Attitudes towards NGOs‟ and their initiatives aiming at alleviating poverty in Tanzania: The case of Musoma District, Mara Region.
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The general objective of this study was to examine beneficiaries‟ attitudes towards NGOs‟ initiatives aiming at alleviating poverty. Other specific objectives were; to identify the activities done by NGOs, to identify the main socio-economic problems facing the NGO‟ beneficiaries, to explore the NGOs‟ and locals‟ definitions of poverty and development, and to examine the knowledge, experiences, and perceptions of the beneficiaries on NGOs‟ initiatives. Data were collected by using four methods which included in-depth interviews, Focus Group Discussions, observation and documentary review. The findings showed that the main economic activities in Musoma District are crop cultivation, animal husbandry and small business. The main socio-economic problems are poverty, low marketing plus fluctuating prices, expensive inputs, lack of accessibility to credits, HIV/AIDS and vagaries of weather. In order to alleviate poverty NGOs such as ACCODEO, ADM, FINCA and PRIDE are engaged in the fields of education, health, HIV/AIDS, and income generating activities. The study revealed that there were duplications of interventions, selectivity, disempowerment, nonparticipatory approaches, corruption, and negligence of local knowledge among the NGOs. The study found that many of the NGOs‟ beneficiaries have generated negative attitudes towards NGOs‟ initiatives. Moreover, a recap of the major issues in the findings is provided. These are; on the definition of poverty and development, on community participation, on empowerment, on sustainability of the project and on local knowledge. The study concludes by re-visting the theoretical framework (agency theory) to establish whether the theory used has enabled this study to unravel the beneficiaries‟ attitudes or not.
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