What Does Being a “Summer Sister” Mean at Camp Pembroke?
Summer sisters: A term used to describe the lifelong friends made at Camp Pembroke.
Ask any camper or alum about Camp Pembroke, and within the first few minutes she will be talking about the unique sisterhood she shared at Camp Pembroke. It’s more than friendship, it’s more than camp friends, it’s a deep connection created between sisters, and one that continues to throughout a lifetime.
At Camp Pembroke, our all-girls Jewish overnight camp, we foster sisterhood intentionally all summer long.
Our Big Sister-Little Sister Program
At the beginning of first session we assign Big Sisters, and the Big Sisters design a scavenger hunt to reveal who they are to their Little Sister(s). This relationship continues all summer long with Big Sisters checking-in on their Little Sisters, stopping by their cabin to say goodnight, eating picnic lunch together, and so much more.
Mixed-age seating at every meal
Rather than sitting by bunk, we assign campers of all ages to sit together at meals. Table assignments change every few weeks, enabling campers to continually create connections across all age groups.
Older campers lead events that bring the camp together
Our 9th and 10th grade campers lead our biggest camp events, College Night and Color War. During these events, older campers mentor younger campers and lead team-building exercises that enhance that feeling of sisterhood.
Supportive conversations about self-esteem and becoming our whole selves
Our “S-Team Project” for our eldest campers provides an engaging series of speakers, activities and discussion groups exploring topics relevant to today’s Jewish young women. This is the age when we want our campers to bond over what it means to be a strong Jewish woman, and how to bring that forward into their everyday lives.
Dancing and singing our hearts out every Friday night during Shabbat
When we celebrate Shabbat, we do it as a joyous sisterhood. Campers spontaneously join arms during our special Shabbat services outdoors in the Pine Grove, and continue singing and dancing with our sisters all night long. Shabbat is a ‘Brokie favorite: even our staff don’t want to miss any part of our special Shabbat!
While we design all of these supportive elements, Summer Sisterhood organically comes alive every single summer at Pembroke.
Camp Pembroke is a place where girls walk hand in hand through camp, where we don’t have worry about what boys might think, or have to dress for others. (To us, the perfect summer wardrobe includes baggy t-shirts, socks with crocs, and hair scrunchies…and our summer sisters totally agree!) It’s a place where we enthusiastically cheer on each others’ successes, even when it is not our own.
Summer Sisters are friends created in just three to seven weeks, who are closer than someone with whom you spend all year. We live “10 for 2,” counting down the days until we are back at camp… and when we return, it’s as if no time has passed between us at all.