“It’s a model for the nation, for the world”
--First Lady Michelle Obama, on her April 15, 2010 visit to the New Roots Community Farm in San Diego,
a program developed by RAPP grantee the International Rescue Committee of San Diego
A focus of the Refugee Agricultural Partnership Program (RAPP) is to integrate refugees into the movement sweeping across the United States, to improve the supply and quality of food in urban and rural areas. Refugees—as potential farmers or producers of healthier foods—can make a big impact in their own families and communities at large, bringing fresh fruits and vegetables to the table, and strengthening their own health and well being.
RAPP has evolved into a program with multiple objectives that include creating supplemental and often sustainable income for families, providing an adequate supply of healthy foods in a community, supporting better physical and mental health, encouraging greater community integration, and developing the capacity of organizations to access programs offered by the USDA and other federal services and resources.
There is widespread interest among refugee and other community based organizations across this country in participating in this movement. By promoting community and school gardens, small acreage farming, farm to school programs, and health and nutrition classes, refugee farmers and gardeners achieve better utilization of farmers markets to purchase or even sell fresh produce. They also cooperate with local food banks to provide better access to fresh produce for other refugee families living in places with an inadequate number of healthy food outlets, areas known as food deserts.
The Refugee Agricultural Partnership Program encourages partnerships at all levels. ORR’s partnership with USDA (USDA.gov) has improved understanding and access to USDA programs and resources, by organizations serving refugees and refugees themselves. A link to RAPP is on the “Know Your Farmer Know Your Food” blog site.
Collaboration with private foundations and other organizations has helped incorporate refugees into the mainstream of the sustainable food movement. Local organizations have been effective because of their ability to adapt to the unique challenges and opportunities of their individual communities, and because of multiple partnerships and collaboration with Cooperative Extension and other public and private organizations.
To learn more about what happened in 2011, read the RAPP Annual Report for 2011 (DOC 35KB).
Be part of the RAPP network!
Join the RAPP listserve, with more than 230 subscribers across the country, sharing tips, success stories, and more information about their agricultural projects—with, for and by refugees! Also be sure to check out ORR’s technical assistance partner,
List of New Grantees – FY2019
|IRC||New York||NY||9/29/2019||$100,000||Tyler George-Minetti
|International Rescue Committee||New York||NY||9/29/2019||$99,681||Lisa Welze
|Journey's End Refugee Services||Buffalo||NY||9/29/2019||$100,000||Jenna Walczak
|International Rescue Committee||New York||NY||9/29/2019||$100,000||Brooke Ray
|Lutheran Social Services of Colorado||Denver||CO||9/29/2019||$99,997||Zoey Fink
|Catholic Charities of Louisville||Louisville||KY||9/29/2019||$94,897||Laura Stevens
|Association of Africans Living in Vermont||Burlington||VT||9/29/2019||$98,312||Yacouba Bogre
|International Institute of Metropolitan St. Louis||St. Louis||MO||9/29/2019||$100,000||Suzanne LeLaurin
|International Rescue Committee||New York||NY||9/29/2019||$100,000||Katrina Martinez
|USCRI||Silver Spring||MD||9/29/2019||$100,000||Karin Wishner
|Global Growers Network, Inc.||Avondale Estates||GA||9/29/2019||$99,979||Barret Smith
|Catholic Social Services, Inc.||Anchorage||AK||9/29/2019||$90,000||Elizabeth Krauszer
|Refugee and Immigrant Self-Empowerment||Syracuse||NY||9/29/2019||$99,655||Brandy Colebrook
|Pacific Gateway Center||Honolulu||HI||9/29/2019||$100,000||Terrina Wong
|Southside Community Land Trust||Providence||RI||9/29/2019||$99,825||Andrew Cook
RAPP Program Manager
Office of Refugee Resettlement
Administration for Children and Families
Mary E. Switzer Building
330 C Street, SW
Washington DC 20201