Entrepreneurship, beekeeping, and health training to decrease community violence in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania: a pilot study for an intervention trial

Anne H. Outwater, Alison G. Abraham, Masunga K. Iseselo, Linda Helgesson Sekei, Method R. Kazaura, Japheth Killewo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: High unemployment rates and limited access to resources, services, and economic opportunities are associated with many types of violence. In Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, most violence is experienced by unemployed, poorly educated men between the ages of 20 and 35 years. It is expected that community violence will decrease as the incomes of those most at risk increase. However, economic opportunity through formal employment is rarely available to uneducated men in Dar es Salaam. Giving them access to economic independence through entrepreneurship training is therefore supported by the World Bank and the government of Tanzania. There has been little research on the effectiveness of programs to encourage entrepreneurship. Methods: To evaluate the feasibility of providing entrepreneurial training programs to young men in Dar es Salaam, especially those without formal employment, a pretest-posttest pilot study was conducted drawing a sample of young men from neighborhood camps called vijiweni. There were four interventions, each implemented in a single camp: Health/Control, Entrepreneurship + Health, Beekeeping + Health, and Entrepreneurship + Beekeeping + Health. The four camps received 2, 6, 6, and 10 training sessions, respectively. No start-up capital was provided. The participants were interviewed at baseline and 3 months, 6 months, and 1 year after the sessions were completed. Data were collected on demographics, household assets, experience of violence, and income. Results: Fifty-seven respondents attended the first session. At baseline, the camps were not meaningfully different from one another in educational attainment, number of dependents, daily income, assets, or individual members’ roles as victims, perpetrators, or witnesses of violence. Differences were found in age, occupation, and weekly income. Over a period of 2.25 years (from baseline to the end of the project), the weekly income of the Health/Control camp, which had been earning the most, decreased by 37% in a reflection of worsening economic conditions at the time. All three intervention camps increased their income: Beekeeping by 43%, All by 50%, and Entrepreneurship by 146%, with the latter almost reaching the minimum wage level. The most persistently reported constraint was insufficient start-up capital. Conclusions: The feasibility and potential effectiveness of a short training program on entrepreneurship skills for unemployed, poorly educated young men in urban Tanzania were demonstrated in this study. It has set the stage for an intervention trial to test an updated hypothesis: A 5–7-day intervention about entrepreneurship and microfinance savings groups will lead to increased income and decreased violence. Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.govNCT 04602416. Registered on 24 October 2020. Retrospectively registered.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number183
JournalPilot and Feasibility Studies
Volume7
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2021
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Africa
  • Beekeeping
  • Entrepreneurship training
  • Informal economy
  • Informal sector
  • Microbusiness
  • Microfinance
  • Urban youth
  • Violence reduction
  • Youth unemployment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)

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