Effect of utilization of social media platforms on youth participation in agriculture in Njoro sub-county, Kenya
Most of rural people, particularly in Sub-Saharan Africa, depend on agriculture for their livelihoods. In Kenya, rural households who are mainly smallholder farmers rely on agriculture for most of their income. The agriculture sector plays an important role in employment creation. However, the sector is reportedly dominated by the elderly people while youths tend to shy away. These youths are actively involved on social media platforms hence social media have been used to promote their participation in agriculture. However, how utilization of such social media platforms affected their participation in agriculture was not yet known in Njoro Sub-county. This study focused on the effect of utilization of social media platforms on youth participation in agriculture in Njoro Sub-county. A descriptive survey research design was used with a target population of 3,925 and accessible population of 1,597 youth involved in agriculture in Njoro, Kihingo, and Lare wards. A random sampling technique was used to select 150 respondents. A questionnaire was used to collect data. SPSS version 22 and STATA version 12 was used to analyze data. The results revealed Facebook, Google search engine, and WhatsApp as the top three highly used social media platforms amongst the youth in agriculture in Njoro Sub-county. Besides, Facebook had highest 22 % respondents using it very often, 18% often, 14.7% sometimes and 6.7% rarely. Moreover, the results showed that the level of utilization of social media platforms had a significant effect (p=0.001) on youth participation in agriculture at a 5% level. WhatsApp had a positive effect (p=0.039) on youth participation in agriculture at a 5 % level. The study recommended that government and other potential stakeholders should invest in digital extension services to promote youth participation in agriculture. More youth participation would significantly reduce unemployment.
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