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Climate shocks and women’s livelihood in Zimbabwe: A case study on the impact of Cyclone Idai in Chimanimani District

Douglas Marowa, Angeline Musiya

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J. Bio. Env. Sci.20(1), 166-183, January 2022

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Abstract

Climate shocks in Zimbabwe have been of worry to the sustenance of women livelihoods. The study sought to assess climate shocks and women’s livelihood in Chimanimani. To recommend for future gender sensitive adaptation and mitigation measure. Positivist and interpretivist paradigm, mixed research design were used. Used sample of 1,464 women, questionnaires, interviews, direct observation and focus groups for data collection. Findings, women were actively engaged in agricultural and heavily affected by the cyclone. No special considerations for women livelihoods. Adaptation strategies were early recovery, conservation agriculture, water harvesting, climatic resilience crops and environmental education. The provision of food aid as emergency phase, cash for work, and food for work or assets. Noted mitigation were use of organic fertilisers to reduce greenhouse gases, improved cropping, grazing and agro-forestry practices. To increase biomass productivity and carbon sequestration, it was also noted that there is now more reinforcement on forestry legislation to reduced deforestation and promotion of afforestation/reforestation. Noted was policy gaps in a gender based approach to climate shocks resilience and preparedness, as there was a clear exhibition of ignorance on the fundamentals of gender based approaches to climate chock resilience, mitigation and preparedness in District. Recommend need to consolidate and mainstream policies in harmonizing the sustainability of women livelihoods in climate shock resilience undertakings and preparedness. Establishment of climate smart technology and investing in breeding drought resilient crop varieties. Gender mainstream of women livelihoods in climate shock resilience. Increased developmental initiatives on capacity building and to strengthen environmental education programmes.

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