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Socio-Economic Status and Living Conditions of Coastal Communities: Impacts on the Mangrove Ecosystems in the Scarcies Estuaries, Sierra Leone, West Africa

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Abstract:

This research was conducted between the periods of March 2015 to December 2015 in the Scarcies Estuary, Sierra Leone. Participatory methods such as Focused Group Discussion (FGD), Interviews and ranking exercises were used for the assessment. The objective of this study is to assess the social and economic constraints of coastal communities, and how such constraints have influenced mangrove loss in the area. Knowledge on those is scarce for this region. The study will contribute to improving sustainable management agenda for mangrove forests in the Scarcies Estuaries. Results show a more active and productive age range of respondents (31-40 years), capable enough to make decisions that could influence resource use. A Student’s t-test showed no significant difference in sex at (P>0.05) for male (70%) and female (30%) mangrove dependents. In addition, of the various mangroves related economic activities, oyster collection and farming remained the most important with income above One Million Leones (>115USD) per week and per farming season respectively. Further, key constraints in the communities included inadequate health centers, educational facilities and lack of basic material assets. Multiple households in a dwelling unit are also a common residential arrangement in these areas. Such living conditions are in the context of the definition of poverty with such outcomes as deprived resources such as money and assets, poor health and illiteracy. Hence, it is increasingly evident that the conservation of mangroves in this region cannot be done without considering the varying impacts of poverty, gender roles and resource utilisation patterns.

Info:

Periodical:
International Letters of Social and Humanistic Sciences (Volume 88)
Pages:
1-14
Citation:
K. J. Konoyima and R. G. Johnson, "Socio-Economic Status and Living Conditions of Coastal Communities: Impacts on the Mangrove Ecosystems in the Scarcies Estuaries, Sierra Leone, West Africa", International Letters of Social and Humanistic Sciences, Vol. 88, pp. 1-14, 2020
Online since:
March 2020
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