Farmers Awareness and Response to Climate Change: A Case Study of the North Bank Region, The Gambia

Cynthia Kutir, Bernard N. Baatuuwie, Sainey Keita, Musa Sowe


Rain-fed agriculture, which is the backbone of most sub-Saharan economies is seriously under threat due to climate change. Consequently, for farmers to sustain their livelihoods and increase productivity, there is the need for them to be aware of climate change and how they can sustainably respond to it. This study focused on farmers’ awareness of climate change and their response to its effect in the North Bank Region of The Gambia. Data for the study was collected from 258 farmer household heads selected through a multi-stage sampling technique and 9 focus group discussions. Descriptive statistics and climate change awareness index (CCAI) were used to analyze the data obtained from the households. The findings revealed that majority (80.6%) of the farmers were aware of climate change with an average awareness index of 0.586 (58.6%). Also, an overwhelming majority of 93.41% of the farmers used crop diversifications, drought resistant cultivars, early maturing varieties among others as response strategy to climate change. The study concludes that farmers in the study area are fairly aware of climate change. Farmers are recommended to form farmer associations to enable easy access to more climate change education/ training from Donor and Government agencies to improve their climate change knowledge and enhance their adaptive capacity.

Keywords: Climate change, Response, Climate change Awareness Index, The Gambia

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