by case basis so as not to create a financial burden for our camp families. These exceptions must be arranged with the pharmacy and the Mosh nurse.
PLEASE NOTE: If your child requires a specific brand or manufacturer of medication, please have the doctor write the brand/manufacturer into the prescription. Otherwise, your camper’s medication may be filled with a generic version if it is available.
You can reach the Pharmacy at (410) 744-5959. The camp nurses will be available beginning in June at email@example.com.
What age group will my child be in?
Nitzanimot - Entering 3rd grade
Amelim - Entering 4th/5th grade
Chotrimot - Entering 6th/7th grade
Solelimot - Entering 8th grade
Bonimot - Entering 9th grade
Bogrimot - Entering 10th grade
Rising 11th graders attend one of two national programs offered:
Madatz (Madrichimot Tzirim) - Young counselors in leadership training. Entering 12th grade