Five years ago, we welcomed alumna Rachel Dobbs Schwartz back “home” to Camp Ramah Darom as our Assistant Director. It was a testament to how much our Camp has matured over the years that we had hired our very first home-grown Assistant Director.
In her tenure, Rachel has been an extraordinary leader bringing passion, energy and creativity to our program and the whole Ramah Darom community. She has led initiatives to enhance staff training by developing an innovative Field Guide and professionalized the supervision and evaluation of all our activity specialists. She works tirelessly year-round to recruit staff, connect with new campers and bring Ramah Darom exceptional experiences directly to local communities throughout our region. And she is beloved by our campers and staff alike as the “rock-star” at the drums for Havdallah or lifting our spirits leading musical Tefillah.
It is with mixed emotions that I share the news that, at the conclusion of this summer, Rachel will become the new Director at Camp Ramah in the Poconos. We are bursting with pride that Ramah Darom has produced the newest Director in the Ramah Movement and thrilled that Rachel will be able to take her leadership to the next level. We are overflowing with gratitude for all that Rachel has done for Ramah Darom and we feel blessed that she will still be with us through August.
We will have plenty of time in the months to come to send Rachel off with adequate fanfare and appropriate expressions of appreciation. For now, please read Rachel’s words below and join me in congratulating her on this very exciting professional opportunity. Mazal Tov!
A Note from Rachel
Dear Ramah Darom Family,
Last week, we celebrated Purim, which reminds us of two different sides of the human condition. We are reminded of the moments in our lives when we feel ונהפוך הוא, when everything is turned upside down, and we feel as if all of the things we once thought were true are thrown into question. On the other hand, Purim also reminds us of the resiliency of the human spirit and the importance of partnership, trust and community, in highlighting the blessings in our lives, and the opportunities that lie before us to make positive change in the world.
These last 5 years, working as the Assistant Director at Camp Ramah Darom, have been an absolute blessing for me and for my family. I have learned a tremendous amount, I have been challenged and I have made amazing friends and have incredible colleagues. It has been a privilege, an honor and a labor of love to serve the southeast Jewish community for these years. I am grateful for every moment that I have had working for Ramah Darom.
Over the last several weeks, I have had the pleasure of meeting and spending time with the Camp Ramah in the Poconos community. I have been overwhelmed by the positive energy, enduring support and excitement for the future. The Poconos קהילה, much like Darom’s, is blessed with a talented and dedicated staff who believe in the mission of מחנות רמה, to inspire commitment to and engagement in Jewish life.
I am honored to have the opportunity to continue my career in Ramah Camping and am grateful for the strong partnerships between these organizations which have supported me in this change.
I am incredibly excited about this new role as Director at Camp Ramah in the Poconos, which I will begin in the fall. I am also equally filled with immense gratitude which stems from knowing that my time working for Ramah Darom has prepared me for this role.
Thank you, Ramah Darom. Thank you for trusting me with your children and your families. Thank you for your camaraderie, your enduring spirit of learning and your willingness to let your guard down and just have fun. Thank you for the laughter, the connections, the friendships and all of the memories.
With love, gratitude and blessings for the continued health of our community,
Rachel Dobbs Schwartz