USAID’s Feed the Future initiative strives to address the root causes of poverty and hunger by providing local families and communities with tools and knowledge that will help them better feed themselves. As part of this initiative, in East Africa USAID sponsored the development of Africa’s first agriculture-focused reality TV programme: Don’t Lose the Plot (DLTP).
Targeting young people, DLTP sought to change attitudes towards farming as a viable business venture in Kenya and Tanzania, with the specific objectives of encouraging young people to consider farming as a lucrative career choice, providing information on how to start agribusinesses, and sharing useful agronomic information. Kantar Public’s local East Africa team were commissioned to evaluate the impact of DLTP on knowledge, attitudes, and behaviour in relation to farming and agribusiness practices. Since a baseline survey was not feasible (due to the scale of the population to be targeted and uncertainty regarding the eventual viewing audience), the team developed an innovative evaluation design, drawing on digital, tablet-based data collection, to ensure the samples of viewers and non-viewers were comparable.
Findings from the evaluation indicated that DLTP had successfully increased knowledge related to farming and agribusiness in Kenya and Tanzania, and improved farming and agribusiness practices among viewers.
The study contributes important evidence to support the African agricultural sector where Kantar Public has been working for more than ten years.