Climate Change is significantly affecting the jobs and livelihoods of many; thus, mitigation and adaptation policies must include the voices of indigenous people. On this premise, the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung Economic Policy Competence Centre, the General Agricultural Workers Union, and the Youth Advocacy on Rights and Opportunities embarked on the Climate Just Community Engagement from 17th – 25th September 2022. The community engagements took place in the Northern part of Ghana, which is classified as one of Ghana's Climate Change vulnerability hotspots. The communities, Navrongo, Zebilla(Upper East), Yeliyeri, Busa(Upper West)and Botanga(Northern Region) were visited to understand how climate change was impacting jobs and livelihoods and the mitigation and adaptation measures adopted.
The team at each destination had farmers from adjoining communities attending town hall meetings to discuss the effects of Climate Change, adaptation and mitigation measures. Training on Climate Smart Agriculture was provided by the Ministry of Agriculture, GAWU and Ghana Irrigation Development Authority. Following the Community Engagements, a multi-stakeholder was held to discuss findings from the community engagement with key stakeholders from Ministries, Regional Coordinating Councils, Academia, Media, Trades Unions and Civil Society Organisations. The multi-stakeholder dialogue provided the space to discuss solutions to the effects of Climate Change on jobs and livelihoods.
The following were some findings from the field:
• Women do not have control but access to lands – these lands are often infertile
• Many farmlands have been sold out for other purposes because of the losses farmers make from farming due to Climate Change
• Challenges and financial constraints to access and acquire Improved and certified seeds
• Water bodies are under threat of pollution – for instance, fishermen spray Glyphosates "Condemn" on water bodies to control weeds to enable them to fish
• Excessive and indiscriminate use of chemical fertilizers is gradually killing the micro-organisms in the soil rendering it infertile and its subsequent health hazards on both men and women
• Young people migrate to urban centres to engage in indecent, precarious work in search of their daily living