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Relevance of formal education in rural youth participation in planning of community development projects in kenya

Author: 
Otieno Evans Ochieng, Maria Adhiambo Onyango and Zachary Kinaro
Subject Area: 
Social Sciences and Humanities
Abstract: 

Socioeconomic factors which are inclusive of formal education, natural resources and how they are governed by culture and central government define the level of development in any community. The levels to which local cultures interact with global cultures enhance the degree to which people adapt to external influences which would support their positive development in global lenses. While young people seek more economic opportunities and claim further property rights, their participation in community development projects remains low in comparison to adult participation. Government has been implementing various projects and programmes all geared towards poverty reduction and boosting food security in Turkana County, however the number of youth taking up responsibility in community development projects is low. The study sought to establish influence of formal education level on youth participation in community development projects in Turkana County. The researcher used Krejecie and Morgan table to sample 360 drawn from a population of 13848 youth. Stratified sampling was adopted in selecting 45 participants from the eight locations in the study area. Purposive sampling was used to include key informants for interview and FGD resulting to a total of 375 respondents. Descriptive and inferential statistics were used to analyze the quantitative data and qualitative analysis on non-numeric data. Pearson Correlation Coefficient was used to establish the associations of the study variables. Results revealed that rural youth lacked practical skills, values and attitudes to engage in community projects. The researcher recommends that education system should foster a positive attitude towards youth participation in development projects through revision of education and training curricula to enable training that meet demands of labour market. The study concludes that success of community development projects in Kenya depend on youth participation in decision-making, development planning, good leadership and the will of institutions at the grassroots to pursue sustainable participatory development endeavors.

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