WE LOVE CAMP FELIX BECAUSE
"...Camp Felix makes me feel confident and comfortable."
“...I can be myself, I can be free from home and I can have fun!”
“...Camp Felix makes me have better self-esteem.”
"...Camp Felix makes me feel happy and important."
Camp Felix is a place where children in the foster care system can just be children. From swim instruction to art, rock climbing and dance, Camp Felix campers are able to overcome fears, try new activities, and form bonds with dedicated staff members and campers who share a similar background.
Residing in some of New York City’s most impoverished communities, our kids are given a chance they wouldn't otherwise have: the opportunity to experience the joys of summer camp, a rite of passage for most American children.
In partnership with The New York Foundling, Felix has sent over 2,000 youth from the New York City foster care system to our flagship camp in Putnam Valley, NY, since we began in 2006.
COVID-19 Special Update: Our Response
We made the difficult decision to cancel our in-person summer programming in 2020 in order to safeguard the health and well-being of our campers, which is always paramount.
However, we remain dedicated to finding creative ways to bring the outdoors, sunshine, and community spirit of Camp Felix to our kids through this hard time, so we will be converting our programming to virtual and pop-up day-camp experiences.
Read below for Program Updates:
Teen girls from St. Christopher’s constructed a garden on-site at their residence, built garden beds, planted flowers and veggies, harvested and cooked their crops...a great way to dig in the dirt while creating a safe and beautiful space for reflection.
Teen girls from two Good Shepherds congregate care facilities in Manhattan hit the road on a series of eight day-trips throughout the summer. From Jones Beach to Boscobel gardens on the Hudson, the girls saw inspiring new sights and spent time in nature.
In partnership with the New York Foundling, our Camp Felix Putnam Valley and Bryan’s Camp Felix campers enjoyed four weeks of virtual camp, with everything from Dance to Yoga, Acting to Breathwork, and visits from Broadway stars. Meals were provided along with devices and internet connection to all who needed it.
25 teen boys in foster care attended a virtual Bryan’s Camp Felix At Home, where they participated in exciting activities designed to keep their age group engaged and energized, including yoga, theater games, art, acting classes, animation, fitness, music production, photography, STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) workshops, creative writing, and drumming!
In 2019, 184 New York City youth attended Camp Felix Putnam Valley, the greatest number of campers we've served in one season since our inception.
Camp Felix 2019 Stats:
kids per cabin
age of campers
season's we've been in operation
age of our counselors-in-training
# of former Camp Felix campers who have become Counselors-In-Training or paid staff members
Bryan's Camp Felix
In August 2018, we expanded The Camp Felix model to reach even more children by launching Bryan's Camp Felix. This program serves a more at-risk cohort of foster youth, teen boys from the Therapeutic Family Foster Care program at The New York Foundling. In partnership with The Bryan Jacobson Foundation, we now send approximately 20 young men each summer to this new Camp Felix program, where they spend five days at Club Getaway located in Kent, CT for a life-changing experience!
Check out some photos from our inaugural summer below:
Camp Felix Teen Girls Getaway
In August 2017, The Felix Organization launched Camp Felix Teen Girls Getaway, a female empowerment camp, uniquely designed for teen girls in foster care. This program, located at Club Getaway in the Berkshire Mountains of Connecticut, offers leadership and personal growth activities to help our campers build self-esteem, interpersonal skills and reinforce healthy lifestyles and an appreciation for nature.
In partnership with two residential foster care programs operated by Good Shepherds Services and St. Christopher's Inc., this program is held for two weeks each summer, for approximately 30 young women ages 13 to 16.
Check out some photos of our girls' adventures below:
Never been to Camp Felix in Putnam Valley? Not to worry!
You can take a virtual tour of Camp Felix with our Executive Director, Amanda!
We take the ongoing evaluation of our programs very seriously so that we can continuously improve our quality of service. Camp Felix’s program and facilities are overseen and reviewed every summer by The Putnam County Department of Health. Our meals program is assessed by The New York State Department of Education’s Summer Food Service Program. The Camp Director conducts a camper and parent survey as well as an annual review and debrief meeting that is attended by The Executive Directors of The Felix Organization and the New York Foundling as well as The Co-founders of Felix and key camp staff members. In addition, Camp Felix is evaluated every three years by a national nonprofit accreditor of human services, The Council on Accreditation.