Coping Strategies

People living in areas with agroclimatic seasonality have developed different strategies to cope with the environmental challenge. The earliest and most successful are aimed at maintaining an adequate level of food stocks, but when these fail, other more costly strategies are put in place and their presence indicates that a crisis is occurring.

The negative effects of seasonality can be prevented to a certain extent by selecting the appropriate crops, namely by using varieties with a shorter vegetative period and lower demand for water and by using reserve crops such as root crops, leguminous plants, and groundnuts. Manioc (Manihot esculenta) is used as a reserve crop in the Guinean zone, enset (E. ventricosum, false banana) is used in southern Ethiopia, and groundnuts (Arachis Hypo-gaea) in Sahel. Reliance on a single crop is highly risky, as failure of the crop due to a pest, a natural

60 50 40

60 50 40

Agriculture

Social and personal activities/school

Agriculture

Social and personal activities/school

Moving, walking

Daily activities

Domestic chores

Handicraft, trading

Males

Rainy

Postharvest

Harvest

Preharvest

Males

Rainy

Postharvest

Harvest

Preharvest

□ Agriculture

■ Other income-generating

□ Leisure/social

□ Domestic chores/hygiene

10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100 % of daily time (min)

10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100 % of daily time (min)

□ Agriculture

■ Other income-generating

□ Leisure/social

□ Domestic chores/hygiene

Females

Females

0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100 % of daily time (min)

Figure 3 (A) Time allocation of Senegal rural adolescents in different seasons. (Data from Benefice E, Garnier D, and Ndiaye G (2004) European Journal of Clinical Nutrition 58(2): 292-301.) (B) Time allocation of a Thai rural population in different seasons. Duration of daytime activities (night sleeping excluded) in four seasons. (Data from Murayama N and Ohtsuka R (1999) European Journal of Clinical Nutrition 53(1): 39-49.)

disaster, or war may lead to permanent indebtedness and poverty. In areas where cash crops are common, the fluctuation of international market prices may also disappoint the expectations of farmers. The coffee crisis is a typical example. Furthermore, diversification allows people to shift some of the labor burden to different times of the year and to obtain a second harvest in the year.

In order to secure themselves a regular income, landless people who live on seasonal labor, will have to seek off-farm labor opportunities. At times other than the peak agricultural season labor demand and wages fall and migration of the labor force to different climatic zones may take place. Migration may involve both adults and children, who in some cultures may be sent out to work as servants. At times of food shortage, children may also be sent out to stay with relatives with better resources.

Mutual support groups are created and donations in cash or food may be received by families who may be affected by crop failure or by the occurrence of an unexpected event, such as an illness or death of a family member. Food or money to buy food may be borrowed, although this strategy leads to permanent indebtedness. The final resort is the sale of household assets, particularly animals. This is a high-cost strategy, as the inability to maintain a permanent asset base traps people in poverty and permanent food insecurity.

Quick Permanent Weight Loss

Quick Permanent Weight Loss

A Step By Step Guide To Fast Fat Loss. Do you ever feel like getting rid of the extra weight of your body? If you do, it‟s quite normal because

Get My Free Ebook


Post a comment