Sydney businessman involved in Triguboff Bedouin project

August 6, 2017 by Asher Gold
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Australian businessman Leon Kamenev has donated to a joint Jewish-Bedouin project for the advancement of math studies.

The Australian Financial Review has reported that Sydney-based Kamenev sold two hi-tech companies for nearly $1 billion,

Leon Kamenev (2nd left) and Shalom Norman (centre)    Photo: Triguboff Institute

In recent weeks Kamenev visited the Segev Shalom Community Center in Israel’s Negev (Southern District) and spoke to local Bedouin kids who are learning math using special software produced by his company. Kamenev visited Israel to learn how his technology, which has already been introduced into many countries around the world, is impacting local schoolchildren and their learning processes and simultaneously supporting the advancement of the Negev and its population which is 30% Bedouin. The project is co-run by JNF NSW.

Kamenev co-owns Matific, a software company that produces math learning programs. The special project geared to the Israeli Bedouin community was created jointly by Israel’s Matific branch, the Triguboff Institute and the Segev Shalom Community Center. The Segev Shalom Math Study Center is part of several initiatives launched by the Triguboff Institute to advance the Negev district in Israel as a whole, and the Bedouin sector in particular, following David Ben-Gurion’s vision of developing the Negev.

Matific software follows a unique approach of teaching math from kindergarten to sixth grade through games and entertaining activities. The current project includes establishing a technological center that, among others, exposes children to the world of mathematics through innovative and recreational materials produced by Matific. The center caters to diverse groups of children, ages third grade and up, including home-schooled children and teenagers.

The company’s software uses real-life scenarios such as counting coins, pouring water and using scales to weigh objects to help children absorb fundamental lessons in math while playing fun and entertaining games. Matific is presently in use in 46 countries, with the USA, Australia and Brazil serving as its main buyers. The software has already been translated into 10 languages, and Kamenev reports that it boasts approximately one million registered users with 1000 new teachers registering to use the product every week.

Knowledge and understanding of mathematics are fundamental to achieving success in modern society. According to the Tamar Center, an Israeli NGO dedicated to advancing education in Bedouin communities, 8,877 school students completed the five-unit mathematics studies in Israel in 2012 (the highest level, equivalent to A grade in the Aussie secondary school system), but only 62 students derived from the Bedouin sector.  As a whole, the five-unit level was completed in only 30% of Bedouin schools, compared to 62% among the Israeli Arab community and 88.9% in Druze schools. Matific invites change in current math study trends in Israel and will hopefully open the door to many Bedouin kids who dream of acceptance into university and entering the high-tech world.

Triguboff Institute CEO Shalom Norman states: “The project’s added value is far beyond what we anticipated. The simplicity of the software has caused it to be enthusiastically received by both formal and informal systems, with the key to its success being the productive collaboration between the Segev Shalom Community Center headed by Kineret Bar-Gil, the Regional Council and Matific. We now have hundreds of participating children, and in light of this success, we’ve agreed with the donor to implement the program into additional centers that will benefit the entire Bedouin sector in the Negev.”


One Response to “Sydney businessman involved in Triguboff Bedouin project”
  1. neville davis says:

    what an amazing story !!!

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