Throughout the month that we were at TY we did the typical summer camp things all camps do. We went swimming, climbed the rock wall, and did arts and crafts. However, that was more to our daily schedule. The counselors were divided into tikun (fixing/ rectification) groups. The campers were also divided into the tikun groups based on what they had the most interest in. Some of the groups were human trafficking, global poverty, anti-Semitism, and LGBTQ+ rights. The group I was in was gun safety, the same one I was in as a camper. My co-counselor and I led many peulas (activities) about gun safety where we informed campers about many issues. We tried our best to be unbiased and gave many sides to the issue. Luckily our campers had different opinions from each other. This added a lot of interesting conversations and debates to our group which the campers talked about in and outside of the designated time for gun safety. Towards the end of camp we went to Washington D.C. where everyone met with people who focused on their area of study. My group specifically met with the NRA, Brady Campaign, Senator Manchin’s representatives, and Senator Murphy’s representatives. Given the amount of time we had to prepare for these meetings I was incredibly proud of the introspective questions my campers asked and how much knowledge they had acquired in the short time that we had. I knew that the reason the campers knew so much was because my co-counselor and I spent many hours preparing lessons and teaching the campers. Learning is not always the most exciting thing, however given the work and effort I put in I was able to give the campers a positive and impactful experience similar to what my counselors gave me. I am proud of myself for succeeding in my goal.
Irene Shayna Zharnitsky
Class of 2019