Access to climate change information and support services by the vulnerable groups in semi-arid Kenya for adaptive capacity development
AbstractWomen and the elderly living in semi-arid environments of Kenya are vulnerable to the frequent exposure to impacts of changing climate and need to access climate information and support services to build their adaptive capacity. This study characterised the channels through which these vulnerable people (women aged 24 to 60 years; elderly men and women aged at least 65 years) in a semi arid area of Kenya access climate information and support services from data collected from randomly selected sample in cross sectional survey using structured questionnaire. Over 70% of both women and the elderly perceived change in rainfall, drought, floods, human and livestock diseases to have been “severe” to “very severe” over the last five years. Majority of women (68.8.5%)
most preferred radio while the elderly (83%) most preferred indigenous knowledge to access climate information and support services. Women consistently rated radio higher (P<0.05) than the elderly for delivering reliable information, explaining details and use of local language understood to them. However, Principal Component Analysis (PCA) indicated that comprehensive informing on climatic hazards and support services for adaptation to changing climate is from extension service unlike the other channels which delivered information only on climatic hazards. The study concluded that combination of extension agents, radio and local administration would be more effective for disseminating climate information and support services to vulnerable people in marginal
areas. Capacity building for extension service is needed in interpretation of weather data to enable them effectively disseminate climate information and support services to vulnerable people of arid and semi-arid environments.