BFRDP Projects

Global Garden Farm Chicago: Preparing Displaced Refugee Farmers for Vegetable Production in the Midwest
[Progress Report]

Award Amount: $71,080
Grant Program: 2014 Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program Awards
Project Director: Linda Seyler
Organization: Global Garden Refugee Trainig Farm


  • Overview
  • Results
  • Materials
  • Delivery Area
  • Comments

Project Overview

Global Garden Refugee Training Farm (GGRTF) developed and delivered 2 six-week courses to
prepare displaced refugee farmers for farming and farm business management in the Midwestern U.S. Fifteen farmers participated in the training, which was a first stage toward preparing them to develop farm business plans in preparation for establishing successful vegetable farms. Lesson plans were developed for another two topics: Season Extension and Soil Management.  Teaching materials were designed to be appropriate for displaced refugee farmers with limited or no English and potentially low literacy in any language. In-class interpretation was provided for all sessions. Course content addressed both the prior experience and knowledge gaps unique to newly arrived displaced refugee farmers.

During the 2015 growing season which followed this project's conclusion, participating farmers increased their income from produce sales at market by 214% over the previous year.  Other factors besides this project contributed to this increase, especially participants' improved English language skills, but the farmers also grew a wider variety of cool season crops, and improved both their produce displays and customer service.

Since the conclusion of this project, lesson plans developed for this project have been improved, expanded, and contributed to ISED Solution's 'Educational Tools and Methods for Beginning Refugee & Immigrant Farmers' which is developing and testing curricula and instructional methods for assisting displaced refugee farmers with continuing their careers in farming here in the United States.

Number of Participants: 15


Promotional Materials

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Educational Materials

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Reports & Evaluations

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Delivery Area

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Individual Stories / Examples of Success