Linking farmers’ access to rural radio, gender and livelihoods:case study of rice processors in Benin Espérance Zossou PhD Student, Rural Economy for Development, ULg, Gembloux Agro-Bio-Tech Simplice Vodouhè, Paul Van Mele, Philippe Lebailly Third IAALD Africa Chapter Conference 21st May 2012 – 23rd May 2012 EMPERORS PALACE, JOHANNESBURG, GAUTENG, SOUTH AFRICA
1. Introduction• Benin is a sub-Saharan African developing country that has noted a growth of rural radio stations over the past few decades as part of a broader process of democratisation
1. Introduction• Traditional roles of disseminating technologies are proving insufficient in today’s global context• Benin is characterized by rurality (58% pop) and where 66.4% of the population is illiterate• Thus, rural radio appeared more appropriate as they broadcast in the local language =>• Opportunity research-extension-farmer linkages• This study investigates interactions between access to rural radio, gender & livelihood assets.
2. Methodology• The study was conducted in north & south Benin• We interviewed 18 rural radio station staff• We then interacted with rice processors in 12 villages (6 north & 6 south) randomly selected• Qualitative data collection (focus groups)• Quantitative data collection: randomly selection 240 rice processors (20 per village) for individually interview
2. Methodology• Sustainable livelihood approach (SLA) – Alternative to new questions in poverty analysis (monetary) – Capabilities, assets, goods & activities necessary to welfare – sustainability => adaptation to difficulties, adversity, without compromising natural resources base & future generations – Theoretical framework = multiples dimensions: economic, social, cultural & institutional welfare
2. Methodology• Then SL framework with 120 randomly selected processors (10 per village) from 240 to get each rice processor’s capital stocks• The respondents rated their capital stocks identified for the surveyed year on a 0-5 scale• Spider diagram to visualize the 5 capitals with 0 value (no stock) at the centre & value 5 (full satisfaction ) at the other extreme of the axe.• Median & Mann Whitney test for differences visible men / women & listen to / not listen to
3.1 Rural radio and agriculture• 72% rural radios have institutional contracts with Ministry Agriculture for broadcasts on agriculture• 40% monthly programs relate to agriculture & environment• Rural radio stations broadcasts on development issues with local & international NGOs• Broadcasts on agriculture are deferred or live• Live broadcasts often interactive => opportunity to famers to call & intervene by phone
3.1. Rural media and agriculture Characteristics of radio stations visited during the surveyDenomination Localisation Type of rural radio Estimated people reachedPlateau FM Pobè, South-Benin Private/commercial 629 881FM Alakétou Kétou, South-Benin Community 1.345.803Radio Adja-Ouèrè Adja-Ouèrè, South-Benin Private/commercial -La voix de la Vallée Adjohoun, South-Benin Community 284 213Ahémé FM Possotomè, South-Benin Community 554 478Mono FM Lokossa, South-Benin Private/commercial 483 946La voix de Lokossa Lokossa, South-Benin Private/commercial -Couffo FM Azovè, South-Benin Private/commercial -Radio rurale de Lalo Lalo, South-Benin Public 555 662Radio Tonassé Covè, South-Benin Private -Radio rurale Ouaké Ouaké, North-Benin Public 33 695Radio rurale Tanguiéta Tanguiéta, North-Benin Public 163 108Nanto FM Natitingou, North-Benin Community 68 869Kuffè FM Bassila, North-Benin Community 126 379Nonsina FM Bembereke, North-Benin Community 474 174Kandi FM Kandi, North-Benin Community 140 640Bani Ganse Banikoara, North-Benin Public 179 769Fara’a Gya, North-Benin/Niger Pricate/commercial -
3.1 Rural radio and agriculture• Extension services criticised for failing to reach majority farmers & communicate successfully in developing countries (Chapman et al., 2003)• Local extension agents think rural radio can help them to reach millions of illiterate farmers• Partnerships farmers-extension-research can help to develop new knowledge, skills & attitudes towards collaborative learning• Requires efforts as communicating agriculture involves multiple skills & positive mindset towards working with farmers.
3.1 Rural radio and agriculture• Main constraints rural radio stations expressed are: – Need for capacity building on agricultural subjects and – Insufficiency of agricultural research material: broadcast scripts on agricultural subjects• Van Mele et al. (2010) presents some ways farmer- to-farmer videos can strengthen radio broadcasters knowledges
3.2 Rice processors’ access to rural radio• In survey sample mostly women (67%), illiterate (87% women & 53% of men), married, with 8 persons on average in the household• 87% of men compared to 66% of women have their own radio set• Main reason not have own radio set = lack of financial resources for men and indeed the household literate will appropriate it for women• Majority of those who did not have their own radio set listened to the radios of their parents
3.2 Rice processors’ access to rural radio Figure 1: Level of rice processors access to radio according to gender• Men & women have good access to radio• Men have more access to the radio compared to women• Reason: more men have their own radio sets Figure 2: Frequency with which rice processors listen to• More men than women listen to radio broadcasts in general rural radio broadcasts daily• Reason: men are more owners of radio sets & less occupied in rural area than women (domestic activities)
3.2 Rice processors’ access to rural radio Figure 3: Frequency with which rice processors listen to rural radio program on agriculture• No real gender differences with regard to listening to agricultural broadcasts• Major reason rarely/never listen to agriculture program = schedules inappropriateness• Appropriate time proposed = 8- 9 pm because busy whole day Figure 4: Reasons why rice processors rarely or never listen to radio program on agriculture• Radio & development agents may consider this major problem• This will enable more farmers to listen to radio programs• Majority think programs are interesting
3.3 Radio programs on agriculture, gender and livelihood assets
3.3 Radio programs on agriculture, gender and livelihood assets• Focus group for description 5 capitals highlighted: – Financial capital: incomes; activity extend; access to formal & informal MFI; rate of saving; & financial resources – Social capital: working in groups; relation with local authorities & development agents, cohesion , solidarity and information exchange. – Human capital: knowledge, health, happiness and skill – Natural capital: Forest, hydrological resources, cultivated land & climate – Physical capital: communication equipments, roads, drinking water, hospitals and public services
3.3 Radio programs on agriculture, gender and livelihood assets• Rice processors who often Capital stocks recorded for rice processors according to listen to and not listen to rural radio program on agriculture listen to radio program on agriculture have better financial, social & human capital comparing to those who rarely/never listen to• Participatory Radio Campaigns are widely listened to and can have a significant measurable impact on knowledge and practice in farming communities (Hambly Odame, 2003)• Future studies will need to be F = Financial Capital, S = Social Capital, H = Human made for real impact Capital, N = Natural Capital, P = Physical Capital. a = Mann Whitney test significant (p≤0.05); b = non significant
4. CONCLUSION• Rural radio can be an extension tool to reach millions of illiterate farmers and to provide them with information relating to all aspects of agricultural production, processing and marketing in a language they understand.• But most rural radio stations expressed their concerns that they did not have sufficient knowledge of agriculture in order to deliver appropriate messages.
4. CONCLUSION• Although partnerships with government staff from research and extension services partly helped to address this, interactivity with farmers needs to be revised (broadcasts between 8-9 pm (after office hours).• But most rural radio stations expressed their concerns that they did not have sufficient knowledge of agriculture in order to deliver appropriate messages.
4. CONCLUSION• Expertise could be equally drawn from other sources, such as from farmers within their own or other rural communities, and from farmer-to- farmer training videos.• Future efforts need to seek synergies between various media.• Access Agriculture is a new initiative that addresses these challenges by building farm- relevant knowledge among multiple rural service providers.
Acknowledgements• This study has been financed by the Belgian Technical Cooperation (BTC), the International Foundation for Science (IFS) and the Government of Japan through AfricaRice• We are grateful to Felix Houinsou for his support during the field research & all surveyed farmers• We are grateful to the CTA that kindly supported my participation to this conference