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Report of the Rapid Qualitative Assessment of the Livelihood Conditions of Agricultural Producers in the Gaza Strip

Methodology: 
The assessment followed a qualitative inquiry approach which was based on rapid participatory assessment techniques, and guided by standard data collection tools that were developed at the onset of the assessment in consultation with the FSS. The following points provide a overview of the methods and tools that were used:  Secondary research: A review of the most recent reports covering the humanitarian, food security, agriculture and market conditions was undertaken to get a snapshot of the food security and livelihoods situation in the Gaza Strip prior to and in the aftermath of the recent crisis. Particular attention in this review was given to the results of the assessments of damages and losses in the agricultural sector which were undertaken by MoA and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). Other reports reviewed included an analysis of satellite maps produced with the support of FAO, reports issued by the professional associations in the aftermath of the war, OCHA briefing reports and other UN agency reports. This review did not only provide context for the assessment, but it was also crucial for informing the design of the assessment methodology and tools.  Focus group discussions: A total of 13 focus group discussions were conducted with 175 farmers engaged in plant production (81), livestock breeding (86) and fishing (8) in a purposive sample of 10 farming communities (Table 1). Farmers invited to participate in the discussion were selected in consultation with farmers’ organisations in the targeted communities on the basis of criteria that ensures representation of the most affected and least affected farmers in these communities. While farmers who participated in the discussions were selected on the basis of their main livelihood activity (i.e. plant production, livestock production, and fishing), most of them, and except for fisherfolk, had mixed agricultural holdings. The FGDs focused on engaging farmers in discussing the central questions of the assessment, namely: o to what extent have farmers have been able to resume production and recover from the impact of the assault? o what are the factors that have influenced the ability of farmers to resume production, both positively and negatively? o what kind of support do farmers need to recover and be able to resume their pre-assault livelihoods? 6 TABLE 1: FGDS ORIGANISED WITHIN THE FRAMEWORK OF THE ASSESSMENT Community Description of FGDs conducted Beit Hanoun and Beit Lahia 2 focus group discussions were organised with:  Plant production farmers (11)  Livestock farmers (8) Juhur Adeek 2 focus group discussions were organised with:  Plant production farmers (16)  Livestock farmers (16) Al-Qarara 2 focus group discussions were organised with:  Plant Production Farmers (13)  Livestock farmers (15) Khuza’a 2 focus group discussions were organised with:  Plant production farmers (10)  Livestock farmers (12) Abbassan Al-Kabeera and Abbasan Al-Jadeeda 2 focus group discussions were organised with:  Plant production farmers (17)  Livestock farmers (14) Rafah 2 focus group discussions were organised with:  Plant production farmers (14)  Livestock farmers (21) Gaza City 1 focus group with fisherfolk from Gaza city and Deir Al-Balah (8)  In-depth, semi-structured interviews: a total of 30 in-depth semi-structured interviews with key informants were organised to validate the FGD results and help the assessment team gain a deeper understanding of the ways through which farmers have been coping with their recent plight. These interviews included individual and group interviews with farmers’ organisations such as the fishermen syndicate and producer cooperatives, as well as within individual livestock breeders, vegetable farmers, fruit farmers, nursery operators, and fishermen. For all FGDs and semi-structured interviews, the assessment team developed and used standard interview guidelines to make consistent the data collection process among the different team members visiting different areas at different times. These included a list of common suggested questions for most stakeholders being interviewed to allow for cross-checking data, and a suggested reporting format to facilitate identification of trends and triangulation during the analysis. Each team member contributed reports corresponding to the interviews and observations for which he/she was tasked. These were drawn upon in writing this report.
Key findings: 
More Details in the Report
Assessment Report: 
Publicly Available
Assessment Questionnaire: 
Publicly Available
Assessment Data: 
Publicly Available
Webspace(s): 
Assessment Date(s): 
01 Dec 2014
Status: 
Report completed
Population Type(s): 
All affected population
Cluster(s)/Sector(s): 
Leading/Coordinating Organization(s): 
World Food Programme
Location(s): 
occupied Palestinian territory