Sponsor NGO: Building Bridges in Burundi (BBB)
“I came to Kaz‘O’zah last year to learn leather work. Seeing other artisans making clothes of various designs opened my eyes to the opportunity and potential in the sewing skill. I returned a month later to learn sewing. It was really challenging and I made a couple of mistakes that almost cost me the opportunity.
I am grateful to co-artisans who were very supportive and to the fact that I did not give up -now I see the fruits of my efforts of perseverance. Apart from becoming one of the head artisans, I have also been able to improve my livelihood.
From my average income of 87000 Bif ($45 USD), I have raised the school fees for my daughter in grade 2. I am also able to rent a piece of land for my agribusiness ventures and I pay each of the women who help me cultivate my crops.”
“I came [to Kaz’O‘zah] last year to learn sandal and bag making. I did not know that a sewing machine would change my life. Life was very miserable before I started sewing, my daughters would go days without milk and I also spent days without Vaseline on my skin.
When my leather work training class ended I returned to learn how to sew clothes. Working as a seamstress has helped me provide milk for my two daughters which was always hard to come by.
With my income, I can now buy soap, Vaseline, pay our house dues, food and the maid who looks after my girls while I am at work. Since my husband doesn’t have a job anymore, he gives me a lot of respect now that I am able to put a meal on the table. I wish to give him part of my savings so he can resume his Charcoal selling business.”
Pilot Kaz’O‘zah program
“My role [at Kaz’O‘zah] is to make jewelry and accessories. I proudly say I am glad to have been one of the pioneer artisans who has been part of the journey of Kaz’O’zah since day one.
Life before was really tricky and challenging. I had no job and my husband was in charge of providing everything for the family.
It is [with Kaz’O‘zah] that I learned how to make jewelry and got a job. Now my husband and I share responsibilities. I pay rent and provide the food while he pays the school fees. I am happy I don’t have to stay home anymore.”
Speciality: Wrap-Skirts and High-Low Dresses
“I am a seamstress with more than 8 years’ experience in making women clothes.
Being part of Kaz’O’zah has helped me a great deal to learn new designs and grow my skill. It earned me an opportunity to travel to Uganda and train a group of youth. I have also made saving part of daily routine after a series of lesson from our finance literacy class.
When business is not going well, I can always count on my Savings Group for a loan with a never stressing interest.”
“My name is Aloys Ndinduruvuga- I am also commonly referred to as ‘Mutama’ by fellow artisans. I am a 60 year old father to 9 children who have given me 20 grandchildren.
I have spent the last 50 years of my life weaving. With this kind of experience, there is no design I can’t make. Before joining Kaz’O’zah, selling my woven products was quite hard, baskets would gather dust for months and months by the road side without customer buying.
With help from Kaz’O’zah, I have had my products marketed without much of my effort and I have learnt new modern designs that have kept my skill relevant over the years.
Now, all my children have completed school and I have been able to buy two pieces of land, one has got our home and the other is for our subsistence farming.
I hope to some day pass on this skill to many other young people who then will pass it on to then generation because it is our African pride.”
“I specifically make business products ranging from bags to clothes. I was an artisan before joining Kaz’O‘zah team but I only made bags to earn myself some little income. All the other products I know how to make, thanks to Kaz’O‘zah.
I did not imagine that my skill would take me beyond the borders of Bujumbura, but in 2017 Kaz‘O’zah turned my dream into reality when it gave me an opportunity to travel to Uganda and train youths. It was a wonderful experience for me to share my skill and knowledge with other young people.
Besides feeling really lucky, I was able to save up some money about 2,000,000 Bif ($1,050 USD) which I used to construct my two bedroomed house in Kanyosha.”