Effects of Climate Change on Women's Socio-Economic Development in Mwea East Sub-County, Kirinyaga County, Kenya

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Tangaza University College
Climate change has had adverse impacts on people’s lives and the economies of nations across the globe. This research examined effects of climate change on socio-economic development of women in Mwea East sub County, Kirinyaga County. The study was conducted in Ngucwi sub Location, Murinduko Ward, Mwea East sub County, Kirinyaga County. The study explored how climate change events continue to threaten food security, health and income levels among women. The study used descriptive research design and integrated qualitative and quantitative approaches. The researcher used purposive sampling to select Mwea East sub County in Kirinyaga County which has experienced frequency and severity of climate change events of drought. Cluster sampling was used to divide the sample among the different villages. Systematic random sampling was used to select households in each village. Out of the population of 38,734 women of ages 18 years to 69 years; a sample size of 449 was calculated. A semi-structured questionnaire was also used to collect data. Additionally, key informant interviews and focus group discussions were used to gather qualitative information. Quantitative data from questionnaires was analysed using descriptive statistics and regression analysis while thematic and content analysis was used to analyse qualitative data. The study found that climate change was negatively related to food security, a relationship which was statistically significant. The study further found that climate change had a positive relationship with women's health issues but this was insignificant. However, climate change was found to be negatively and significantly related to women’s income. The study findings may provide policy and decision-makers with useful information to guide the design of appropriate social-economic programmes to protect women from the adverse effects of climate change. The study recommends ways in which women in Mwea East sub County can participate more actively in mitigation and adaptation programmes of climate change effects.