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Hebrew Academy of Five Towns & Rockaway
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Hillel 2020

June 15, 2020
Dear Hillel Day Camp Family,

As you know, Hillel Day Camp is the premier Jewish day camp experience on Long Island. After an amazing summer in 2019, we had even bigger and better plans for Hillel 2020, which our staff has been working on and planning for almost a year.
Sadly, the last few months have impacted every aspect of our lives in ways we could not have anticipated. In the face of new guidelines provided to us just last week, our staff has been working tirelessly, determined to adjust the Hillel Day Camp you know and love into a program that fully complies with these new guidelines, keeping the health and safety of our campers and staff our top priority.
In the few days since we reached out with our proposed adjustments to the camp program, we have heard your feedback, adjusted some policies, and spoken to many of you one on one as well. We held a webinar to help explain the new format we were working on and answered any questions you might have had.
We held multiple meetings with our medical advisers to review all the new guidelines and had meetings with our upper staff and school administration. We spent countless hours reviewing the new protocols and devising a plan of action for this summer.

After careful consideration, we are all truly heartbroken that we must announce that Hillel Day Camp summer 2020 will not open. As we analyzed the multitude of restrictions and recommendations put forth by the state, we have come to the conclusion that we cannot offer our campers the type of program they have come to expect.
Safety and security has and will always be the main concern that has driven our decision. With all the uncertainty that surrounds our community, we felt it best not to risk the chance of our most precious treasures, our children.
We are aware this decision will be difficult for many of our families who were planning to rely on us, but we hope you appreciate how thorough we were in our decision-making process. Although we will not be together this summer, you can expect to hear from us shortly. Look out for the Hillel duck as you never know where or when he may show up. In the coming months you will also be receiving exciting news and announcements, and registration information for Hillel 2021.

We will be issuing refunds to our families. Please email with your child/ children’s name and choose one of the following methods.
  1. HAFTR families may apply their camp refund toward HAFTR tuition for the 2020-2021 academic year.
  2. All Hillel families may apply their camp refund to the Hillel 2021 season, and lock in this year’s rate for next year.
  3. You may request that a refund be issued in the form of a check. Checks will be mailed within approximately 30 days.
We wish all of our Hillel families health and safety in these unprecedented times.
Evan Leibowitz, Director, Hillel Day Camp
Ari Solomon, Executive Director, HAFTR