FAQs | Camp Ramah Northern California


General Questions

What does our Hebrew name Ramah Galim mean?

Ramah Galim means “Ramah of the Waves,” and it refers to both our unique spot on the coast of Northern California as well our goal to have Camp Ramah in Northern California make positive waves in the surrounding Jewish community and beyond. How will be accomplish that? The experience of being at Camp Ramah in Northern California transforms lives and relationships, and builds future Jewish leaders and partnerships.

Why do we need another Ramah camp in California?

The Northern California Jewish community is the third largest in the United States. There are over 40,000 Jewish children of the age eligible to attend Jewish camp (between the ages of 8-18) in the Greater Bay Area alone. The operating Northern California Jewish camps, Tawonga, Newman, and Maccabi Sports Camp together serve just over 2,000 kids per summer. Based on these numbers and research studies of Northern California as well as numerous testimonials from families, there is an unmet need for Jewish camp experiences in the Bay Area, let alone in the Western Region as a whole. Furthermore, the specialty camp experience at Camp Ramah in Northern California in ocean exploration, performing arts, and outdoor adventure offers a unique program that will serve a different population of youth who might already be passionate about one of our areas of focus or desire to develop a new skill set in one of these specialty areas.

Our sister camp, Ramah California in Ojai, has served thousands of campers since 1956, and is nearly at capacity. We want to build an unique specialty Ramah camp in Northern California to make the transformative experience and lifelong relationships of Jewish camp accessible to hundreds more campers every summer.

Who can attend Camp Ramah in Northern California?

Our camp primarily serves the Western region of the United States, including all of California, Washington, Oregon, Nevada, Colorado, and Arizona, as well as Mexico. There is no line of demarcation between the region for Ramah California in Ojai and Camp Ramah in Northern California. Rather, we encourage families to choose the camp that best meets their child’s needs and interests. If you live outside the Western region and would like to attend our camp, please contact our Director, Sarah Shulman at sarah@ramahnorcal.org for more information.

How can I find out more information about Camp Ramah in Northern California’s program and staff?

Families who attend one of our information sessions or Ramah Beach Days at Monterey Bay this year will have an opportunity to meet our year-round staff, Ramah alumni, and other Ramah families and to learn more about our programs. Also, feel free to Contact Us directly with further questions or to request more information. “Like” us on our Facebook page, join our Constant Contact email list or ask about volunteer opportunities by emailing info@ramahnorcal.org.

Meeting Camper Needs

My child has special needs, can they come to camp?

We try our best to make sure that camp is the place for every child. Please contact us regarding your family’s specific concerns and we will do everything possible to ensure a successful summer for your child at Camp Ramah in Northern California. If you are interested in our one week Tikvah program for campers with special needs, click here for more information.

Can my son or daughter stay for more than one session?

Yes! Campers are encouraged to sign up for multiple sessions. Such campers will receive a multi-session discount and have the opportunity to engage in more than one of the specialty tracks if they choose to do so.

What is the food like at camp?

We strive to meet the dietary needs of all campers with healthy food options. All food at camp is prepared in our kosher facility with kosher supervision. We offer a diverse, healthy menu that includes lots of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and protein. Meat is served several times per week with vegetarian options at all meat meals.

Is camp able to accommodate my son or daughter’s food allergies?

Camp Ramah in Northern California can accommodate many food allergies. Our kitchen is entirely peanut and tree-nut free. We also are able to accommodate lactose intolerance and certain wheat allergies as well.

Are immunizations required?

All children attending Camp Ramah in Northern California should have received the full complement of routine vaccinations as recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP). While individual parents may choose to defer the vaccination of their children, for Camp Ramah this is not an issue of individual rights and choice, but an issue of public health and policy. The routine vaccination of all campers is an important public health matter especially in the confined environment of a sleep away summer camp. Campers without all routine vaccinations will NOT be accepted.

How will my camper and I stay in touch?

We strongly encourage parents and campers to be in touch throughout the session, and we know how much campers love getting mail (and parents, too)! Email can be sent to campers via our CampInTouch service. Camp is also a special time to enjoy the tradition of old-fashioned letter-writing. Regular and electronic mail are delivered daily to campers during rest hour. Campers do not usually call home or receive calls from home except in special circumstances, but all campers do write letters home.


How do campers get to camp?

Many Northern California families prefer to drive their campers to camp. We also offer  bus transport from a few Northern California locations. Check our website in January for updated bus transportation options.

If your camper is traveling to Camp Ramah in Northern California from out of the area, he or she should fly into San Jose International airport. Upon arrival, our staff will meet your child at the airport and transport them to camp. We publish a list of recommended flights from major cities in the Western region. For these flights we do guarantee that a Ramah staff member will meet your child at the gate on arrival days and escort your child there on departure days.

Financial Assistance

What if we need financial assistance to help our child attend Camp Ramah in Northern California?

Cost should not deter any family from considering sending their child to camp. Camp Ramah in Northern California offers generous financial assistance. Please contact our Director, Sarah Shulman, at sarah@ramahnorcal.org or 415-688-4572 to receive the necessary forms.

Please note: The financial assistance committee has a policy in place that an award offer cannot be made to campers who have applied to and been accepted at another Ramah Camp if the resulting award will cause the camper not to attend the other Ramah camp. This policy is in place so as not to take campers away from their experience at another camp.