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Moi University (2017)

Youth participation in vegetable production towards improvement of livelihoods in Kakamega town, Kenya

EDWIN ANAKADI BUTIYA JUMA

Titre : Youth participation in vegetable production towards improvement of livelihoods in Kakamega town, Kenya

Auteur : EDWIN ANAKADI BUTIYA JUMA

Université de soutenance : Moi University

Grade : Master of Arts in Geography 2017

Résumé
Urban vegetable production is critical in supplementing food, saving on food expense, income generation and improving the livelihood of farmers. However, minimal research has been done to establish whether youth participation in vegetable production could improve livelihoods. This study focused on the extent of youth participation in vegetable production towards improvement of livelihoods in Kakamega Town, Kenya. It specifically aimed to : establish the contribution of youth to vegetable production, assess the farming resources accessible to youth, establish the benefit of vegetable production to livelihoods, and identify the major constraints to vegetable production and livelihoods. This study employed the Theory of Planned Behaviour, Sustainable Livelihood Approach and a conceptual model to understand the problem. A survey research design was adopted whereby 159 households were randomly selected and data was collected by use of structured questionnaires, interview schedules, and photography. It was established that youth mainly engaged in land preparation, planting, weeding, pest and disease control and harvesting of vegetables mainly in the afternoon on weekdays. It was revealed that more than 90% of the youth would continue engaging in vegetable production in future. Youth engaged in other livelihood activities due to the higher and quick returns, interests, academic qualifications and job satisfaction obtained. Vegetable plots were mainly obtained through negotiation with the county government officials. Most youth were accessible to water for irrigation. Personal savings were the main source of finance while the farm inputs were mainly bought. Parents were the main alternative source of labour and the extension services were mostly sought from agricultural shows. Parents and older siblings influenced the youth to start engaging in vegetable production. Youth participation in vegetable production enhanced food supply, saving on food expenses, income generation and involvement in social activities. The main vegetable production constraints included : chicken destruction of vegetable ; insect pests and diseases ; vegetable theft ; inadequate land and insufficient finance. Some of the vegetable production constraints were managed by : fencing of vegetable gardens ; applying insecticides ; reporting theft cases to the administration and hiring of more land. In conclusion, youth participation in vegetable production promoted food supply, reduction on food expenditure, income generation and participation in social activities. It is recommended that access to farming resources should be enhanced and production constraints minimized to promote youth participation in vegetable production. Urban planners and scholars should focus on youth participation in vegetable production on community lands in Kakamega or other urban centres towards improvement of livelihoods.

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