KOMAZA (www.komaza.org) is a young social enterprise which works to lift rural families out of poverty by increasing income and generating permanent wealth through agro-forestry social business.
Rural African families living on dry, semi-arid land are among the poorest, hardest-to-serve people on Earth. Low, erratic rainfall coupled with degraded, infertile land presents near-insurmountable challenges to families who try to survive as subsistence farmers. But in these dry lands of seemingly insoluble problems, there is a wealth of opportunity. An opportunity to turn unproductive land into income- generating farms would break the vicious cycle of poverty and enable vast opportunities for prosperity.
KOMAZA has realized this solution in the form of intensive agro-forestry. We provide farmers with appropriate farm inputs and tools on credit, on-farm training and support, and complete vertically- integrated value capture services so that our rural families can transform their barren, infertile land into highly-profitable cash-crop farms. By increasing family income and wealth, we work to get families permanently out of extreme poverty and on the road to continued prosperity..
Since launching full-time operations in 2008, KOMAZA has successfully planted with nearly 10,000 families in Kenya’s Kilifi district and has established two industry-leading experimental farms to further refine the agricultural best-practices for our semi-arid farmers. These activities have demonstrated the viability of crop production in semi-arid environments while helping us develop the experience and systems necessary to scale our model to serve thousands of farmers.
Job Description – Roles and Responsibilities
Market Research and Analysis
Perform rigorous analysis of all possible markets for Eucalyptus and Jatropha with local, national, regional, and international scope. Conduct literature reviews, interviews, focus groups, and marketing experimentation to determine desired products, price points, subjective evaluation of value, and likelihood of behavioral change. Develop and conduct field-testing for product prototypes. Write market research reports and contribute to improving and refining our comprehensive business plan used for grant proposal and competitions.
Information Technology Systems
Assess organizational needs for new IT systems to improve operational management and execution. Consult with staff across organizational functional areas to develop appropriate system designs. Implement systems that will significantly impact KOMAZA’s core functions, such as tracking farmer and staff performance, monitoring program activities and impact, and improving web-based donor outreach and donation management. Externs interested in this position should have strong technical skills and familiarity with programming and database management and design.
We seek truly extraordinary individuals for our internship positions who can help us build an organization that we believe will become a major, worldwide NGO. This is an extremely competitive posting for a mission-critical function within KOMAZA. Therefore, please do not respond unless you fit these criteria:
• Exceptional writing, communication and organizational skills
• Strong self-manager with the ability to take ownership over important independent projects, including budget and work plan ownership
• Superior problem-solving and financial analysis skills
• Evidence of the ability to work well with and manage a diverse group of staff while understanding and responding to their professional development needs
• Extremely systematic, detail-oriented thinker with the ability to develop very detailed and high-quality written materials
• The extraordinary patience necessary to work in an environment where things move slowly and that can often be frustrating from a Western perspective
• Happiness to undertake significant field-based work (heat, bugs, thorns—not a total indoors or office-only type person)
• Eagerness to work Monday through Friday (8am-5pm), with nights and weekends when necessary (we all work very hard to build an organization that will forever end extreme rural poverty); willing to make work the top priority and fit into a hardworking professional culture
• A good “start-up” personality that fits Africa well
• No ego or drama—we are all stable people who are fun to be around. We are looking for others that combine strong leadership skills with a humble approach to service.
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