Camp, Then and Now "For many of us, sleepaway camp is the first sizeable chunk of time away from parents. It’s a taste of adulthood. Nikayon , daily cleaning time, was the first time I really scrubbed a sink or swept an entire floor. Because camp means building a society in miniature, in which kids have more independence and power than they do back home, friendships there seem more vivid, more intense–a lifetime poured into a concentrated month or two." Unlike the author, Marjorie Ingall, I, on the other hand, just sent my son off to camp for his final summer as a camper. I love the independence, self-esteem and Jewish identity sleep away camp builds. It is irreplaceable in terms of building character!