There are hundreds of them around the world, with tens of thousands of campers. When the sun is at its zenith in every major city and on every continent, the summer camps of Chabad shine their light on yet another generation of Jewish children.

The Gan Israel camps span a diversity of cultures, languages and regions, extending from Alaska to Florida and from Australia to Zaire. But no matter how disparate, they are—like some spiritual Starbucks—all alike in their trademark spirit, joy and Jewish pride that permeate the Gan Israel camp experience.

In 1956, Chabad-Lubavitch launched Gan Israel, an international network of summer camps, where children of all ages and walks of life learn to love their heritage while enjoying the best experience that camping offers. 
In those days, enjoying a summer camp complete with sports, arts, crafts, and entertaining activities was a novelty reserved for children of families with means. When Chabad-Lubavitch founded its summer camps, the guiding principle was that every child deserves to gain from the integration of education and camp activities and that no child should be left out. With strong support from communities worldwide, the majority of children currently attending Chabad-Lubavitch summer camps are on full or partial scholarship.

Gan Israel has grown into the world’s largest network of Jewish summer camps, with the summer of 2011 recording over 200,000 campers in North America, Europe, Australia, Russia, South America, and even Hong Kong.