Filmed in the Gambia, this video shows what was found out about girl's education as a result of using PRA.
This report provides an assessment of the extent of and changes in poverty in Kenya during the '80s and early '90s. It uses data from different sources and of different kinds, including was a Participatory Poverty Assessment (PPA) and a Welfare Monitoring Survey (WMS). Interestingly, in three out of five districts the results yielded by the two approaches were almost identical. The PPA provided critical insights on a number of issues - people's perceptions of the extent and causes of poverty, the status of women, the extent of and reasons for low school enrolment, the reasons for not using public health facilities and the ways in which poor people cope with food insecurity and drought. Methods used included social mapping and wealth ranking, interviews and focus groups discussions. The different chapters present the findings of the study, focusing on economic development and poverty; revitalising the rural economy; structural transformation in agriculture; social sector spending (education and health); food security and nutrition; and targeted programmes and institutional factors. A strategy of programmes and policies for poverty reduction is suggested.
The Participate initiative involves 18 organisations, who work with diverse marginalised people in over 30 countries, coming together to make their voices count on development policy. This anthology is an account of the activities carried out by the Participatory Research Group (PRG) within the Participate initiative between 2012 and 2014, and also a reflection on the methods and processes created and utilised during that time. It aims to share the insights and lessons learnt to help promote thought and discussion about how to use participatory approaches to influence policy at a variety of levels. These experiences include: applying, adapting and innovating participatory methods to promote the voices of participants in all stages of the research process; creating opportunities and spaces for including the perspectives articulated through the research where possible in the policymaking processes; and embedding participatory approaches in local-to global policymaking processes.
This paper reports on the experiences gained through the application of wealth ranking techniques in Zimbabwe. It is a study of household economics and livestock production. It considers the tools used; the results, historical, ecological and gender contrasts; the process of wealth ranking; and its usefulness as a RRA tool.
Two RRAs, each lasting five days, were carried out in two villages in the North of Cameroon, a CARE Canada project area. LEARN (Local Environmental Analysis and Assessment of Rural Needs) type of RRA was used to focus on the environmental problems. None of the team had used LEARN in the field, so this was very much a training exercise, with an honest account of failings as well as successes. A checklist covering "what needs to be known", "indicators" and "methods to be used" formed the basis for guiding activities, choosing respondents and topics of discussion. Field activities are described in detail, and methods (especially interviewing techniques) analysed. Specific characteristics of LEARN are evaluated, as well as the "reliability and representativeness" of the information gained. Findings of the research are given in sections 6 - 12 : sections 1 - 4 are devoted to methodology and training aspects.
Based on findings from participatory studies, beneficiary assessments and on quantitative survey data, this paper examines farmers' perceptions of the constraints being faced by them in agricultural production, including the quality of agricultural services. Coping strategies adopted by farmers as a consequence of the agricultural policy changes in Zambia in the 1990's are also outlined.
The semi-structured interview is a vital tool in rapid rural appraisal, and one for which a number of guidelines have been drawn up. It is an important way of furthering our understanding of the lives of rural people, but it needs to be understood by its practitioners. It is argued that it can contain an inherent bias which often conflicts with the understanding rural people have of the nature of knowledge and information, and therefore the meaning of questions and answers. In a Sudanese example, though interviews with key informants indicated that relief seed had been fairly distributed, further interviews with other members of the community showed that seed had not been distributed equitably to all groups throughout the area. Other examples of interviews in Somalia and Ethiopia are presented and the article concludes that mis-hearing can be corrected by further probing, verification and interpretation.
In the past, poverty alleviation programmes have been implemented with limited involvement of poor people in determining the mode of intervention. PRA has been used in recent times to highlight the poor peoples' own perspective of poverty. This paper presents some of the experiences in sub-Saharan Africa.
This manual has been developed for facilitators working on ActionAid's pilot literacy programme in Bundibugyo, Uganda. Following on from the Freirian model of literacy teaching, the programme has introduced PRA techniques to strengthen the discussion stage. Rather than having a literacy primer, the course is based on thirty units each of which uses a specific PRA technique (eg Hungry Season Calendar) together with visual "symbol cards" to generate discussion. Each unit includes an information section (eg how to build a maize store) and details on how to teach the key word. Practical teaching tips, such as timing and what to do about drop-outs, are covered as well as the theoretical questions, what is literacy? and why teach literacy? The appendices include illustrated examples of PRA activities and "symbol cards", ideas for post literacy, indicators for monitoring progress and criteria for recruiting facilitators.
The PRA exercise described in this paper was part of an FAO PRA training workshop which was carried out at a time when local people were experiencing one of the worst droughts of the century. Matrix scoring, semi-structured interviews, seasonal food calendars and preference ranking were some of the techniques which were used during the workshop. The exercise highlighted the central importance of livestock to the village economies. The visual methods brought to the surface hidden problems, priorities, preferences and uses of livestock, and helped with deeper probing of issues which were important to the villagers.