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Moi University (2013)

Socio-cultural and economic factors influencing Women involvement in the production and supply of cultural Tourism products : A case of Katangi Women basket weavers in Yatta- Machakos, Kenya

Matiku Susan M. 

Titre : Socio-cultural and economic factors influencing Women involvement in the production and supply of cultural Tourism products : A case of Katangi Women basket weavers in Yatta- Machakos, Kenya

Auteur : Matiku Susan M. 

Université de soutenance : Moi University

Grade : MASTER DEGREE OF TOURISM MANAGEMENT 2013

Résumé
A majority of women in the developing world often carry a considerable workload and are increasingly playing active roles in development sectors. One such sector is the tourism industry where women participate in the production and supply of tourism products. However, the extent to which women are involved vary significantly from that of men. Despite the fact that much research has been done on women participation in production of tourism products, the factors influencing their involvement in tourism production has not been empirically investigated. Thus this research used the case of Katangi Women in Yatta who over the years have been actively involved in making of traditional hand bags and baskets commonly known as “Kyondos”, to investigate and establish the factors that influence women involvement in the production and supply of tourism products. Specifically the study investigated the cultural, social and economic factors that influence women involvement in the production and supply of tourism products, the role women play in production of tourism products, the significance of basket weaving in Katangi, and the benefits of involvement in cultural tourism production. The study employed both qualitative and quantitative data collection techniques. Data was gathered from identified respondents. The target population included the women involved in production and supply of Tourism products in Katangi, and Opinion Leaders. The researcher employed purposive sampling technique to select 132 basket weavers (artists) from the women group that was active and with the most numerous and diverse membership. By use of snowball sampling the researcher selected 13 opinion leaders. The study collected data using open ended researcher administered questionnaires. Further information was gathered from purposively sampled key informants through interviews. Focus group discussions between the researcher and the basket weavers were conducted. Collected data was coded and analyzed using the Statistical Package for Social Science (SPSS). The findings were analyzed using descriptive statistics. Results are presented in tables, and verbatim quotations to facilitate description and explanations and drawing of conclusions. Secondary data, collected from available literature, was used to identify women participation in tourism production, involvement of women in development, women involvement in tourism development, identify the cultural attributes of the community, as well as understand the factors affecting women involvement in cultural tourism. The study established that women produced handcrafts and sold them to tourists as souvenirs. This was influenced by poverty in the area, the large family numbers and the fact that it kept the women networked for social and cultural activities. Through the handcrafts the women played a critical role in mitigating financial difficulties in their families, as well as conservation and preservation of Kamba culture of traditional basket weaving. The study reports mounting evidence of women‘s wish and capacity to take their problems into their own hands through self-help groups. 58% of the artisans interviewed earned more than Ksh.1000/- per month from basket weaving thereby encouraging self-reliance and dispelling the stereotyping of dependence on men. This was the major motivation for their involvement in basket weaving. The study contributes to a better understanding of the issues affecting women who are involved in production of cultural tourism products. It also provides information and recommendations to the policy makers and tourism stakeholders regarding what needs to be done to improve women participation and involvement in tourism production.

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