The Role of Married Women in Household Food Security:The Case of Kersa Kondaltiti Woreda, West Shewa

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Date

2000-05

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Addis Ababa University

Abstract

This paper is aimed at examining the role of women in household food security. The content, however, is confined to the realities in three kebeles of Kersa Kondaltiti Woreda. Kersa Kondaltiti is found in the West Sh ewa Zone of the Oromia Regional State. It is located 60 kms south of Addis Ababa on the main road to BLitajira. Results of the study have revealed that women in the area participate actively both in crop and in livestock production. However, they are denied of ownership of productive assets (i.e. land and livestock), and the fruit of their labor. They have little power on the decision of the selling and disposing of the income that is earned from the field crops and from the larger animals except their products,such as butter. This has resulted in the women having less purchasing power, which fiu·ther affects their participation in the market and in the household's access to food. In addition, it has been established that availability of women's labor is very essential to household food security in relation to the provision of processed food for consumption. Besides, fetching water, gathering fuel wood and grinding grain have been found to be ensuring factors for household food security. As a result, since most of women 's time is utilized by these daily activities their involvement in other income generating activities is restrained. The study has strongly established that the role of women in household food security is crucial, but that under the curtailing conditions for women - - the key actors - the desired food security could not be ensured.

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Keywords

The Role of Married Women, Household Food Security

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