Matthew Farden (right) took mister Blake (left) on a tour of The Happy Herd sanctuary farm in Aldergrove. Courtesy Traci Farden

Surrey boy’s birthday wish raises $13,500 for rescued farm animals

Matthew Farden received a large donation from the mister Blake Foundation towards a sanctuary farm.

Last month, a boy from South Surrey launched a fundraiser for The Happy Herd farm sanctuary in Aldergrove.

And last Saturday, eleven-year-old Matthew Farden, who attends Surrey’s Morgan Elementary school, received an unexpected $10,000 donation towards the cause from the “mister Blake Foundation” – a Vancouver philanthropic organization that aims to make a difference locally and globally.

READ MORE: A GoFundMe for the goats

The founder and owner of the foundation only goes by the name “mister Blake,” and he called Matthew a “smart, intelligent, well-groomed young man.”

After seeing Matthew’s fundraiser on the news, mister Blake toured the farm with Matthew and offered a $10,000 donation to build a roof on a new barn that is under construction.

“I went out and checked the place out. I think they’re doing very well on a small scale,” said mister Blake.

On his own, Matthew raised $3,500 for The Happy Herd through a GoFundMe campaign by asking friends, family, and community members to make a donation in lieu of gifts for his 11th birthday.

Matthew was inspired to raise the money for the farm because he’s been volunteering there every Saturday for the last six months.

With the latest contribution, Matthew has fundraised $13,500 in total for the farm.

Matthew’s mother Traci Farden, said her son’s campaign has been “phenomenal,” as Matthew’s efforts exceeded his orignal goal of $1,000 very quickly.

“When we hit $1,000 we were pretty excited and it kept climbing. It’s been such an amazing experience. I’m super proud of him [Matthew], it makes me emotional. I can’t believe a little boy’s wish, such a simple thing, has grown to be so wonderful and have a great impact. He’s very subtle about it all.”

After hearing that mister Blake wanted to donate to her son’s campaign, Traci said it was “emotional” to see so much support.

“What a heart of gold. It’s a pretty neat thing that someone local can see someone on the news and want to be a part of it,” added Traci.

And the large donation came at the perfect time, as the farm’s expenses increase approximately 30 per cent in the winter because the animals require more bedding and food to stay warm, according to The Happy Herd co-owner Diane Marsh.

“We are amazed at the kind of response we get, [and] the love. And the people that come here and send us emails saying ‘what you’ve done has affected us so much, we’ve gone vegan,’ that’s what keeps us going. It’s not money, it’s the love that comes back.”

More information on The Happy Herd can be found online at https://happyherd.org/

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The strip mall which includes 3 Dogs Brewing on Johnston Road is the site of a proposed 23-storey development given preliminary discussion at White Rock’s Land Use and Planning Committee meeting Oct. 26. (File photo)
White Rock tower would need to provide amenities: council

A 23-storey proposal for uptown could include new city hall facilities

Ranil Prasad saw this poster near Surrey Central SkyTrain station on Monday, Oct. 26, 2020. He said it expressed “some specific reference to white replacement theory.” (Photo: Ranil Prasad/@run_neil/Twitter)
Surrey man urges public to watch out for ‘white replacement theory’ posters

Ranil Prasad said he saw the messaging at a Surrey SkyTrain station

Washington State Department of Agriculture workers, wearing protective suits and working vacuumed a nest of Asian giant hornets from a tree Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020, in Blaine, Wash. Scientists in Washington state discovered the first nest earlier in the week of so-called murder hornets in the United States and worked to wipe it out Saturday morning to protect native honeybees. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
Nest of ‘murder hornets’ found near South Surrey

String of traps set up along border to capture Asian giant hornets

Construction of Douglas College's Surrey Campus in 1970. (Photo: Douglas College Archives)
PHOTOS: Douglas College’s Surrey roots at a B.C.-first campus in 1970

The official date of the Douglas/Kwantlen split was April 1, 1981

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry arrives for briefing on the COVID-19 situation, B.C. legislature, Oct. 26, 2020 (B.C. government)
B.C. records 217 more COVID-19 cases, mask use urged

Infection spike continues, 21 senior facilities affected

FILE – The Queen of Alberni ferry leaves the Tsawwassen Ferry Terminal in Delta bound for Vancouver Island, Sunday, July 29, 2007. (CP PHOTO/Richard Lam) CANADA
Mechanical failure leaves nearly 200 passengers stranded on BC Ferries ship for hours

A tug arrived after dark to safely nudge the vessel into a berth so travellers could finally disembark

Ridge Meadows RCMP (Black Press)
Maple Ridge X-ray tech convicted of sexual assault dating back 30 years

Allen James Brooks is expected to be sentenced in January 2021

BC Liberal Leader Andrew Wilkinson leaves the stage after announcing he is stepping down as party leader, during a news conference in Burnaby, B.C., on Monday, October 26, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Too rural, not enough diversity, soul searching needed, say BC Liberals

Elections BC says there are about 600,000 mail-in and absentee ballots across the province still to count

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau makes his way to provide an update on the COVID pandemic in Ottawa on Tuesday, Oct. 27, 2020. Canada has reached a grim milestone in the COVID-19 pandemic, surpassing 10,000 novel coronavirus deaths. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Alberta COVID deaths pushes Canada past milestone of 10,000 deaths

Canada crossed the threshold of 5,000 deaths on May 12, a little over two months after the first was reported

An elderly woman wearing a face mask to curb the spread of COVID-19 walks past an advertisement for a television series in Vancouver, B.C., Sunday, Aug. 30, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. has been under a COVID-19 state of emergency for more than half the year

Province has been under a state of emergency for 32 weeks – and counting

Los Angeles Dodgers celebrate after defeating the Tampa Bay Rays 3-1 to win the baseball World Series in Game 6 Tuesday, Oct. 27, 2020, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
L.A. Dodgers beat Rays 3-1 to win 1st World Series title since 1988

National League champs claim crown in six games

Most Read