Policy Planning and Management Collection

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    Determinants of conflicts coping strategies among farmers and pastoralists in Kilosa and Kiteto districts, Tanzania
    (Rural Planning Journal, 2018) Saruni, Parit; Urassa, Justin; Kajembe, George
    Natural resource use conflict is a global issue. In sub-Saharan Africa, such conflicts can be extreme; even resulting into deaths of individuals. There is a plethora of literature exploring the causes and effects of such conflicts. The study explored farmers-pastoralists coping strategies to natural resource use conflicts and determinants of these strategies. To answer the above objectives, key informant interviews and focus group discussions were conducted with stakeholders in Kilosa and Kiteto Districts in Tanzania to establish the understanding of the issue and its local context. A stratified random sample of pastoralists (n=143) and farmers (n=230) was selected to quantify responses to conflict. The finding show that conflicts were quite extreme and included cases of physical violence including setting fire on the farms. Those affected were forced to buy food or rely on relatives and wider social networks (including local government) to provide practical support. Emotional support from relatives and social networks and from religious organisations was also important. Male-headed, larger, and younger households were more likely to use coping strategies (p <0.05) than female-headed, smaller, and older households. Also, land ownership is likely to increase the use of strategies for coping with conflicts among households. Therefore, it is recommended that people in the areas affected by conflicts should be encouraged to own land, have proper land planning and use in order to minimize natural resource use conflicts among actors especially farmers and pastoralists. Additionally, the design of rules and regulations should be informed by the actual coping strategies adopted by farmers and pastoralists.
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    Personalities and the performance of lead farmers: a case of projects applying the rural initiatives for participatory agricultural transformation approach, Tanzania
    (Tanzania Journal of Development Studies, 2022) Ringo, D. E.; Urassa, J. K.
    Voluntary adoption and expanding use of lead farmers (LFs) under the farmer-to-farmer extension (F2FE) approach by organizations, in the absence of any direct external promotion, confirms its effectiveness in responding to extension delivery. needs. Although the F2FE approach has been used by many organizations and projects in Africa, there have been few studies—and limited promotion—using this approach when compared to the farmer field school (FFS) approach. This paper explores the needed personalities fit for LFs’ career, and the way they can be improved. Using a cross-sectional research design, a sample of 384 farmers was selected through systematic sampling from a population of 1800 project beneficiaries whose list was obtained from the RIPAT project managers. Primary data were analysed using the SPSS app, whereby variables related to personalities fit for LFs in leadership and facilitation skills were analysed using cross-tabulation. Checklists were used in collecting qualitative data through FGDs and KIIs, and were analysed through content analysis. The results show that the most needed personalities and associated soft skills to LFs include integrity (58.6%), being courageous (54.3%) and volunteerism (37.2%). The contribution of personalities to the performance of LFs includes helping them to become role models, increasing their reliability in the community, and enabling them in bringing group harmony. It was learned that the improvement of LFs’ personalities can be achieved through setting goals for developing good relationship with others and practical training, which entails mentorship and coaching. It is concluded that the needed personalities and associated soft skills of LFs are related to leadership and facilitation skills. Therefore, it is recommended that these personality traits be considered in complementing the hard skills of LFs when it comes to F2FE.
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    Reconciling east-african wetland conservation with human needs: managing uncertainties in environmental policy design
    (Springer Netherlands, 2023) Langensiepen, Matthias; Opiyo, Erick Omwandho; Kaudia, Alice A; Rugege, Denis; Kyambadde, Richard; Akotsi, Erick; Ningu, Julius K; Munyazikwiye, Faustin; Ngaboyamahina, Theogene; Urassa, Justin K; Ugen, Michael; Oyieke, Dieudonné Sebashongore Helida; Misana, Salome; Kammesheidt, Ludwig; Becker, Mathias
    Rapidly developing societies in East-Africa impose increasing pressures on wetlands due to rising food demand and degradation of upland soils. Reconciling wetland conservation with human needs for food and energy is therefore becoming an increasing contentious issue. Stakeholders and actor coalitions generate and apply a great variety of meanings, values, and interests when interacting with wetlands which are hardly predictable. Wetland policy-making is hence fraught with uncertainties which need to be managed for finding solutions to this problem. Based on experiences of a collaborative wetland research in East-Africa we developed a new wetland policy process framework which promotes social deliberation and reconciliation of plural wetland values to reduce these uncertainties. A new cognitive-driven information design (CDID) method has been developed to assist wetland policy-analysts in achieving these aims and also to overcome limitations of prescriptive decision-making. The method employs information and communication technologies to analyze, integrate and visualize complex socio-ecological wetland information for developing policy scenarios. It is applied at all stages of the wetland policy process including agenda setting, identification of plural wetland values, establishment of decision-scenarios, social deliberation during policy formulation, governmental decision-taking, policy implementation and evaluation. A three-stage implementation process is recommended.
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    Contribution of Malawi’s decentralized agricultural extension service system to farmers’ maize productivity
    (Tanzania Journal of Agricultural Sciences, 2022) Mphepo, P. J.; Urassa, Justin
    Agricultural extension plays a critical role in the agricultural sector’s development and sustainability of farmers’ productivity and well-being. Malawi has consistently been reforming its agricultural extension services to increase accessibility by farmers. However, smallholder farmers’ productivity remains low. Therefore, the study on which the paper is based, aimed at examining the contribution of Malawi’s decentralized agricultural extension system (DAESS) to households’ maize productivity. Specifically, the study aimed at determining how farmers’ access to agricultural extension services, factors associated with their maize productivity and lastly, farmers’ satisfaction with Malawi’s DAESS. The study adopted the cross-sectional research design whereby a structured questionnaire was used to collect quantitative data from 150 smallholder maize farmers in Mangochi district, Malawi. In addition, supplementary data were collected from 10 focus group discussions involving 6 – 8 participants and from nine (9) key informant interviews. IBM-SPPS was used to determine descriptive and inferential statistics. Regression analysis was run to determine how access to extension services is associated with maize productivity. Farmers’ satisfaction with DAESS was measured using a 5-point Likert scale. Study findings show that farmers’ access to extension services was positively and significantly (p<0.001) associated with maize productivity and that 73.3% of smallholder farmers expressed a high level of satisfaction with the services provided. It is concluded that access and number of visits to extension services raise farmers’ maize productivity. It is also concluded that most smallholder farmers in Mangochi district were satisfied with the extension services they received. Therefore, it is recommended that the government of Malawi should continue with the implementation and improvement of the DAESS and use of the lead farmer approach to expand access to quality agricultural extension services by smallholder farmers.
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    School based reproductive health education and teenage pregnancy: a case of Mtwara region, Tanzania
    (IISTE, 2019) Dunor, Hawa; Urassa, Justin K.
    Teenage pregnancy is one of the complex health and development problems facing the world. In Tanzania adolescent pregnancy has been identified as one of the reasons for girls dropping out of school. The purpose of this study was to determine the effectiveness of school based reproductive health education programmes on teenage pregnancy. The study adopted a cross-sectional explanatory design and was conducted in Mtwara Region, Tanzania covering four secondary schools. Respondents for the study were randomly selected. Data was collected using a pre-structured questionnaire, focus groups discussions and key informant interviews. A total of 156 individuals participated in the study. Findings from the study show that school based reproductive health education programmes were effective in terms of knowledge creation. Generally, the results show a significant (P≤ 0.001) difference in reproductive health education between intervention and non-interventions schools. In addition, significant differences were also observed between rural and urban non-intervention schools. It is therefore concluded that school based reproductive health education programmes are effective in knowledge creation among adolescent girls. Hence, it is recommended that a comprehensive school based reproductive health education programme (SBRHEP) be instituted in schools as a way of reducing teenage pregnancies and spread of sexually transmitted diseases (STI’s). However, for this to be more effective there is need for a standalone subject that only deals with reproductive health education rather than the status quo where it is offered under the biology subject.
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    Spatio-temporal analysis of changes in land use-land cover for conservation efficacy of urban forest reserve: the case of Rau Forest Reserve, Tanzania
    (East African Journal of Forestry & Agroforestry, 2022-12-01) Massawe, Goodluck; Abubakar, Ahmed; Sembosi, Solomon; Heita, Priscilla
    Changes in land use and land cover in different places around the globe have a significant impact on ecological structure and functions. Analysis of land use and land cover is useful in management activities, especially forest reserves as it reflects the interaction between adjacent communities and natural resources. We conducted a study to explore the changes in land use and land cover in the Rau Forest reserve to show the management status of this ecosystem which is also located in a nearby urban locality where management activities have been a challenge. The land use and cover (LULC) Spatio-temporal changes in the Rau Forest were classified as Densely Vegetation, Slightly Vegetation, Grassland, Bare land, Built-up, and Waterbodies to evaluate qualitative and quantitative changes in this reserve through the use of GIS techniques and tools over time (1990, 2000 and 2019). Landsat imageries for the year were used to identify the Spatio-temporal changes in vegetation in the area. We found that forest encroachment has driven changes in land use and land cover and transformed parts of the Rau Forest reserve into agricultural area settlements, and grazing lands which has ultimately led to gradual forest degradation. The results demonstrate the urgent need for strong and more severe regulations concerning the protecting the forest and involving local adjacent communities as they provide an extra layer of forest protection for the benefit of present and future generations.
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    Knowledge, attitude, and practices towards local chicken genetic resource conservation: insights from farmers in Igunga district, Tanzania
    (College of Social Sciences and Humanities, Sokoine University of Agriculture (SUA), 2022-07) Kapella, Lazaro E.; Nyanda, Suzana S.; Mahonge, Christopher P.
    There is a growing interest in understanding farmers’ awareness of the loss of local chicken (LC) genetic resources. Many studies on farmers’ behaviour change have concentrated more on LC productivity rather than conservation. The extent to which farmers are aware of the loss of LC c is unclear. A cross-sectional study was conducted in Igunga District in Tabora Region to assess the farmers’ knowledge, attitude and practices (KAP) level towards LC genetic resource conservation. Data were collected using a survey (n=384), focus group discussions (n=10) and key informants’ interviews (n=8). Content and descriptive statistical analyses were done using Atlasi.ti Version 7.5.7 and IBM SPSS version 25 computer software respectively. The index scale was computed to gauge the overall farmers’ knowledge, attitude and practice respectively. The findings show that; the majority of the farmers had an overall moderate knowledge (50.8%), neutral attitude (71.1%) and fair practice (54.4%). The findings indicated a significant association between knowledge and practice (p < 0.05) while a lack of association was found between attitude and practice (p > 0.05). Free-range production system, indiscriminate crossbreeding, inadequate supplementary feeding and feed quality, lack of performance records and limited veterinary inputs and services were reported as obstacles to attaining LC genetic resources conservation. The study recommends that the government collaborate with the development partners in fostering farmers’ KAP towards LC genetic resource conservation. It is for this reason that both knowledge and attitude as building blocks of practice should be increased through training and awareness campaigns focused on LC genetic resource conservation. To this end, it is vital to involve the community to attain sustainable LC genetic resource conservation in the study areas.
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    The contribution of incubation programmes to youth employment creation: a case of Sokoine university graduates entrepreneurs cooperative, Morogoro, Tanzania
    (Sokoine University of Agriculture, 2020) Donge, H.
    Globally, youth employment is a major issue with remarkable differences within regions and Tanzania is among the Sub-Saharan African countries facing youth unemployment. However, at times it is claimed that the youth are to be blamed for being lazy and less creative. But in reality, the youth are willing to work if a conducive environment is created to make them work or be innovative. Generally, incubation programmes are identified as sources of employment creation, wealth generation at local and national level and reduction of poverty in general. Incubation programmes generate a conducive environment for entrepreneurs at the early stage of lunching a venture by helping an entrepreneur reduce costs associated with starting a business venture. In addition, incubation increases confidence and capacity and linking the entrepreneur to the resources required to start an enterprise. Sokoine University Graduates Entrepreneurs Cooperative (SUGECO) is one of the incubation Programmes which offers selected participants an exciting opportunity to be mentored through the Youth Entrepreneur Incubation program located at Sokoine University of Agriculture, Morogoro. Therefore, the study aimed at evaluating how the SUGECO Incubation programme has been successful in enabling its incubatees not only to be self-employed but, also create employment for others. The study adopted a cross-sectional research design and a mixed methods approach whereby both quantitative and qualitative data were collected from SUGECO incubation center and its incubatees. A total of 88 respondents from SUGECO participated in the study, 43 males and 45 females. Primary data were collected using a questionnaire and in-depth interviews. Data collected through the questionnaire was coded and analyzed using IBM SPSS whereby descriptive statistics and inferential statistics were determined. Generally, study findings show that SUGECO supports young entrepreneur’s development and job creation in Tanzania. In addition, SUGECO transforms the minds of the youth using a business model that activates their innovative behavior, thus, making them more creative and entrepreneurial which in turn stimulate agribusiness development and creation of employment. The findings also show that SUGECO offers a variety of trainings which equip the incubatees with business management and employment skills. However, findings also show that SUGECO faces a number of challenges which include inadequate funding, lack of commitment among the incubatees, unsupportive government policies, quality of entrepreneurs and location specific challenges. Furthermore, binary logistic regression results show that out of the nine independent variables entered into the model only two variables i.e marital status and being trained in agribusiness were significantly (P≤ 0.05) associated with youth employment creation. Nonetheless, findings show that the graduates faced some challenges, the critical being lack of start-up capital. Other challenges faced are poor commitment, inadequate market access, insufficient working equipment and poor infrastructure, lack of confidence and patience, land access and poor supervision and coaching. Therefore, it is recommended that SUGECO adheres to its predefined criteria when selecting incubatees so as to recruit only the committed ones. In addition, the Government of Tanzania and Non-Governmental organizations such as should collaborate and place more support to promote SUGECO Agribusiness Incubation programme as it has show the potential for youth’s employment creation and poverty reduction.
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    The what, why and how of health literacy: a systematic review of literature
    (International Journal of Health, 2017) Muhanga, M.I; Malungo, J.R.S
    This paper reviews literature on the concept of health literacy. Specifically the paper reviews theoretical aspects on the concept (The What); the rationale behind health literacy and how important health literacy is towards attaining good health (The Why) plus tools and approaches towards measuring and assessing Health Literacy (The How). A documentary research method was used in collecting rele-vant information from sixty publications. Articles reviewed were from peer-reviewed journals, conference papers, health professional studies, research by recognized independent institutions as well as systematic and narrative reviews on the topic. The review concentrat-ed on literature published from 1970 to 2015 as the concept was developed around 1970s, excluding publications made before 1970s and non-English language publications. It is evident that the concept of Health Literacy has evolved from a basic description of the ability to perform health related tasks that require reading and computational skills, to cover cognitive capacities related to obtaining, processing, and understanding health information, leading up to decision making. There is a great need to have this particular concept and/ or process promoted taking into consideration the purposes, importance and rationale towards health care.
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    Social accountability and poverty reduction in Tanzania: a case of selected local government authorities
    (Tanzania Public Services College (TPSC), 2013-12) Marcossy, A. M.; Urassa, J. K.; Sinda, S. H.
    Accountability as a concept as per the Tanzania's central and Local Governments Authorities (LGA's) literally means the LGAs measure of compliance to government set guidelines and rules for financial, administrative and policy implementation as opposed to the public demand for accessibility to information, priority setting, peoples participation, public services and decision making. The practical evidence of failing development projects and programmes, deepening poverty, socio-economic inequalities and gender injustices present strong challenges, especially for initiatives under 'traditional' government approaches, resulting in demands for the rethinking of development. The current study mainly aimed at determining whether LGA's were socially accountable to their residents' thus contributing topoverty reduction. Specifically, the study aimed at assessing the LGA's budgetary allocation and utilization to the sectors of agriculture, health, education and infrastructure, which are important areas for poverty reduction. In collaboration with localpeople and their organizations and community groups, CSOs have been able to collect and analyze Council information deducting inefficiencies, lack of capacities, financial mismanagement; fund misuse, underutilization and under expenditures mostly on the development budget. These are some of the key indicators of lack of social accountability of the councils to the people they are supposed to serve. On the other hand, some Councils have indicated their willingness to account to localpeoples' concerns while addressing shortfalls and lack of capacity to implement what is expected of their dues.
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    Gendered impact assessment on food securing upgrading strategies: Results from Three methodological approaches
    (2017) Mnimbo, T. S.; Lyimo-Macha2, J.; Urassa, J.; Graef, F.
    In developing countries, rural women and men play different roles in guaranteeing food security for their households and communities. The gendered aspects of food security are visible along the four pillars of food security: availability, access, utilization and stability but one cause reported to hamper ineffectiveness is overlooking gender dynamics. Therefore this study aims to explore the gendered arguments towards food security by using different methodological tools while focusing on the food security criteria and the three sustainable development criteria (economic, social and environmental aspects). The specific objectives were to analyse differences between scientist and farmer perspectives in relation to the three upgrading strategies namely rainwater harvesting (RWH), improved processing, and household nutrition education and kitchen gardening) and to find out the difference in results when triangulating the tools on target group in order to set preferences in local contexts which helps to anticipate what measures would be needed to improve food security. The study used diverse assessment approaches namely a) a participatory stakeholder approach using the FoPIA tool (Framework for Participatory Impact Assessment) b) a scientific expert based approach using ScalA-FS (scaling up assessment-Food security tool), and c). Gender Analysis Matrix (GAM). Focus group discussions, key informant interviews and household survey were the main methods of data collection. The study found that female and male participants scored the criteria differently. Men considered social relations in the community and in the household more important for food security than women did. Women scored several productionrelated aspects as more important than men. Gender-based inequalities along the food value chain ‘from farm to plate’ that impede the attainment of food and nutritional security must therefore be addressed through effective gender responsive policies and programs.
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    Socio-economic factors influencing use of improved technologies by smallholder paddy farmers in Kilombero District, Tanzania
    (2017) Makingi, G.; Urassa, J. K.
    The study on which the paper is based was carried out in Kilombero district, Morogoro Region. Specifically it aimed at; identifying smallholder paddy farmers use of improved technologies (i.e. improved seeds and fertilizers) in their production; determining socio-economic factors influencing their use or none-use of the above, and identifying inputs access challenges faced by the farmers. To address the above a cross–sectional research design was adopted whereby data were collected only once. Simple random sampling was used to obtain 120 respondents, 40 from each of the selected villages. Data were collected using a structured questionnaire. Collected primary data was analyzed using the Statistical Package for Social Science (SPSS), whereby descriptive statistics such as frequencies and percentages were determined. In addition, a binary logistic regression model was used to determine association of some key socio-economic factors and farmers use of improved technologies. Generally, results from the logistic regression show that, availability of extension officers, involvement in other income generating activities, access to credit, household size, annual income, education level and farm size were significantly associated with the use of improved seeds and fertilizers. Results further show that, major technology use challenges faced by farmers were high inputs prices, poor availability of inputs, long distance to agro–input shops, lack of adequate input use knowledge and low quality inputs. Therefore, the paper recommends that, the Ministry of Agriculture, Local Government and other stakeholders work on ways to increase smallholder farmers’ access and use of improved technologies hence improvement of their paddy productivity. Key Words: Smallholder farmers, paddy, improved seeds, fertilizer
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    Access to reproductive health services and factors contributing to teenage pregnancy in Mtwara Region, Tanzania
    (2017) Dunor, H.; Urassa, J. K.
    Generally, adolescents/teenagers sexual and reproductive health (SRH) needs are largely unmet in developing countries despite this group’s size. This paper examines teenage girls’ accessibility to reproductive health services and factors contributing to teenage pregnancy. The study on which the paper is based adopted a crosssectional explanatory design and was conducted in Mtwara Region, Tanzania covering four secondary schools. Teenage girls in the four secondary schools were randomly selected to participate in the study. Data was collected using questionnaires, focus groups discussions and key informant interviews. A total of 156 people participated in the study. Quantitative data was analyzed using SPPS while qualitative data was analyzed using content analysis. Generally, results show that teenage pregnancy is a major problem in Mtwara and the attributing factors include poverty, culture, desire for money, peer pressure, lack of education on reproductive health issues and poor parental support. Results also show that teenagers in Mtwara lack access to youth friendly reproductive health services. Additionally, the findings show a disparity in terms of access to reproductive health services (RHS) between rural and urban teenage girls: those in the urban area had relatively more access compared with their rural counterparts. It is therefore concluded that access to reproductive health services for teenage girls is a serious challenge in Mtwara region. It is hereby recommended it is recommended that households be empowered to earn sufficient income to provide for their families, particular emphasis should be put on non-farm income generating activities. It is also recommended that youth friendly SRH services be established in the study areas; doing so will improve youth’s access to the same
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    Heifer In-trust schemes and incomes of smallholder households in the Highland and Semiarid regions of Tanzania
    (2015) Msangya, M. L.; Urassa, J. K.; Mahonge, C. P.
    Poor household incomes are a major challenge to smallholder farming households’ expenses in most of Tanzania Njombe and Shinyanga regions inclusive. The Heifer In-trust Schemes (HIS) were introduced in these regions purposely to enable vulnerable households to improve their food and income security hence raising such households’ purchasing power. The study’s main objective was to assess the role of the HIS to smallholder households’ major expenditures in the above-mentioned areas. Specifically, the study aimed at exploring the assets and income acquired through the beneficiary household’s involvement in the HIS and at examining their ability to meet children’s educational and households' health costs. The study adopted a cross-sectional design whereby data were collected from 402 randomly selected HIS beneficiaries’ households using a structured questionnaire. In addition, nine focus group discussions involving 135 discussants were conducted to complement information collected through the questionnaire. Children’s education, assets acquisition and food accounted for 36.2, 24.3 and 10.5% of the income accrued from the HIS dairy enterprise. The benefits in Njombe (a highland area) and Shinyanga (a semi-arid area) zones were similar.
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    The contribution of savings and credit cooperative societies to income poverty reduction: A case study of Mbozi District, Tanzania
    (2015-04-30) Kwai, M. D.; Urassa, J. K.
    This paper explores the contribution of Savings and credit cooperative societies (SACCOS) in reduction of rural households’ income poverty. Specifically, the paper looks at; activities undertaken by SACCOS that can lead to reduction of income poverty; comparing income levels between SACCO’s members and non-members; determining the impact of SACCOS to household’s income poverty reduction, and exploring community’s attitude towards SACCOS. A total of 160 respondents were involved in the study on which this paper is based; 80 SACCOS members and 80 non-members. Data were collected using a structured questionnaire, focus group discussions and key informant interviews. Quantitative data were analysed using SPSS where descriptive and inferential statistics were determined: qualitative data was analysed using content analysis. Study findings show that SACCOS perform different activities in the provision of financial and non-financial services to members. They provide shares, investment opportunities, savings, credit, and training on entrepreneurship skills. T-test analyses show a highly significant difference (p<0.001) between the two groups on income earned from agricultural activities and household expenditures; for the assets owned by household there was also a significant difference (p<0.05). Using MLR analysis, the impact of SACCOS to income poverty reduction was significant (p < 0.05). Generally, the respondents’ attitude towards SACCOS was favourable. The paper concludes that SACCOS play a significant role in improving the conditions of smallholder farmers. The paper recommends that SACCOS be empowered to enable them perform better and provide a range of services to members thereby helping beneficiaries to reduce their income poverty.
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    Farm households food production and households’ food security status: A Case of Kahama District, Tanzania
    (2014) Ngongi, A. M.; Urassa, J. K.
    Food is an important basic human need for survival, growth, and good health. Most rural households in Tanzania, Kahama district inclusive produce the food they consume. Despite this reality, a number of households in the district suffer from food insecurity. However, there are inequalities across the district’s ecological zones and administrative divisions. Therefore, the paper aims at determining how farming households in Kahama District cope with food insecurity. Specifically, the paper determines food security status based on Dietary Energy Consumed (DEC) per Adult Equivalent (AE) per day, identifies households’ food insecurity coping strategies and examines factors influencing food production and supply. The paper uses data collected through a survey of 150 randomly selected farm households in Msalala and Isagehe divisions. In addition, some qualitative information on crop production, food security situation and households’ food insecurity coping strategies was collected through focus group discussions (FDGs) conducted in the surveyed villages. Generally, observations based on the 24 hours recall and household income expenditure survey (HIES) indicate that food insecurity existed among households in the study areas based on the recommended average DEC/AE, of 2200 kcal and 2100 kcal respectively. Binary regression analysis results show that five predictors were significantly (P ≤ 0.05) associated with surveyed households’ food security/insecurity. Multiple regression analysis results further show that, total annual income, the amount of maize and paddy produced, household size, the number of plots owned, and the number of cattle owned significantly influenced the surveyed households’ food production and supply. Observations further show that most households rely on less preferred foods as a food insecurity copying strategy. The paper concludes that food insecurity existed among farming households in the study area. It is therefore recommended that, farming households adopt drought resistant food crops, diversify into off-farm income generating activities and that village extension officers (VEO’s) and communitY development officers (CDO’s ) play a more active role to enable households achieve food security.
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    The contribution of farmers’ organizations to smallholder farmers’ well-being: A case study of Kasulu district, Tanzania
    (2015-06) Msuta, B. P.; Urassa, J. K.
    Farmers’ Organizations’ (FOs) play a significant role as an institutional vehicle for promoting agricultural development through helping farmers solve common problems in relation to agricultural inputs, credit, technical knowledge and marketing of produce. All these services aim at improving farming activities and enabling them to gain economic benefits to sustain their well-being. Based on the above, this paper assessed the contribution of FOs to smallholder farmers’ well-being in Kasulu district. Specifically, the study assessed farmers’ perception towards FOs, identified goods and services accrued by farmers from the organizations, and the contribution of goods and services from the same to farmers’ well-being. A cross-sectional research design was employed whereby data was collected from 160 randomly selected farm households. Primary data was collected using a prestructured questionnaire with both open and close-ended questions. Both quantitative and qualitative information was collected. Observations from the study showed that FOs contributed positively to their members’ well-being. Generally, FO’s members had a relatively higher income compared to the nonmembers, based on t-test analysis; the difference was shown to be statistically significant. Generally, the results indicated that extension services and the use of inorganic fertilizers and pesticides were positively associated with a household’s income and assets ownership. Therefore, it is recommended that, rural farm households be encouraged to form or join farmers’ organizations as these have a great potential of solving their problems.
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    The contribution of small scale dairy farming to community welfare: A case study of Morogoro Municipality
    (eSAP, 2017) Urassa, J. K.; Raphael, E.
    A socio-economic survey was conducted in Morogoro Municipality to study the contribution of the small-scale dairy farming to the welfare of the community. The main focus was on the identification of the production level of milk from the dairy cows, amount of income earned by the dairy farmers, items on which income from the dairy enterprise is spent and the constraints faced by the small-scale dairy farmers. A total of thirty seven smallholder dairy farmers from Morogoro Municipality were selected at random and were interviewed using structured questionnaire. Information on daily milk yield per cow and the amount sold by each household was collected through the questionnaire. Information was also collected on the contribution of the dairy enterprise to the family income, level of education of the respondents, employment status of respondents and constraints associated with the dairy enterprise as identified by the farmers. Results from the study show that about two thirds of the respondents had some formal employment and about a quarter (24.3) were involved in business. All the respondents reported the dairy enterprise to be an income supplementing activity to the household. The average milk yield for the respondents ranged between 6-10 litres per cow per day. Average milk production per farmer per day was 22 litres whereas the average daily income earned by the respondents was 3,950/= Tshs. The results from the study show that the dairy enterprise was mainly a male domain (94.6%) whereas only 5.4 percent were women. The major constraints experienced by the respondents in this study were lack of land and high costs of supplementary feeds as reported by 32.4% and 21.6% respectively. Other constraints included, diseases, lack of adequate capital, and theft of animals, milk market and death of animals, which were reported by less than 20% of the respondents. The study observed that income from the dairy enterprise was used to meet costs of various items including; buying food, paying for health services, school fees, purchase of new assets, paying bills for water and electricity and building houses. It can be concluded from this study that small-scale dairy farming has a potential of improving the welfare of households. In order to protect, promote and develop the smallholder dairy enterprise in Morogoro Municipality and elsewhere there is need for the farmers to form co-operative societies, which could assist them to acquire more capital needed in improving dairy production, and also seek markets for their milk. The Government should also improve the infrastructure for milk marketing so that smallscale dairy farming could contribute towards poverty alleviation
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    Factors contributing to irregular migration: A case of Kasulu District, Tanzania
    (2017-06) Magweiga, R. S.; Urassa, J. K.
    Despite the fact that irregular migrants (IRMs) have often been facing a lot of challenges in sustaining their livelihood in Kasulu District, yet in recent years, there has been an increase of IRMs from within and outside Kasulu District in search of casual labour in the local community. The study therefore was undertaken in four villages in Kasulu, Kitanga, Kagera-Nkanda, Mvugwe and Nyachenda. Specifically, the study aimed to determine the driving factors of irregular migration, to assess smallholder farmer’s attitude towards IRMs, and finally, to identify how the IRMs are affected by their interaction with smallholder farmers in Kasulu District. The study on which the paper is based used a cross- sectional research design whereby data was collected at one point and time. The study employed random sampling, purposive and snowball sampling techniques to get 120 respondents. Data were collected using a questionnaire, key informant interviews, focus group discussions and direct observations. Quantitative data were analysed using statistical package for social science (SPSS) whereby descriptive statistics were determined. Qualitative data were analysed using content analysis. The results show social, cultural, economical and political factors are responsible for the irregular migration observed in Kasulu District. It is thus recommended that, the immigration department and other security organs working along the border should establish several entry posts either permanently or mobile along the country borders to deter IRMs and ease visa issuance process for those migrants wishing to enter the country legally.
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    Factors influencing maize crop production at household levels: A case of Rukwa Region in the southern highlands of Tanzania
    (2015-03-05) Urassa, J. K.
    Production of staple food occupies an important part in Sub-Saharan Africa’s agricultural production. Maize crop in particular is the most important staple food in this area. The article mainly examines households’ socio-economic characteristics affecting maize production in Rukwa in the context of the market reforms carried out in Tanzania in the mid 1980’s. Rukwa region is one of Tanzania’s most reliant maize producers. The article explores the importance of maize to household’s crop production, its production levels and the determinants of its productivity. A number of specific issues are explored including the importance of factors such as farm size, education, and access to key inputs such as seeds, fertilizers and agricultural extension services. The study on which the article is based uses data collected from three districts of Rukwa. The findings showed that maize crop continues to play an important role in most households’ livelihood. However, the crop production levels were low. Education was observed to be an important factor in raising yields, suggesting that non-agriculture policies may also be important for improving productivity and welfare of farmers. Despite the importance of maize crop to household livelihoods, several constraints were reported to hinder its productivity including access to fertilizers, improved seeds and other chemical inputs necessary for higher production, and extension services. Therefore, efforts need to be taken by both the local and central government to raise households maize productivity and hence increase the possibility of improving their well-being.