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Farmers’ perception of water contribution to household and farming system in the Offinso North District of Ghana: rainfall a critical climatic factor

Mercy A.A. Derkyi
Nana S.A. Derkyi
Anthony Baidoo


Water resources are increasingly under pressure from population growth, economic activity, and climate change/variability. Using survey and community meetings, the paper analyzed water resources accessible to three farming communities in the Offinso North District and the effects of rainfall changes on their farming livelihood. The study revealed that the households depended on water from three sources, namely: groundwater through boreholes for drinking and domestic use; surface water through streams for drinking, domestic use and irrigating vegetable farms and atmospheric water (i.e. rainfall) for farming. For about 80% of the respondents, changes in rainfall pattern adversely affected their crops yield which has implication on their livelihoods. Access to irrigation facilities was virtually absent. Also, the non-application of water harvesting techniques for farming thus left these smallholder farmers to the ‘mercies of the weather’. Education on climate change and adaptation strategies coupled with technological know-how on water management is recommended for the communities in this forest-savanna transition zone where abrupt changes in rainfall pattern are new to their livelihoods.

Keywords: Water Resources, Rainfall, Climate Change, Farming Households, Farm Productivity

Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 0855-6768
print ISSN: 0855-6768