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Food Security and Livelihoods Assessment of Fisher and Agro-pastoralist Households in Upper Egypt

Lori Curtis, Irene Omondi, Hesham Khalifa and Ahmed Salem

Preface

            This work is the result of a collaborative effort and fieldwork in Upper Egypt, with the goal of highlighting the challenges faced by communities and livelihoods that are often overlooked in mainstream development projects. This field study draws attention to the context and challenges that are unique to fishers and agro-pastoralists living in governorates in Upper Egypt; an extremely vibrant and culturally rich area, while at the same time experiencing some of the highest levels of poverty in the country.

The people living in the governorates in Upper Egypt are known as being particularly poor, with the majority of people relying on food production and marketing systems as a predominant source of livelihood. This is particularly critical as they are not only producing food for their own households, but also for households throughout their communities, and in some cases for households throughout Egypt. While not uncommon among agricultural communities, the high levels of poverty among those supplying the country with the food they need to survive is unacceptable and the importance in addressing this is becoming increasingly urgent. The majority of those involved in the agriculture sector in Upper Egypt are small-scale producers, with their households and family being very integrated into livelihoods; making it neither easy nor necessarily desirable to separate households and household members from the livelihood sustaining it. Consideration of these small-scale fishers and agro-pastoralists in a holistic manner, while understanding and incorporating the dynamic nature of these livelihoods and households, will be key to the success of these interventions. Important factors for fishers and agro-pastoralists in Upper Egypt that should be considered include the varied and changing sources of household income as well as the extremely important role woman play in these households and livelihoods, despite the fact that their work is not always clearly visible and subsequently valued.

The information gathered during this field study would not have been possible without the kind time and patience of those fishers and agro-pastoralists who sat in focus groups for hours, and all those who assisted in bringing together these people.

Introduction

This study is the result of a food security and livelihoods assessment in fisher and agro-pastoralist household in Upper Egypt which took place in july 2012. The results of this assessment explore the challenges faced by these households, the coping strategies they undertake, their interactions at the community level, their organization and the opportunities for livelihood enhancement and food security improvement. Included in the report are recommendations to address the main challenges and constraints identified. The field mission met with fishers, agro-pastoralists, household members, traders, cooperative members, local authorities, local universities and extension workers in Fayoum, BeniSuef, Minya, Sohag, Qena and Aswan.       

Contents

Introduction

·        Rationale

·        Purpose and objectives

·        Methodology

Description of the current situation

-  Fisheries and Aquaculture

·        Background information

·        Fishing Livelihoods

·        Role of Women

·        Household Information

·        Population Movement

·        Constraints and Challenges

-  Livestock

·        Background information

·        Pastoralist Livelihoods

·        Role of Women

·        Household Information

·        Population Movement

·        Constraints and Challenges

-  Markets and Livelihoods

Livestock Markets and Livelihoods

Fish Marketing, trade and livelihoods

Implications for Livelihoods and Food Security

·        Fisheries

·        Livestock

Conclusions

Recommendations

·        Fisheries

·        Livestock

·        Markets and Livelihoods

References

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Prep/ Ayman Ashry

Manage/ Zeinab Osman

المصدر: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nation
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