Original Research

Tackling climate change through craft development: The case of rural women in uPhongolo Local Municipality

Antonia T. Nzama
Jàmbá: Journal of Disaster Risk Studies | Vol 13, No 1 | a1140 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/jamba.v13i1.1140 | © 2021 Antonia T. Nzama | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 12 March 2021 | Published: 30 September 2021

About the author(s)

Antonia T. Nzama, Department of Recreation and Tourism, Faculty of Arts, University of Zululand, KwaDlangezwa, South Africa


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Abstract

Climate change is a global phenomenon that is affecting all humanity. Bearing the harshest brunt of environmental, social and economic shocks are the world’s poorest and those in vulnerable conditions such as women in rural areas. Rural areas have experienced a decline in the dependence on agriculture and livestock farming because of climate change, thus forcing people especially women to look for alternative sources of sustainable livelihoods (SLs). The objective of this study was to establish the extent to which craft development can be used as an alternative livelihood by women in uPhongolo Local Municipality in KwaZulu-Natal to mitigate the effects of climate change. This study adopted a SL theoretical framework to explain how women in the study area used craft development to improve their livelihoods. A survey method was adopted for this study using both qualitative and quantitative approaches. Non-probability sampling strategy using a purposive sampling technique was used to select 50 women crafters from uPhongolo Local Municipality. Face-to-face interviews using questionnaires, which had both closed and open-ended questions, were conducted. These allowed for the collection of numeric data and simultaneously allowed respondents to express themselves and elaborate on the structured questions. The Software Programme for Social Science (SPSS) was used to analyse quantitative data that had been generated using structured interviews and categorised qualitative data. The findings indicated that innovative entrepreneurship using natural capital readily available in the area for craft development and linking the products to the market play a significant role in improving SLs of women in the study area. The study recommends that capacity-building programmes be provided to equip rural women with skills that would enhance their ability to respond to natural hazards such as climate change.

Keywords

Climate change; natural capital; sustainable livelihoods; innovative entrepreneurship; craft development

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