Ronan James Meltzer
Redhill Maths Tutoring Initiative
Ronan Meltzer is a 16 year old South African student who aspires to use his love for maths to make a difference. He is involved in a wide spectrum of projects, notably his very own Redhill Maths Tutoring Initiative.
Ronan has ultimately been shaped by these experiences. Neo, a child that Ronan tutors at Nelson Mandela Children Hospital,was extremely apprehensive when he arrived to tutor maths. The first time at the hospital - “cha, ngiyazizonda izibalo”(no, I hate maths). The second time: “cha” (no). Eventually, Ronan convinced him with a few ‘Fizzers’: “Kulungile”(okay). The week after, as Ronan pulled back the curtain, Neo’s face and dimples glowed : “Ngicela uza” (please come). He told Ronan that last week’s session was the first time he enjoyed math, the first time he saw its beauty the way that Ronan saw it. Ronan was overcome by Neo’s face and those dimples - a feeling of knowing that math is not a burden, but a portal into a realm of patterns and logic - a feeling that he wishes to give to every child. That moment changed Ronan.
With a desire to make a difference to the maths crisis within South Africa, he founded the Redhill Maths Tutoring Initiative. The Redhill Maths Tutoring Initiative tutors patients at Nelson Mandela’s Children’s Hospital Nephrology Unit, Charlotte Maxeke Hospital and grades 7,8,9 from his own school- impacting over 1000 students and has improved their grades by over 50%.
He has also used his love for maths to spark that very same love within others with his Instagram account which he co-owns, Dare2solve, that provides free original Olympiad maths problems and solutions, and it has garnered nearly 15 thousand followers and 3 million views.
Besides for his tutoring initiative, he has also used his mathematical knowledge to try raise awareness about the GBV crisis within South Africa, where he conducted statistical research on Covid-19 Lockdown Levels and the effects on assaults - said to be ‘monumental’ by a Witwatersrand professor. This research ignited his love for statistics and he interned at the largest private bank in South Africa, Investec, where he gained vast knowledge and was invited to return the following year.
In school, he is the top IB student who has achieved ‘academic excellence’ throughout his entire school career and who is said,by his teachers, to be a ‘true leader’ and ‘always offers insightful contributions’. He leads his team to win the 6th round of the Tour de Maths competition amongst 21 schools, vice-chairs the outreach committee, is a debate youth leader and a first team rugby player. When not engaging in these initiatives during his free time Ronan is either rapping over his original music, beat-boxing or participating in various online courses.