Rural women accessibility to water resources and their resilience to the resources variability: case study of Muheza District, Tanga Region

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Sokoine University of Agriculture


The geographic location, landscape nature and hydrology make Muheza District the base catchment for Tanga, Korogwe, Pangani and Handeni Districts. Considering this, the study on how rural women in the face of climate change and anthropogenic activities on one hand, and national water policies and the Millennium Goals on the other, access water resources and manage its variability was executed. The district was represented by five purposefully selected villages namely, Kwelumbizi, Kizerui, Misalai, Kazita and Mgambo during the study conducted from December 2017 to April 2018. The study used Escherichia coli and total coliform as biological indicators of water quality whereas pH, and total dissolved solids and temperature were used as chemical and physical indicators of water quality, respectively. Biological data were collected by growing both Escherichia coli and total coliform from 216 water samples in the Incubator dgtl w/auto for twelve hours under 3MTMPetrifilmTM coliform count plates subjected to 440C and 370C, respectively. Colonies grown were counted by VHX Digital Microscope while pH was measured using digital ODM pH meter, and total dissolved solids measured using Mettler Toledo's TDS meter. The social aspects were collected using a combination of three techniques: questionnaire surveys, interview with key informants and focus group discussions. The findings indicated that communities face a number of constraints related to water collection especially during dry seasons, including low quality water as exhibited by unacceptable levels of coliform bacteria and pH level for acidic water. This study underscores the fact that sustainable utilization of water resources in Muheza Rural District is necessary as its hydrology is vital to the neighboring districts in Tanga Region and Tanga Municipality. Conducting another study to assess whether communities may have been affected by the coliform bacteria and whether the acidic water could have or may affect community healthy in the future is recommended.


Msc. Dissertation


Water resources, Resources variability resilience, Landscape nature, Muheza District, Tanga Region, Water quality, Escherichia coli, Total coliform