Domestic Violence High As Women Farmers Suffer Climate Change Effects

1926 Views Fort Portal, Uganda

In short
The women have lost food crops which have been washed away by floods and crop fields become dry, leaving them with no food for consumption and sale and as a result, they are subjected to physical assaults by their husbands.

The stresses caused by effects of climate change have increased cases of domestic violence against women farmers in Kabarole district. Kabarole district like other districts in the Rwenzori region experiences extreme weather conditions like drought and floods.
 
The women have lost food crops which have been washed away by floods and crop fields become dry, leaving them with no food for consumption and sale and as a result, they are subjected to physical assault by their husbands.
 
Anne Kobugenyi, a farmer in Rwengaju village in Busoro Sub County says that when a season fails or crops are washed away, she is unable to provide food for her husband and children. Kobugenyi says that she has on several occasions been assaulted and chased out of the home by her husband, who thinks that she deliberately refuses to provide food for the family.
 
Kobugenyi also says that other women are forced to travel long distances to collect firewood and water, which often proves dangerous.
 
//Cue in: "the drought and floods…
 
Cue out: ‘…no food to eat.
 
Harriet Mbabazi, the chairperson of Busoro sub county women's council says that the council has compiled more than 60 cases of women being physically assaulted by their husbands due to conflicts in the family over lack of food. Mbabazi also says that men have also abandoned their families, leaving behind their wives with children.
 
 
In an effort to reduce on the effects of climate change on women, some women organizations have started training women on climate change mitigation and adaption. Resty Bagonza, the chairperson Busoro women's development agency, says that  women are being trained to plant trees on their farms, creating vegetable gardens, using innovative energy efficient stoves, growing non-drought resistant crops and using water harvesting techniques for small scale irrigation.
 
 
Bagonza says that embracing the stoves will reduce need for women to walk long distances to collect firewood and water. She says that the district authorities should come up with measures to respond to women's concerns during the disasters like the floods and drought.
 
 
//Cue in: "training the women…
Cue out: "…the men should understand."//
 
According to the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), women in developing countries face high risks to their livelihoods and health from the effects of climate change. UNEP says investment in new technologies can improve women's climate adaptation capacity and livelihood opportunities.
 
UNEP adds that women worldwide are more vulnerable to the effects of climate change than men, since they comprise 70 percent of the world's poor and are more dependent on natural resources.

 

About the author

Emmanuel Kajubu
Emmanuel Kajubu is proud to have been the first Ugandan journalist to write in depth pieces about the Tooro Kingdom institution. His knowledge of the inner workings of the Tooro Kingdom is what made him privy to the splits in the royal family. These splits almost challenged Tooro Omukama Oyo Nyimba Iguru's reign.

Culture, agriculture and the environment are just two areas of many of interest to Kajubu. As long as he has held a pen, Kajubu has also written about public policy, health and crime.

Kajubu is keen on impacting his society not just as a writer but also a trainer and mentor. Bundibugyo and Ntoroko districts fall under his docket. Kajubu has been a URN staff member since 2008.