Influence of drought coping strategies on the social ecological well-being of pastoral communities in Kakuma and Oropoi locations in Turkana County, Kenya
Mawaa, Godfrey Ekato
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The nomadic pastoralists in Turkana have developed coping mechanisms to protect themselves from the long-term effects of droughts that decimate livestock which forms their primary source of livelihood. Turkana is suffering from water scarcity disrupting routine activities like small scale farming. This study aimed to assess the effects of drought coping strategies on the socioecological wellbeing of the pastoralists in Turkana West Sub County. The study objectively sought to determine the influence of livelihood diversification; evaluate the influence of remittances to the households; determine the influence of credit access; assess the influence of collective action and investigate the influence of food relief and NGO interventions on the socioecological wellbeing of the households in Kakuma and Oropoi locations in Turkana West sub-county, Turkana County. The study employed the use of a descriptive research design targeting a population of 115,134 (23,048 households) respondents. The study used cluster sampling to select a sample size of 273. The study adopted questionnaires for data collection and utilised descriptive and inferential data analysis methods to analyse the collected data. The results showed that three independent variables had positive and significant influence on the socioecological wellbeing, namely credit access (ß= .151, t= 2.519, p < .05), collective action (ß= .160, t= 2.667, p=0.008) and food relief and NGO/government interventions (ß= .722, t= 17.195, p=0.001). On contrary, livelihood diversification (ß= -.051, t (272) = -.846, p>0.05) and remittances to the households (ß= .100, t= 1.658, p>.05) had no significant influence on socioecological wellbeing. The study concluded that credit access, collective actions and food relief and NGO/government interventions are coping strategies that could be adopted as best practices to improve the socioecological wellbeing of pastoral households in Kakuma and Oropoi locations. Identification and ranking of factors influencing the choice of drought coping strategies will have a significance in the adoption of these best practices for better drought preparedness and mitigation measures. Therefore, the study recommends that credit access be made easier for the people in these locations. People in this region should engage in more diverse livelihoods. In partnership with the national government and other stakeholders such as religious factions, the county government should promote active community collective action for better drought preparedness.
Africa Nazarene University