Wednesday, February 24, 2016

49. Field Visit 4.5: Gatwa Farmer Interview

Tues., Feb. 23, 2016
Today I had the opportunity to truly appreciate the strength and endurance of the enumerators taking the baseline survey for the AGLC project. The terrain is mountainous and the farmers are usually located far from the road. The enumerators, there are 5 in the group I met, eat breakfast together at 6:30am in Musanze town each morning, depart in their vehicle (with a driver) at 7:00am, in order to reach the washing station in the Gakenke area by 9:00am. Today, I drove in from Kigali, and met them at the washing station.

By 10:00am we were meeting the farmers we would interview. By about 10:45am we were at the first farmer's home, beginning the interview. We finished the interview about 1:00pm. By 1:45pm we had hiked back up to the road and into the town where I had parked my car. Frank, the enumerator I "shadowed" for the morning, met the second farmer there and started the hike towards his house. I had to depart in my vehicle for Kigali.

See the illustrative sequence of photos below.
PART 1 - Start and homestead
From the list of randomly selected names, Frank has drawn 2 numbers for the farmers he will interview today. (Photo intentionally blurred.)

These are the two farmers (left and right) and Frank, the enumerator (center), heading towards the first farmer's home.

After reaching the house, Frank gets out the Samsung tablet and fires up the first interview of the day.
Taking the GPS coordinates at the house.

Asking the farmer the "household characteristic" questions while sitting in the yard in front of the home.

The farmer's wife brings out the land title documents for this farmer's land.

Frank notes the size of each of the farmer's 9 plots of land from the documents, before entering the data in the tablet.

Data processing -- from title documents to tablet.

Snapshot before we leave the home to visit the coffee fields.

Part 2: Visits to coffee fields and then 80% of the questionnaire - before the rain started.
Trail from the home to the first coffee field.

Frank paces off the width and depth of coffee field #1.

Frank takes the GPS coordinates at coffee field #1. He did this at coffee fields #2 and #3, also. If a farmer has more than 3 fields, the enumerator measures only 3 of the fields.

A small set of questions is conducted at the first coffee field.

Settled in for the long set of questions in the 3rd field. This farmer said he knows the antestia bug and has seen them in his field!

Unfortunately, the farmer did not seem to know much about what leaf rust is. I asked "what is this?" and he said it's a problem with an insect. I'm hoping he does know it, and it was just a translation problem. I saw a lot of rust on his trees.
Starting the choice experiment.

"If you had 40kg of cherry, and these three choices for selling it, what would you do?"

Each choice offers a different array of price and distance to point-of-sale. The farmer is asked to assume a cherry-to-parchment conversion of 5:1. The third choice is "same as I did last year."
Part 3: Under the eaves of a neighbors' house as it rains
The interview continued under the eaves here.

This neighbor had 2 cows and a calf (a black one behind the gate), and I got to see where they make banana beer.
The interview completed on this side of the house, where there was a bit more shelter.
The kind mom who welcomed us into her home and her day of chores.
A very fitting ending, I thought, was a chance to read the signs that decorated the walls of the home.
This was one of 4 or 5 charming signs in the room. In English, "The household where there is love and harmony, there is  God."