Five Receive Summer Camp Scholarships

[by Phyllis Shaikun]

Taking part in an overnight Jewish summer camping experience is a right of passage for many children. The benefits of making new friends, developing new interests and strengthening their Jewish identity are invaluable, but not all families can afford the cost of sending their children to camp. To help families overcome that obstacle, the families and friends of Laura Cohen and Miriam Fine as well as Kim and Stuart Frankenthal have put children first by creating scholarships to make it possible for them to have a Jewish camping experience.

The Laura K. Cohen Camp Scholarship goes to Jennifer and Rebecca Davis; The Miriam Fine Beber Camp Memorial Scholarship goes to Alayna and Hunter Borowick; and the Frankenthal Family Camp Ramah Scholarship goes to Tyler Levy.


Jennifer and Rebecca Davis
Jennifer and Rebecca Davis are an awesome twosome – smart, energized and looking forward to taking part in activities at Camp Nageela Midwest for the second year this summer. An award they have received from the Laura K. Cohen Camp Scholarship Fund of the Jewish Community of Louisville’s Foundation for Planned Giving, will ensure that the girls, both seventh-grade straight-A Honor roll students at Highland Middle School, will have the opportunity to do just that.

Laura Cohen so loved the time she spent at Jewish overnight camps that when she passed away, her friends and family created an endowment in her name to help ensure that children in our Jewish community have access to similar experiences at camps that are kosher, Shabbat-observant and Zionistic.

Jennifer and Rebecca were thrilled with their camp last year and cannot wait to return. They were especially happy because they got to spend time with other young Orthodox girls, something they cannot do in Louisville. They feel connected to Judaism – it is a part of them and keeps them rooted. Camp becomes a logical extension of their religious practices.

Their typical camp day begins with davening, singing and dancing, horseback riding and being with peers from Texas, Michigan, Missouri, New York and Israel for other activities. Counselors keep in touch with them throughout the year via e-mails sent most weeks before Shabbat, and campers and counselors spend two weekends together during the year (one in February and one in December at the in Marshall, IN, campgrounds).

If they had the chance to speak to Laura Cohen’s family and friends, the girls agreed they would thank them for their generosity and assure them they enjoy camp as much as she did. Their mother, Myrle Davis, was surprised to learn that she was a friend of Laura’s children while they were growing up. “We want to thank everyone for this opportunity,” she said. “Camp means so much to the girls. There are few their age who share their same religious beliefs, so it means the world to them to be together. The scholarship is a tremendous help.”

Alayna and Hunter Borowick
Alayna and Hunter Borowick are recipients of the 2010 Miriam Fine Beber Camp Memorial Scholarship, which was created by her family in 2006 to help ensure that Jewish children in our community can participate in a Jewish overnight summer camp experience. This will be Alayna’s second summer and Hunter’s third at Beber, and they have been anticipating their return since camp ended last year. In fact, last summer the Walden School students (Hunter is in the fifth grade and Alayna in third) were supposed to be at Beber for just two weeks, but they called their parents and asked to stay the full month.

“We love it,” says Alayna, an animated nine-year-old whose favorite activities are too numerous to mention. She is used to being busy at home too and participates in gymnastics, runs cross country and track, plays the bass and piano, is learning to play the guitar and even does some modeling on the side. Hunter plays baseball and is an accomplished musician on the bass, piano, drums and guitar. He plays with the band “Unleashed,” which recently played in the Rockin’ for Kids benefit and collected more than $3,000 to benefit the Kosair Hospital’s music therapy program.

Their dad, Richard, is grateful to the Fine family and thrilled that Beber provides his children with a sense of freedom and independence along with great structure. He notes that camp allows the children to become Jewishly involved with peers from all over. Newcomers are immediately involved since they are hooked-up with pen pals who are “in the know” before they even get to camp. “Walden is not a Jewish school,” says Alayna, “so I’m happy we have the chance to be with lots of other Jewish kids over the summer.” Hunter likes having the chance to participate in more religious activities with his friends at Beber and stresses that all campers and counselors are Jewish.

Tyler Levy
Tyler Levy is the recipient of the 2010 Frankenthal Family Camp Ramah Scholarship. A rising senior at Jeffersontown High School, he is excited about receiving his senior ring on May 7. He also is looking forward to a “whole new beginning” at Camp Ramah in Eagle River, WI. Kim and Stuart Frankenthal and their family established the scholarship fund in 2007 because they understand the value of a Jewish camping experience.

Although camping is nothing new to Tyler, who attended Jewish Community Center camps for many years and spent several very happy summers at Camp Livingston, being on his own and far away sounds like an exotic new adventure. While he worked very hard learning Hebrew while preparing for his bar mitzvah, he knows he will gain even more proficiency by being in a place where the language is spoken on a daily basis.

He has a black belt (Shaolin Kempo) in Karate (which he has been doing since kindergarten) and thinks he might even be able to share his expertise with his fellow campers.

An avid reader, Tyler volunteers his time at the library near his home after school and hopes one day to land a fulltime job there. His mother, Sheila, calls Tyler a “foodie” who, among other things, likes to read cookbooks and has a collection of restaurant menus. He is close to his family and treasures the time they spend together. He maintains that “Life is a Gift from God” and he doesn’t intend to waste a minute of it.

You could make a Jewish camping experience a reality for youngsters in our community by establishing an endowment with the Jewish Community of Louisville’s Foundation for Planned Giving. Please contact Alan Engel at 451-8840, by email at or on our website by clicking here.

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