Toronto·Video

Alpaca farm reborn after community rallies together to help

An alpaca farm is coming back to life thanks in part to the generosity of community members who helped a couple in need.

Couple says they are 'grateful' for 'overwhelming' support after barn collapse

Alpaca farmers thank community for support

6 years ago
1:12
Nancy and Garth Hutchinson say the help they received after their barn collapsed last year has been overwhelming. 1:12

An alpaca farm is coming back to life thanks in part to the generosity of community members who helped a couple in need.

Last year, a barn that housed alpacas just outside Oshawa, Ont., collapsed under the weight of heavy snow. On Sunday, the new barn was christened with the attendance of local supporters before the alpacas officially move in. 

"I don't think I can even put it into words how excited I feel — I'm so excited," said Nancy Hutchinson, the woman behind the 1Stop Alpaca Farm. 

Instead of being put down, these alpacas were housed by locals who offered to help when the old barn collapsed. (CBC News)
"I just feel ecstatic that this barn is up and grateful for everybody who's helped us," she added.
This community is amazing, that's all there is to it.- Garth Hutchinson

Nancy and her husband Garth are alpaca farmers who say having no safe place to house their animals was wearing them down.

After nearby farmers offered to take them in instead of letting the animals be put down after the collapse, the couple said they were revitalized and looking ahead to their future in Hampton, Ont., which is located 80 kilometres northeast of Toronto.

"To have everybody come together the way they have has been overwhelming," Garth said. "This community is amazing, that's all there is to it."
The alpacas are finally returning to their home at 1Stop Alpaca Farm, which is located 80 kilometres northeast of Toronto. (CBC News)

'Great people out there'

These acts of kindness from people in the community, along with Garth working seven days a week, allowed the couple to finally say they have a home for their alpacas to live permanently. 

"At the time, I think it's chaotic — you're in crisis mode and I'm grateful in an odd kind of way because we've met so many wonderful people, so many strangers have come out to help us who are now really good friends of ours and it's just opened up our eyes of what a great world we live in," Nancy said.

"There's a lot of great people out there," Nancy added.

Even Mayor Adrian Foster of Clarington, Ont., and Durham MPP Granville Anderson attended the ribbon cutting ceremony.

"The animals will be home for Christmas, like the song says," Nancy said with a smile.
From left, Garth Hutchinson, Nancy Hutchinson, Mayor Adrian Foster of Clarington, Ont., and Durham MPP Granville Anderson attended the ribbon cutting ceremony Sunday. (CBC News)

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