Forefront Software Development PLC has been granted a license by the Ethiopian Investment Commission (EIC) to start a software development business which targets orphans and vulnerable children within the nation.
Started by Aaron Klein, an aid worker who has lived in the country for a number of years and currently has two adopted local children; this business is to be a mechanism for young people, who would otherwise have little opportunities, to have the chance to be self-sufficient.
"We are excited to be launching a software development business in Ethiopia. We have a vision for creating mobile technology solutions for Ethiopian small businesses and shop owners to make them more successful," Aaron Klein, the co-founder of the company told The Reporter. "We are also a social enterprise that plans to devote 20 percent of our revenue to hiring Ethiopian orphans and underprivileged kids as student workers."
As Ethiopia is looking outside the conventional wisdom to help create jobs for its young population, the idea of a social enterprise has become popular. There are now growing interests and groups have started with the principles of social enterprise - including Tibeta Ambulance Services.
Ethiopia is also set to host the World Social Enterprise Conference later this year.
Aaron is noted as an investment advisor based in Auburn, California.Among other roles, he is the co-founder of Hope Takes Root, a vocational training and life coaching initiative that primarily works within Ethiopia.
In Ethiopia for a week, Aaron visited some of the projects he supports, in addition to those in Addis Ababa, Zeway and Adami Tulu, the latter, which he described as "Where it all started, for me with non-profit work in Ethiopia."
"Instead of having to pay tuition to a vocational school, we will hire these kids as a small salary to learn business, technology and leadership. We expect to launch the business in January 2020 and hire our first student workers in July 2020," he said.