Since 2008, ORIS has been a regional leader in promoting land access, market development and technical training to support new American farmers. Under the banner of Fresh Start Farms NH, our produce is available at farmers’ markets, through community supported agriculture (CSA) and wholesale. In May 2018, ORIS partnered with the Russell Foundation to raise the funds to purchase the 56 acre Story Hill Farm in Dunbarton. After 5 years of leasing the property, significant soil building, infrastructure development, and organizational growth, this was a natural growth step in the ORIS timeline.
The purchase of the 56 acre farm will achieve multiple benefits:
The farm currently sustainably grows organic food on 7 acres of open farmland. The successful completion of this project will allow for expansion, increasing active farmland production to almost 12 acres.
The farm is partnered with USDA/NRCS and the Xerces Society. These partnerships are focused on ensuring and supporting Best Management Practices and organic standards, soil health, water quality and whole farm ecological health.
The property is in the middle of 364 acres of conservation land. The successful completion of this project will bring the block of conservation land to over 400 acres.
The project will create a self-sustaining model of successful farm and community incubation and long term viability. This new model accounts for secure land tenure and equity through permanent land ownership by ORIS and long term ground leases to New American farmers.
The new model will have holistic land management collaborations and conservation, utilizing unique characteristics of the land itself to create an agrarian ecology that has the proper balance of human, natural, farm, and forest.
A fundraising campaign has catalyzed broad-based grass roots support, raised awareness, and secured foundation grants from NH Charitable Foundations and the Russell Farm and Forest Conservation Foundation. The campaign has brought in over 230 individual donations and received broad based interest from media outlets. Landowners, Judy Stone and Martha Hammond have also provided vision, support, donations, patience, and a bargain sale by donating significant property value. The Russell Foundation has also provided Project
Management, Planning, Fundraising and other project support. Presently ORIS is in final fundraising push to fully fund the purchase and the generous support from Hannaford will help achieve the funding goal enable the purchase of the Story Hill farm land.
The Organization for Refugee and Immigrant Success is grateful for the opportunity to secure land tenure for limited resource farmers who are bringing collective and unique agricultural knowledge and experience to Southern New Hampshire. Contact ORIS to find out how you can get involved as a donor, volunteer, or customer of Fresh Start Farms NH.
THANK YOU FUNDERS, SUPPORTERS AND DONORS!
|Our Story Hill on Crowdrise|
FEATURED MEDIA COVERAGE
NHPR, Hannah McCarthy
FOOD SOLUTIONS NEW ENGLAND