This week, the Hunt Institute’s Social Enterprise Program shines the spotlight on our newest social entrepreneur, Clara Rulegura Ford. Ford is the Founder and CEO of Kijiji Innovative Sustainable Solutions (K.I.S.S.) and a Class of 2020 commitment maker with the Clinton Global Initiatives University (CGIU).
Ford was born and raised in Tanzania, but has lived in the United States since 2000. After earning a BBA in Accounting from University of Houston-Downtown and 2 MA degrees in Applied Economics and Sustainability & Development from SMU, Clara worked in the financial services industry for JP Morgan Chase and Bank of America. She is currently a senior associate examiner at the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas. From a young age, her dad, a politician, and her mom, a public-school teacher, instilled in her the importance of public service and giving back. With this goal in mind, Ms. Ford founded K.I.S.S. along with her former economics professor at SMU, Thomas Osang.
Kijiji Innovative Sustainable Solutions is a registered nonprofit organization whose mission is to promote sustainable development in Tanzania through education, community activism, sustainable initiatives, and youth and women empowerment. These initiatives will be implemented through the K.I.S.S. Training and Education Center located in the village of Kasisa in northern Tanzania. The center will focus on the following 9 training and education projects: sustainable and durable housing, energy efficiency, renewable energy, clean water access, toilet design & sanitation system, sustainable agriculture & aquaculture, garbage reduction & recycling, education & vocational training, and health care. Collectively, these development programs will reduce rural poverty and significantly improve the quality of life for the individuals and families living in the region.
“Our icon means ‘help me to help you’, a symbol of cooperation and interdependence. That’s what K.I.S.S. is all about. To bring about sustained economic development through cooperation and interdependence between us, our partners, and the communities we serve.” – Clara Rulegura Ford
The land for the K.I.S.S. Training and Education Center has been purchased, and construction will commence soon. Ford’s goal is for the Center to be in operation by 2022.
Stay tuned to the Hunt Institute Digest for updates on the Kijiji project and for more examples of social entrepreneurs.
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