We are pleased to share our first of 10 Project Spotlights for 2013. We hope you enjoy reading about the exciting work The Gendler Grapevine Project supported in 2013. Make sure to link to each camp’s practical proposal to see how you can implement this project at your camp, organization, or even home.

-Emily Loeb

Executive Director


Camp Chi, a summer camp of the Jewish Community Center of Chicago, used their grant from the Gendler Grapevine Project to dramatically reduce their use of paper plates, plastic utensils, and polystyrene cups.


A camper helps sort dishes

The project has been very successful. They implemented it by using real dishes, silverware, and cups at meals that take place in the picnic grove outside of their dining hall. This change in practice led to a dramatic decrease in the amount of disposable paper goods they used at camp.


Campers sign under a banner stating how much the camp reduced their waste through the new reusable dishware project

By highlighting the environmental impact of this change in and around the dining hall, campers learned about the importance and value of being stewards of the environment. Furthermore, a small group of counselors led an experimental study throughout the summer about bal taschit and the impact of waste on the environment. This was implemented during time on Shabbat set aside for exploration of Jewish values. Through these activities, campers made the connection between this Jewish value and what they were doing at camp. Using this project as an example, campers were engaged in considering how they can incorporate a similar change in their lives at home.

For a step-by-step guide on how you can create this project at your camp or organization, click here.