Willingness of wetland squatters to participate in wetland restoration activities in Kirinya wetland, Kira Municipality, Wakiso district.
Mutunga, Arnold Garbriel
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Wetland degradation and encroachment has been on the rise since the drastic increase in human populations since they have for long been seen as the expansion land to the squatters since they are held in trust by the government which limits immediate supervisions coupled with their activities in the particulate wetlands which is basically shown in spatial extent and reduction in wetland function. The size reduction by over 30% with minute increases of 0.03%, so small to get even half of what was lost over the years to date. The study aimed at identifying wetland degradation activities, wetland restoration measures and further more willingness of the people to participate in the wetland restoration activities a case study carried out around Kirinya wetland in Kirinya ward Bweyogerere division. Though these wetland degradation activities are illegal in the world, inadequate monitoring and implementation of particulate structures to curb the evils of wetland degradation and deterioration. Wetland degradation is perceived in different ways by the people, including; reduced vegetation, reduction in water level, cultivation closer to the wetlands, drainage channels in wetland, cutting trees or deforestation, burning of swamps, reduced fish, reduced productivity of wetland, open sand pits, reduced wetland animals and more. To a larger extent, most wetland squatters know the services provided by wetlands such as; controlling flood and drought, conserving water improving water quality, regulating climate change, settling sediments and pollutants conserving biodiversity and many more hence restoration to these activities is vividly possible hence squatters are aware about wetland restoration and benefits. All data was acquired from respondents around the wetland, through observation checklists and questionnaires in their respective data collection methods. The education level, number of dependents, level of participation before, knowledge about the activities, policies available, but mainly awareness of the people; and other actors determine individuals’ choices on participation and participation in restoration activities since people tend to make participation choices based on the losses versus gains from the outcome. the Squatters’ knowledge and beliefs on the wetlands and services received enables understanding how the community is connected to the ecosystem, influencing the willingness and nature of participation in restoration.
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