In our fast moving society where sectors such as technology and finance thrive and attract entrepreneurs, the traditional arts and crafts sector is usually least attractive to many people and especially to entrepreneurs. This was not the case with Ange Noelle Muco Muyubira who in 2012 launched Kaz’O’zah Art a social enterprise in the arts and crafts sector in Burundi. This enterprise seeks to revive the traditional arts & crafts sector by transforming skills that may seem archaic into a modern thriving industry using sustainable local techniques and materials to improve social welfare in Burundi.
Although officially trained as an interpreter, Ange gained entrepreneurial skills and created an enterprise that has recruited, trained and financed vulnerable Burundians to work in the artisanal sector. Kaz’O’zah Art seeks to improve the livelihood of artisans by increasing the artists access to the international market and through various trainings including health & sanitation and coaching in business & entrepreneurship.
Through its belief of investing in human capital and having a holistic approach, since opening its doors Kaz’O’zah Art has employed over 102 Burundians and has generated $111,154 since 2014. This enterprise has also been in the forefront for producing the first Burundi reusable sanitary pads in partnership with UNFPA, which were included in returning refugee kits for over 5,000 women. Kaz’O’zah Art has shown that it is possible to improve social welfare through creative artisanal products.
What is your personal ambition?
My personal ambition is to see Arts and Crafts become one of the leading sectors in bringing foreign currency into Burundi and for craftsmanship to allow Burundi artisans to contribute to the social and economic strength of the country.
What impact do you see your business making?
I believe Kaz’O’zah Art will make a positive impact in many ways. For starters it will create a space for innovation where Burundian artisans can come together and support each other, forming a network for artisans and creating a positive environment where they can share their knowledge and artistry. Such a space will nurture and enhance the entrepreneurial spirit of local artists, increasing market access and profitability for existing local artisans. It will also increase artisans’ access to tools and resources needed to create quality local products. Kaz’O’zah Art will not only connect highly skilled artists with increased employment opportunities but it will create jobs by exposing them to a more dynamic international market with more opportunities. Furthermore, Kaz’O’zah Art aims to contribute to the positive reputation of Burundi as a vibrant, creative and artistic country.
How do you see the future of your business?
We are excited about continuing to work towards reviving the traditional arts & crafts sector by transforming these skills that are often seen as archaic into a modern thriving industry, which uses sustainable local techniques and materials to improve social welfare in Burundi.