Puerto Rico farmers seek relief after Hurricane Maria, now working in Fishers

FISHERS, Ind.– Two brothers from Puerto Rico are the newest employees at the new Fishers AgriPark after seeking refuge from the destruction of Hurricane Maria.

Juan and Rafael Ramone started working at the Fishers AgriPark in March, after they read about Brandywine Creek Farms online. They moved to Indiana and have been working in Fishers ever since.

“It’s a pleasure having them here,” said Jonathan Lawler, the owner of Brandywine Creek Farms. “They are really hard workers.”

The Fishers AgriPark is operated by Brandywine Creek Farms and is considered the largest urban farm in the country. The farm  opened this summer as a partnership between the City of Fishers and Brandywine Creek Farms.

The AgriPark will provide produce to local food banks while offering various hands-on activities for the Fishers community.

“The City of Fishers has done an amazing job helping us,” said Lawler. “There’s a lot with this ground and turning it into something for the community is very forward-thinking.”

Juan and Rafael were working as farmers in Puerto Rico before their farmland was devastated by Hurricane Maria.  Lawler took the brothers under his wing and gave them a place to live.

“They’re actually going to be flying home next week to spend some time with their families because they’ve been here since March,” said Lawler. “Their families are coming back with them. We are actually trying to find somewhere in the umbrella of Brandywine Creek Farms where they can have 10-15 acres, live with their families, work their own farm and get their kids in schools here.”

The 33-acre Fishers AgriPark will grow cucumbers, peppers, tomatoes, melons and squash for those in need. Additionally, the farm will offer summer camps for children and a livestock encounter.