Camp Newman has always focused on outdoor education and environmentally conscious living. Their program continues to grow through Operation Kibbutz Yarok, an environmental education space that creates communities committed to sustainability. The kibbutz program includes daily work in the garden; interactive environmental education activities; learning about food issues through cooking with fresh and healthy ingredients; and reducing waste through composting. After a few years of work, the kibbutz is now complete with a field kitchen made primarily with recycled wood and a recycled-material t'filah space completed in the summer of 2010. The oldest campers stay on the kibbutz, writing an environmental ketubah at the start of the summer and working the land daily while spending the afternoon at camp with the larger Newman community.
Last summer, campers developed a full-unit program about waste issues and put this learning into action by composting food waste from the dining hall - and starting a compost pile that will "feed" the garden next summer. In addition to the full-time kibbutz program for the oldest campers, Newman runs environmental programming for other units, teaching about the history of the kibbutz movement, permaculture and waste reduction techniques, food justice issues and more. As part of their social justice unit on food issues last summer, campers visited a local farm, honed their advocacy skills and traveled to Sacramento to advocate to their state legislators on food issues.
Watch the video to learn more about Operation Kibbutz Yarok: