Latest Updates from Camp  A Place to Call a Second Home

A Place to Call a Second Home

Our Chavurah campers led a heartfelt service Saturday morning as they prepare to say “good-bye” to camp as campers. 

By Becky & Nina
When you first sign up for camp you probably only knew the activities advertised and maybe a friend or sibling, but little did you know how much would be passed to you. From your friends to your staff, to Joe and Betty we all have been given memories, tradition, a place to call a 2nd home. Camp Harlam, enjoy everything this place has to offer on your last day. For this place has generations upon generations of legacy. Whether they are here, unknown, or have passed away every Harlamite has a legacy to be remembered.

Chavurah, as our journey as campers comes to an end it is time for us to give back all we have received to future campers just like the past has done for us. Let us continue to do great things together as we venture on, to the next chapter of camp, in honor of all the people who came before us.  We remember them in the mourner’s kaddish. 

By Alex, Paul, Lex & Simon 
Change. Everyone knows about it and handles it differently. From to bunks to renovated pools, to new birkat traditions, campers become counselors, counselors become unit heads and after that they move on but one thing that doesn’t change is friendship. From unexpected bonds to lifelong friends over the years, the four of us have become closer than we could ever imagine. I couldn’t think of life without them. We live, work and play as a bunk. We push each other outside our comfort zones and catch each other when we fall. People say traditions make camp, camp. But the people make the traditions. Camp Harlam, thank you for giving me the best summers of my life. Thank you for my best friends.

By Maddie & Tracy
Don’t capture the moment, let the moment capture you. Laugh all the time. Smile whenever you can, stay happy because Rah goes by fast. Along with many other quotes these two are written in the chavurah girls bathroom stalls. As our 7 weeks together are coming to an end, we’ve been dreading writing this speech because it’s really almost over. Although at first, we thought these quotes we’re just funny sayings written by past campers, they are now more meaningful as we look back on our time here at camp. From our first summer in Carmel girls 1 in 2012 to now in Chavurah, we thank camp for our special friendship that will last through our whole lives so, take in your final moments of summer 2019. Make the most of it because soon enough, you will be up here in your last 24 hours as a camper with your best friend by your side reading your last shabbat speech. As we reflect with silent prayer, we would like to end with a quote that we wrote together for campers to come.  (we share it here instead of writing it on the bathroom wall)

By Darya & Emma
Contrary to popular belief, cough drops don’t heal all of your problems. At camp we face challenges everyday that can make us feel uncomfortable or hurt. In those situations, being in an environment like this can help us push through difficulties faster. Having a camp support system, like having a shoulder to cry on or ranting to someone provides smoother path to healing. Also, the time you spend here frees you from the presences of home and school, allowing you to finally take a break. Putting your arms around each other and singing the same songs over and over again gives you a chance to let tensions go and feel free.

By Alma & Leah
For a while, we tried to write the perfect speech for our last Tefilah as campers. Not too cheesy, not too serious, just right. Then we realized at camp, we don’t have to be perfect. As we just sang the Mi Chamocha, our song of freedom, we reflect on the fact that we have the freedom within this community to make mistakes. Few places give us the freedom to be not only who we try to be, but who we really are. Every day we wake up to positive messages written in the bunk by chavurah campers before us. Things like “don’t let time go to waste” and “make this summer count”. Even the doors in the bathroom stalls tell us to cherish every moment. But part of being our true selves is knowing that it’s okay to have a bad day. That moments are allowed to go by un-cherished. It’s important to accept that not every minute of chavurah has to be the best minute of our lives, and by this point in the session, we understand that. And honestly, this realization has made our summer better.

So, appreciate the moment you can, and the time you have but know that its only human to sit back and watch moments go by without trying to hold on to all of them

By Emma & Remy
To my person,
This is my thank you letter to you. Thank you for sharing the most amazing memories with me. Thank you for the laughs, the tears, and everything in between. Most importantly, thank you for being my best friend. Remy, I will always cherish the memories we have in the community that brought us together. Although our time at camp has come to a pause, I know we will continue to make new memories. Without you, my camp experience wouldn’t have been the same. There are truly no words to describe how much our friendship mean so me. This isn’t the end, but only the start of a new chapter. So, thank you, for the most amazing summer of my life. You will always be my other half. I love you so much best friend. Rem and Em forever. Dear Camp, Harlam, thank you for giving me my best friend.

Dear Emma,
There really is no way to say it.  You are my whole world. I am beyond thankful to have grown up with you in such a special place like camp.  To have grown up sleeping in hammocks and making up dances, singing our hearts out and struggling on the walks to the village.  I’m so grateful to be part of the camp Harlam community with you. It almost feels unreal, like this really isn’t the end. And that’s because the truth is, it isn’t.  It doesn’t stop here. Our friendship goes far beyond the Kunkletown roads, and the Camp Harlam bubble. No matter what comes our way, I will always cherish our summers together.  So, thank-you for being the reason I cry as my last hours of being a camper come to an end. I love you so much Emma Aronowitz.
XOXO,
Remy

By Emily & Shayna
Everybody here can say they’ve gotten sick at least once at camp. Usually you feel down for a day or two. But after some trips to the mir’pah and time, you start to feel better and get back into the swing of camp, even though being sick at camp is the worst, you have your whole bunk on your side.

By Rachel L, Rachel W, & Lindsay
When it came time to create a structured prayer service, the kaddish was chosen as a prayer to remember those who have died. It was chosen because it does not mention death at all but reminds us to be grateful for the lives we have and appreciate how our lives are better because of those who were lost. For our last few days as campers we decided to reflect back on our lives and the good times we’ve had. In the years as campers we have made so many memories. The things we remember most is laughing on the porch late at night, facetime calls talking about all of camp goals, hanging out together during free swim or meeting new people together. These happy memories that we are left with is what we will remember most about camp, even after we have left. Which is exactly how we remember the people we have lost

By Julia & Esther
There are certain things about camp that make it the home we come back to each year. The friendships, yellow meal, color war and most importantly shabbat have lasted since first year at camp and continue to bring me back here each summer. From wishing my buddy a “shabbat shalom” in Carmel to loosing my voice at song session in Kineret. To dancing crazy at Rak Dan in Galil, and to waking up to the woods one last time our Chavurah summer…

Shabbat at camp has been an ongoing experience that we will cherish forever. Some things never change, like our yearly ritual of writing shabbat speeches together or while writing our speeches going off topic and joking around the whole time. As the session draws to a close, we think about taking these shabbat traditions with us when we celebrate shabbat at home. Although after closing day tomorrow we will no longer be campers, shabbat will remain a unique experience that will last for years to come. So, thank you Camp Harlam for strengthening our love for shabbat and for the many amazing summers you’ve given us.

By Charlie & Eli
Throughout our journey at Camp Harlam we have created many things…
Friendships that will never end
Great experiences that we will never forget
This speech
And an open, safe and diverse community

By Maya, Ariella & Laney
The people
The tables in the Chadar
The bunks
The trips
The pools
These are just a few of the things that have changed since we first started coming to camp. Camp is constantly changing, but over the years, we have changed as well.

When I first started in Sharon, I was not comfortable in my own skin. But this community here at camp has taught me to love myself despite my flaws, and to put myself out there. I’ve learned that I am the realest version of myself when I’m at camp and that is the best version I can be.

Throughout my time at camp I have realized how this is my family. Everyone gets upset and everyone goes through things but no matter how hard it gets someone will be by your side. Whether someone’s biggest problem is someone else’s smallest or someone else’s need is someone else’s want. Everyone treats everyone like family, and I know through all the ups and downs through this amazing roller coaster ride these people will be my forever’s.

When I came in Kineret, I was very reserved and I was afraid to branch out and do things out of my comfort zone, camp has taught me to try new things, talk to new people, and be the best version of myself that I can be. Now, I feel like I can turn around and have a conversation with anyone. Not only have I changed, but our chavurah community has changed as well, and we have really come together as a unit for our last summer as campers.

As our final summer draws to a close, we are reflecting on the ways camp has changed us. We have begun to think about what we want to give back to the place that has given us so much. We’re all going different directions, some of us will got to Israel, and some of us will find exciting opportunities elsewhere. But no matter how many miles apart we are we always find our way back home because we’re better together.

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