Art Innovation Incubator
The Art Innovation Incubator (AII) is a ten-month long social impact artisan training program run through our non-profit orgazniation, Kaz'O'zah Keza.
The AII is comprised of vocational training, English language lessons, health & sanitation education, business & entrepreneurship coaching, and creative thinking.
Artisans are required to apply to the AII and they are selected based on a specific set of criteria, the most important being a demonstrated passion and interested in craftsmanship. Students participating in the AII also receive a working stipend.
The AII will facilitate the further growth of Burundian artisans by providing them with the necessary skills and competencies to produce high quality items, and also to succeed as entrepreneurs.
After successfully completing the AII, artisans will have the opportunity to obtain employment with Kaz’O’zah Art, or we will assist them in forming their own artisan cooperatives. Highly skilled artisans will be selected and trained to be vocational trainers for the AII programs and increase the AII's overall sustainability.
Read our Art Innovation Incubator 2015 Report here
Art Innovation Incubator Courses
These non-vocational courses are offered over the course of the four-month AII program for aspiring artisans.
The English course runs twice a week throughout the entire four months. The course focuses on helping the artisans to develop a basic level of English, both spoken and written, to allow them to converse with clients about their products as well as take specific orders. The course is taught by a local Burundian English teacher who has been certified in TEFL and has taught for over 10 years.
The health course is comprehensive and covers the following topics: sexual and reproductive health, water, sanitation, hygiene, nutrition, and HIV/AIDS and other STIs. We also encourage the women to bring their daughters to the classes that are specific to issues relating to women and girls. The course is facilitated by a local community parnter who has many of experiences working in the health sector and has provided courses to a wide variety of beneficiaries.
The business and entrepreneurship course is specifically designed to work with artisans and introduce them to the idea of forming cooperatives. Through this course the artisans will cover many topics, including how to create a business plan, how to conduct meetings, basic financial management and bookkeeping, pricing, and long term planning. The course is facilitated by PARJE, a local organization that specializes in training and supporting young Burundian entrepreneurs.
The creative design course's main purpose is to help the artisans to become more innovative and learn to come up with their own product designs. The course will include a component of market research through field trips to stores, looking at magazines, and conducting searches on the internet. The creative design course will be taught by Kaz'O'zah Art's founder and principal designer, Ange Muyubira, as well as by a series of guest designers.
Establishing And Managing a Cooperative
This course builds on what the artisans learnt in Basic Business and Entrepreneurship. The course is designed to prepare the artisans to form and manage their own cooperatives. During the course the artisans will be taken through the steps necessary to create a cooperative, including how best to select cooperative partners based on individuals' various strength and weaknesses. The course will be taught by Espérance Niyongere, Kaz'O'zah Keza's in-house business training specialist.