Extension for Empowerment: An Analysis of the Role of Agricultural Extension in Masaka District: A Case Study of Kkingo Sub-County.
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LUTAAYA FERDINAND (2007-MO93-10103) Extension for Empowerment: An Analysis of the Role of Agricultural Extension in Masaka District: A Case Study of Kkingo Sub-County This research study was about the role of extension services in empowering farmers in Masaka district, a case study of Kkingo sub-county. The major objective of the research was to explore the role of extension services in empowering farmers. The specific objectives of the study were: to study whether extension services empower farmers to decide on the type of advisory services they need to improve production; to examine how extension services empower farmers to build capacity to increase production; to investigate whether extension services empower farmers to adopt improved technologies in order to boost production; and to scrutinise the ways extension services provide farmers with market availability information needed for increased production. The research was a case study that employed qualitative methods of collecting and analysing data. Key findings showed that extension services mainly targeted groups of farmers and those who could afford to pay for the services, buy and maintain improved technology and left out the individual small-scale farmers. The conclusion from the study was that extension services to a certain extent empowered farmers in the areas of choice of advisory services, capacity building and use of improved technology to increase production but the same services did not empower farmers with market information which they need to improve on their incomes. The researcher recommended the mobilisation of all farmers into groups so as to have a common and strong voice, market their products collectively, employing extension staff on contract basis so as to monitor their performance regularly, more facilitation of extension staff, and repackaging capacity building of farmers to target every small-scale farmer. Key words: Empowerment, Extension, Agriculture, Agricultural