Organization for Refugee and Immigrant Success (ORIS)


Fresh Start Farms group

The Russell Foundation provides support to ORIS’s agriculture and land based programming that supports New American immigrants and refugees, as they pursue self-sufficiency through land based farming enterprises. This support includes developing land tenure opportunities through secure lease agreements and land acquisition, fundraising, partnership development, holistic ecologically focused land management and developing new models for farm incubator programs.

“Ian McSweeney has transformed our organization from a landless non-profit to a land secure entity that has land tenure for our immigrant farmers and our programming. With his professional level of understanding, negotiation skills, knowledge of land laws and real estate transactions, ability to work with municipalities, grant writing abilities, creativity, and passion for the cause, he has created sustainable pathways that are enabling farmers’ dreams to go from unattainable to achievable. As we worked with the Russell Foundation and saw the project achieving success beyond originally planned, we simply had no words that could adequately express the gratitude that our community is feeling. The model is like no other.”

– Wendy Stevens, Our Story Hill Project Manager, ORIS


Wendy Stevens