Refugee and Immigrant Farmer Collective

New Lands Farm’s mission is to empower new Americans through agricultural projects to honor their food traditions, earn supplemental income, and contribute in a meaningful way to their new community and the local food system.

Our initiative focuses on these avenues of assistance:

Community Gardens: New Lands Farm continues to expand to different community garden sites throughout Massachusetts. Participants grow food for their families and the community at community garden sites and farms in Westfield, Springfield, West Springfield and Worcester. Staff supports the new gardeners with gardening instruction, as well as provide tools, seeds and plants to get them started. The gardens not only provide much needed fresh food in the poorest districts of the cities; they give meaningful activity to participants, engage the greater community in the food system and beautify the neighborhood.

Farm Sites: We now have two active farm sites located in Sutton and West Springfield. These farms provide refugee farmers with larger plots of land that they can cultivate personally or communally. These farms give farmers a chance to grow food for their families and offer the prospect of developing self-sustaining careers in agriculture through the growth and sale of their products to local markets. Throughout the season New Lands Farm staff provide farmers with the tools, plants, and seeds they need to get started. When it comes time to harvest we also support them as they begin to sell at local markets.

Farmer Trainings: New Lands Farm works closely with other partners in the region to create a strong model for training beginning farmers, providing access to farmland and technical assistance, as well providing training and opportunities in direct marketing. An annual beginning farmer-training course is offered with a variety of translations to enable diverse participation. Additional trainings are provided throughout the year to help farmers gain the skills and regional knowledge necessary to farm successfully.


Service Provider: 
New Lands Farm, a Program of Lutheran Social Services
Alba Torres
West Springfield, MA and Worcester, MA
Counties Served: 
Resource Type: 
Class or Course
Technical Assistance or Consulting
Resource Category: 
Business Planning
General Production
Infrastructure Development
Land Access
On Farm Food Safety
Enterprise Type: 
Vegetable Crops
Skill Level: 
New to farming
Planning to farm
Farmer start up