The effect of rural livelihood support initiatives on the sustainability of livestock farming in Meru South District
Ithiga, Naftaly Mwaniki
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Successful adoption, sustainability and growth of Livestock related rural livelihood support initiatives by the Kenya Government and NGOs in Meru South District of Kenya's Eastern Province is dependent on various factors. These include training, structure and governance of projects, weather patterns, marketing, Government support and community involvement. The main objective of the study was to get farmers inputs on how these factors affect them within the target population and also come up with recommendations on how these challenges can be addressed. The initiatives under study are the ones especially carried out by MKEPP-NRM, an NGO operating in the area in conjunction with Government departments using an integrated approach. Livestock related projects fall within the rural livelihood support component of this approach. The research methodology used in the study is descriptive in nature. Such a study, according to Donald and Pamela (1998) is concerned with finding out why and how a phenomenon manifests itself in a certain setting. Both primary and secondary data have been used in the study. A structured questionnaire was the main tool used for primary data collection. Secondary data was drawn from various reports, e.g. DVO Meru south annual report for 2008 and publications from libraries. The approach used is quantitative, as described by Mugenda and Mugenda (2003). This provides for numerical description of the issues under investigation. Pre-testing of the questionnaire prior to the actual data collection was done on five study subjects in order to refine the questionnaire. The data collected was then analyzed using SPSS analysis tools and Ms excel after initial entering using Ms Access. Presentation of data has been done using tables, bar graphs and pie-charts which made it easier for the quantitative analysis of the responses received from the respondents and their possible interpretations. Saunders M. et al (2007) articulates these and other methods of data collection and analysis. The study endeavoured to get answers to the research questions identified, after which conclusions and recommendations on the way forward were drawn.