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"Marabou" is a unique educational project created in 2014 for Russian-speaking children by psychologist Ekaterina Kadieva and writer Sergey Kuznetsov. Initially, we conceived of a math camp fuelled by our profound admiration for the Russian mathematical tradition that is renowned worldwide. We assembled a formidable team of mathematicians led by Jan Rauch and planned to host summer math sessions in Europe for children aged 10-14.

However, the project swiftly garnered interest beyond our initial scope, prompting us to broaden our curriculum to encompass a diverse array of humanities and natural sciences. Naturally, this expansion led to an increase in both the number of sessions and the variety of programs on offer. Since 2017, as our young participants grew older, but we didn't want to part ways, we saw fit to establish camps tailored for teenagers aged 14–17.

We host large camps, where each session lasts for two weeks, accommodating either fifty children or thirty teenagers, in various countries. We've already ventured to the Czech Republic, Hungary, Serbia, Estonia, and Finland. Since 2021, major summer camps for children and teens have also taken place in the USA. In autumn and spring, we spend a week in France at our own venue - the Le Sallay château-hotel in Burgundy. These sessions don't cover math, but instead offer lectures on art, biology, history, literature and other humanities and science disciplines.

Even during the covid-19 pandemic, we didn't cease our operations and organized online sessions with our lecturers and supervisors. Our activities also persisted despite the full-scale war in Ukraine. A portion of the funds we receive from European programs like "Marabou" and "Châteaulogy" is allocated to a scholarship fund to support children who had to leave their homes due to military conflict.

In our Archives section, you'll find that we run about 10 sessions of the "Marabou" camp for children and teenagers each year. Our database boasts around 700 children's names from over fifty countries. We work closely with approximately 200 lecturers - the best Russian-speaking experts from across the globe (you can find the full list in the Team section) - along with a large number of specially trained counselors. When it comes to recruiting senior counselors, we take it very seriously because they form the team that serves as the primary support for the children's psychological comfort throughout each session. This, alongside ensuring physical safety, is our top priority, hence why a doctor and psychologist are present at every session.

Our camps have inspired not only our friends, but also acquaintances of our lecturers, and, of course, the parents of "Marabou" children. This enthusiasm led to the birth of the "Châteaulogy" project for adults in the winter of 2018.The themed programmes at Château Le Sallay offer the chance to attend live lectures by leading experts,, engage in discussions within a close circle of like-minded individuals, and escape the everyday routine in a serene, beautiful, and cozy environment.

Sergey Kuznetsov: When I open the camp, I want to explain to the children that although we engage in such diverse activities here, it's all about the same thing. Because all these activities, all our courses - they're about the ability to think, which will certainly come in handy in life.

Yan Rauch: I would clarify: it's not just about the ability to think, but about the joy you'll start to experience when you learn to think and perceive more broadly.

Sergey Kuznetsov: Yes, exactly, about the joy! Children who already enjoy using their minds often come to us. Some are good at math, some at literature, some at cinema. And I would specify that for these children, our task is to teach them that this joy, this pleasure of thinking, can be found in other areas too, ones they might have previously dismissed as "Well, that's not for me."
What is Marabou all about?
  • Bespoke Courses
    Our lecturers—scientists, researchers, writers—design courses specifically for Marabou. And the children can choose and create their own schedules.
  • Engaging Mathematics
    From applied stereometry to olympiad brainteasers - no dull schoolwork here. We teach a fresh perspective on mathematics.
  • Team of Counselors
    All counselors undergo special training before camp. Many graduates go on to become counselors , preserving the Marabou spirit.
  • Informal Approach
    There are no obligations or boredom here. Even the most skeptical children join in after a couple of days. Our gentle approach and well-thought-out programme captivate everyone's interest.
  • Russian Language
    Children from all over the world come to us, bilingual and trilingual, some having never been to Russia. But what unites them is the Russian language—the language of literature, science, and communication with loved ones.
  • Community of Like-Minded People
    It's no exaggeration to say that Marabou truly brings people together. Both children and adults discover kindred spirits, make plans to attend future sessions together, keep in touch outside of camp, and forge enduring friendships that last for years.
Our aim is to ensure that participants are never bored, to instill a passion for learning, to uncover the beauty of science and knowledge in all its forms, to make countless discoveries, including self-discovery. We want them to realize their boundless potential!
Other Projects by Marabou founders
Everything we do, we do with love
Bilingual and English-language blended learning schools. Enriched curriculum, individualized approach.
Lectures and relaxation at Château Le Sallay in winter, spring, and autumn. Just like for the children, but for adults. (In Russian)