SANDY HOOK, Conn. (WTNH) – An incredible animal sanctuary honoring a little girl lost in the Sandy Hook tragedy is growing and expanding.

Five years clearing the land, nine years honoring her daughter. With help from animal lovers in Newtown, an idea was born promoting love and peace.

“They described the sanctuary as a place where children would see their own innate beauty in the eyes of the animals they encounter, and I saw Catherine loving it and said, ‘yeah, let’s do it,’” said Jennifer Hubbard.

In 2014, the state gifted 34 acres to what is now the Catherine Violet Hubbard Animal Sanctuary, honoring a first-grader lost in the Sandy Hook tragedy. A pavilion sculpture was designed to be a symbol of Jennifer Hubbard’s daughter.

“They said, ‘it’s Catherine standing watching and welcoming people,’” Jennifer said.

Welcoming people to what will soon be an incredible building with one wing devoted to human education, the other supporting animal care efforts with a focus on veterinarian services and important programs.

“What we’ve found is that a lot of older adults are at risk for surrendering their pet because they fall on the slightest financial hardship. We can send a mobile vet into the community and provide wellness care for these animals and make a huge impact for seniors that go unnoticed,” Jennifer said.

Right on the gorgeous plot of land is the sanctuary that hosts countless educational workshops.

“We have a whole beekeeping series which is cool. It’s hands-on at our beehive. In May, we’re doing Goats Galore. What’s not better than baby goats,” Jennifer said.

The sanctuary is also intended to be a place for healing where we can appreciate the magic of nature and find quiet in our busy world. Catherine is with her mom in this space always.

There are all sorts of events coming up at the sanctuary, including monthly hikes and Catherine’s Butterfly Party.

For more information, click here.