The Syracuse Refugee Agricultural Partnership Program (SyRAPP) addresses the needs and aspirations of a growing refugee community in Syracuse as they face significant social and economic challenges posed by a high concentration of poverty in Syracuse. In this context the SyRAPP Program responds to the desire within the refugee community for increased opportunities for food production in community gardens and market gardens in order to increase food security, create safe spaces for cultural exchange, and provide economic opportunities.
To address these needs RISE was able to secure a three year grant awarded by the US Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, through the US Office of Refugee Resettlement. During the three year grant New Americans will attend ESL gardening classes, gardening 101 classes, and hands on gardening classes taught by an urban agriculture educator from Cornell Cooperative Extension of Onondaga County. The participants have already started an incubator garden at 120 Seward Street on the North Side of Syracuse. This is where the particpants learn hands on gardening tailored to the Syracuse growing season. During the second year of the program participants will learn about marketing and selling produce and they will have individual plots of land at Salt City Harvest Farm and some will remain at the incubator garden. The participants will also sell produce through the Brady Farm CSA and at the Farmers Market. By the third year of the program participants will continue growing food on invidual lots at Salt City Harvest Farm and at community gardens and the particpants who are interested will learn how to write business plans and aquire loans to start their own farm.
We are currently accepting new applicants for the program so if you are a New American and you are interested please contact Brandy Colebrook at firstname.lastname@example.org. Also consult the Program’s Fact Sheet http://www.syracuserise.org/syrapp-program/.