ASSESSMENT OF EXTENSION EDUCATION AS A STRATEGY FOR POVERTY REDUCTION IN ENUGU STATE, NIGERIA
This study focused on assessment of Extension education as a strategy for poverty reduction in Enugu State Nigeria. The study aimed at extracting useful information on Extension education services used for poverty reduction. Specifically, the study sought to find out: the causes of poverty, health extension education services, agricultural extension education services, commercial and home economics extension education services, industrial and university extension education services used for poverty reduction as well as the problems militating against the use of extension education as a strategy for poverty reduction among the inhabitants of Nsukka Education Zone, Enugu State. The research was carried out in 28 communities purposively selected because the registered associations and cooperative societies that the members were used as respondents, exist in the communities in Nsukka Education Zone Enugu State. Six research questions guided the study. Six hypotheses were tested at 0.05 level of significance. The study adopted descriptive survey research design. A 67 items structured questionnaire developed by the researcher and titled “Extension Education for Poverty Reduction Questionnaire (EEPRQ) was used for data collection. The population of the study was 1598 members of registered associations and cooperative societies. A sample of 320 was drawn from the population using Yaro Yamane Formula. The data collected were analyzed using Mean and Standard Deviation for the Research Questions while t-test statistics was used for rtesting the six null hypotheses at 0.05 level of significance. The questionnaire was face validated by three experts; one each from the Department of Adult Education and Extra-Mural Studies, Department of Vocational Teacher Education and Department of Science Education, University of Nigeria, Nsukka respectively. The Reliability Coefficient was obtained through Cronbach Alpha reliability technique for the clusters: cluster B = .75, cluster C = .82, cluster D = .85, cluster E = .90, cluster F = .94, cluster G = .95 with over all reliability coefficient of .93. The findings of the study showed that: causes of poverty include illiteracy, low political awareness, socio-cultural problem, low economic empowerment, as well as insufficient skill acquisition centres. Moreso, that health extension education services, agricultural extension education services, commercial and home economics extension education services, industrial and university extension education services are used for poverty reduction. Also, some problems militate against the use of extension education as a strategy for poverty reduction among the inhabitants of Nsukka Education Zone, Enugu State. Based on the findings, the researcher recommended among others that there should be sufficient skills acquisition and literacy education centres, as well as that health, agricultural, commercial, home economics, industrial and university extension education services should inevitably be used for poverty reduction among the inhabitants of Nsukka Education Zone, Enugu State. The researcher made some suggestions for further research including; Assessment of Extension education as a Strategy for Poverty Reduction in South-East Nigeria.
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