Participation in community based natural resource management programme and effects on welfare of rural families in Ikwerre, Rivers State, Nigeria
The study was on participation in Community Based Natural Resource Management Programme (CBNRMP) and its socio-economic effect on rural families in Ikwerre Area, Rivers State Nigeria. A structured questionnaire was administered to 60 beneficiaries of the programme. Data collected were subjected to descriptive and inferential statistics. Findings of their income before programme intervention indicated that they earned ₦15,100- ₦22,600 while a tremendous increase in income was observed after the programme’s intervention where most (70%) of them earned ₦ 102,000.00 and above. The multiple regression coefficient (R2) was 0.9215 which indicated that direct relationship exists between participation and socio-economic characteristics of the respondents. Participation in the Community Based Natural Resource Management Programme had empowered the beneficiaries in problem identification, ways of seeking for solution, project planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of projects and making of decisions in issues that pertain to their welfare and development. CBNRMP programme had impacted greatly on the welfare of participants in areas such as household items, saving/ investments and increase in livestock herds. However, beneficiaries’ were faced with some constraints which include: insufficient capacity building, insufficient storage facilities and inaccessibility to micro credit. The study therefore recommended that more emphasis should be on capacity building of beneficiaries of the programme, adequate provision of production inputs such as access to credit, farm inputs such as seeds and seedlings, fertilizers and reduction in cost of inputs should be taken into cognizance and proper mainstreaming of target beneficiaries of the programme intervention.
Keywords: Participation, effect, community resources, families