Comparative study of livelihood strategies and food security of recent migrants and non migrants in Kilombero valley

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Sokoine University of Agriculture


This study compared the livelihood strategies of two communities in Kilombero Valley, following the coming of agro-pastoralists with large herds of cattle. These are the indigenous peasants and the migrant agro-pastoralists. The study used cross sectional design employing both random and purposive sampling to obtain the respondents. The study used Dietary Diversity Score and anthropometric assessments of the under-five children. Results show that the proportion of households with DDS below the median of 6 scores in a scale of 12 is 74%. The peasants had mean DDS of 5.2 which is lower than 6.8 of agro-pastoralists. The wasting rate among peasant children is 6.06% which is much higher than 5.3% of Morogoro Region. The agro-pastoral children have higher stunting rate of 51% but similar rates of wasting and underweight with the Morogoro Region and National averages. However the anthropometric assessment of this study showed that the peasant children are nutritionally better compared with the agro-pastoral children. Livelihood assets like natural resources, education of household spouses, tradition and culture of the people have shown to be among significant factors affecting food and nutrition security. It is therefore recommended that some detrimental cultures be abolished as they impede efforts to achieve the desired livelihood outcomes. Diversification of income sources other than selling food crops or agricultural labour is an important strategy to increase people's resilience to shocks and to protect them against the current fragility. Various organisations operating in the valley should establish programs to turn around the attitudes of people towards good feeding habits like diversifying diets and paying attention to the special requirements of vulnerable members of the household like children and lactating or pregnant mothers. To achieve this, emphasis on female education should be an indispensable element of future development programs in the valley.



Livelihood strategies, Food security, Migrants, Non migrants, Agro-pastoralists, Cattle, Kilombero valley