PJ Goes to Camp – Summer of 2020

First-time campers are eligible for grants of up to $1,000

As of April 1, 2020 the PJ Goes to Camp program is no longer accepting new applications for first-time grants for the 2020 camp season.

All available grants have been distributed and there is a sufficiently long waiting list that anyone applying at this time would have no reasonable expectation of receiving a grant.

We are not aware of other funding opportunities for children who will be attending camp for the first time for the summer of 2020.

For those who have been provisionally awarded a grant, it is our policy that if your child does not attend an overnight camp for 12 days or longer FOR ANY REASON in 2020, you remain eligible to reapply for a grant for the 2021 season. We are in communications with camps so if your camp or camp session is cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic we will learn that from the camp. If your camp or camp session is still held but you choose to withdraw from the program, we appreciate you letting us know that by e-mailing us a message at pjgtc@hgf.org.

We anticipate that the PJ Goes to Camp program for the 2021 camp season will open on October 1, 2020.  We will begin accepting applications for a One Happy Camper referral code on that date at this web page.

The information below is being retained for reference only as our 2020 program rules.



To be eligible to receive a grant from PJ Goes to Camp, a camper must be ALL of the following:

  1. A current or former PJ Library* subscriber, or the sibling of a current or former PJ Library subscriber who was enrolled in PJ Library on or before September 1st, 2019.
  2. Attending a non-profit Jewish overnight camp** in the U.S. or Canada that participates in the national One Happy Camper program.
  3. Attending overnight camp for the first time. First-time campers are children who have never attended a Jewish overnight camp for 12 or more consecutive days.  Campers who attended a one-week “taste of camp” program in a prior camp year are eligible to receive a 2020 grant.
  4. Attending camp in 2020 for 12 or more consecutive days.
  5. A resident of the United States or Canada

*Throughout this page, “PJ Library” refers to both the PJ Library and PJ Our Way programs
**A full list of participating camps can be found on the One Happy Camper website

GRANT Details


PJ Goes to Camp provides incentive grants in the amount of $700 for campers who attend overnight camp for 12-18 days, or $1,000 for campers who attend camp for 19 days or longer. 

There are a limited number of PJ Goes to Camp incentives for 2020.

Grant recipients who do not attend camp for 12 or more days for any reason will forfeit their grant. Grant amounts will be adjusted for campers who attend camp for less than 19 days, but more than 12 days for any reason.

If the camper receives an incentive from another One Happy Camper sponsor, they are not eligible for a PJ Goes to Camp incentive.

PJ Goes to Camp grants awarded through the One Happy Camper program are paid directly to the camp in the camper’s name. Funds are distributed to participating camps beginning in April 2020. Program participation rules require camps to verify that each grant recipient meets all eligibility requirements, (including first-time status and session length) prior to the grant being awarded.

Grants are distributed to students who attend a Jewish day school by lottery:
The PJ Goes to Camp program is one of few OHC sponsors who offer grants to students who attend a Jewish day school.  Because of the high demand and limited number of available grants, awards to students who attend a Jewish day school are distributed through a lottery system.  The lottery for grants for day school students will be held in November.  However, day school students may complete an application and be placed on our wait list.

Day school students who apply after November 17, 2019 will be placed on the wait list in the order in which their request is received.



There is a two-step application process to receive a grant from PJ Goes to Camp. First, applicants must submit a request for an access code. Once they receive that code, applicants then fill out and complete a grant application using the access code on the One Happy Camper website. 

An access code can be obtained in the following two ways: one for students who attend Jewish Day School, and one for students who attend public school or a non-Jewish private school.

Public school students:  The first step in receiving a PJ Goes to Camp grant is to request a PJ Goes to Camp access code.  By requesting an access code, the process of verifying your eligibility will begin.  Your receipt of an access code indicates that a PJ Goes to Camp grant for 2020 has been reserved in your name.  To claim your grant you MUST complete a One Happy Camper application. 



Jewish day-school students: Between October 2, 2019 and November 17, 2019, applicants can enter the lottery that will distribute access codes to campers who attend a Jewish day school. One application per person. Duplicates will be deleted.


After November 17, 2019 day school students can place their name on our day school student wait list.


All three of the above buttons direct applicants to complete the same form.  This one form is used to review all applications.  Upon completion of the form you will receive additional information from the PJ Goes to Camp program.



1. Can multiple children from the same family receive grants?

Yes! Families may request and receive an incentive grant for more than one child if each is attending camp for the first time. Each child must request and use a separate access code.  For children who attend a Jewish day school, it is possible that one may be selected in the lottery to receive a grant and another child may not be selected. Access codes are not transferrable between siblings.

2. Does PJ Goes to Camp award grants based on financial need?

No. PJ Goes to Camp is a general incentive program not tied to financial need.

3. Can I receive an award from PJ Goes to Camp in addition to, or in place of, a One Happy Camper grant from my local community?

No, PJ Library subscribers who live in a community that locally sponsors the One Happy Camper program will be directed to their community program when filling out the One Happy Camper grant application. Should your child be eligible for a local grant, the rules and terms of your grant will be determined and controlled by the rules of that organization, not by PJ Goes to Camp.

4. Are there areas of the U.S. or Canada where residents are NOT eligible for a grant from PJ Goes to Camp?

Yes. Dallas, Memphis, Miami, Madison, WI., Palm Springs and Orange County, CA., North Palm Beach County, FL, Phoenix, AZ, and parts of Arkansas are communities that have chosen not to participate in the One Happy Camper program.  As a result, applicants from those communities are not eligible for grants through PJ Goes to Camp and will be informed of their community withdrawal.

The communities of Kansas City, New Orleans, Cincinnati, Cleveland and Western Massachusetts provide locally administered campership grants and applicants from these six communities will be directed to their local first-time campership program coordinator in lieu of PJ Goes to Camp.

5. My child attended camp last year, but did not receive a PJ Goes to Camp grant.  May we apply for a grant this year?

No. The PJ Goes to Camp program is only for children attending camp for the first time in 2020. However, if your child attended overnight camp for less than 12 days in 2019 they are eligible to receive a grant in 2020

6. What if my child is not eligible for a grant through PJ Goes to Camp?

Even if you are not eligible for a grant from PJ Goes to Camp, there still may be other funding available to you. Check out your options and eligibility by filling out an application on the Foundation for Jewish Camp’s One Happy Camper website.

7.  My child attends a Jewish day school and I found out about this grants after the lottery ended.  Can I still apply for a grant? 

Yes, you should complete an application for an access code and will be placed on the wait list for day school students in the order in which they are received, below those who entered, but were not selected, in the lottery.

8.  I have already paid (or am required to pay) the camp in full. Can the PJ Goes to Camp grant be sent to me?

No, funds are distributed to the camps on behalf of the camper. You will receive formal notification of the grant and should use that notification in lieu of that payment to the camp.

For additional questions, please email pjgtc@hgf.org or call 413-276-0735. If you call, please leave a phone number and email address where you can be reached. 

PJ Goes to Camp program timeline



Campers who attend a:
Public School (including charter)
Private, secular school
Home School

Campers who attend a:
Jewish day school

October 2, 2019

Campers may request an access code for PJ Goes to Camp funding in the One Happy Camper program

Campers may enter the lottery to receive a PJ Goes to Camp access code

November 17, 2019


Window to enter day school student lottery close at 11:59 PM PDT

November 25, 2019


Campers selected in lottery will be notified and sent an access code.  Others will be notified and placed on a waiting list.

Through February, 2020

Campers may continue to apply for a PJ Goes to Camp access code.
When all budgeted PJ Goes to Camp grants have been distributed, campers will automatically be placed on a waiting list

Campers may place their names on the day school student waiting list.

February, 2020

PJ Goes to Camp contacts camps to verify camper eligibility.  When eligibility is verified campers are sent an e-mail confirming the grant.

April, 2020

Grant payments begin – payments are made directly to the camp on behalf of all campers.

August, 2020

Camps verify camper attendance



PJ Goes to Camp is but one funder of the Foundation for Jewish Camp’s One Happy Camper program. Program guidelines and restrictions of the One Happy Camper program will determine incentive eligibility, award and payment procedures within the limits of the One Happy Camper program.

The Harold Grinspoon Foundation reserves the right to limit the number of PJ Goes to Camp incentive grants that are awarded through the One Happy Camper program and to determine eligibility of applicants based on available funds for each category of incentive award. It is the responsibility of the applicant to assure that the application is complete and submitted within the time restrictions specified by the program, and that they meet all eligibility and camp attendance requirements.

The Harold Grinspoon Foundation will be the final determiner of an applicant's PJ Library-related eligibility as well as for determining the recipients of awards granted. In case of dispute, the decision of the Harold Grinspoon Foundation shall be final.