VICTORIA -- An animal sanctuary and rescue facility on Vancouver Island will undergo a complete reconstruction thanks to the help of celebrity and activist Pamela Anderson.

It is demolition day at RASTA Animal Sanctuary in Chemainus, and crews are tearing down an old, dilapidated barn to make way for its replacement.

It’s something that wouldn’t have been possible without a major celebrity endorsement.

In a video livestream on the sanctuary’s Facebook page Tuesday morning, Anderson could be seen taking a sledgehammer to the side of the old and worn-down barn.

"Where are the excavators?" Anderson jokingly asked, after a few whacks.

In a fateful turn of events, Anderson saw the sanctuary’s sign while driving by last month and then reached out to ask for a tour.

"It was a wonderful visit, and she left," said RASTA Sanctuary founder Lucie Cerny.

"A few hours later, she returned with her partner, Dan Hayherst, who is a builder, and expressed an interest in wanting to help us build a brand-new barn."

RASTA Sanctuary started in Alberta but moved to Chemainus five years ago. The sanctuary rescues and cares for a wide range of farm animals and will be celebrating its 20th anniversary in January.

Unfortunately, for the past few years the shelter has been in desperate need of a new barn.

"I can see you guys tried to keep it dry in there... 'A' for effort," Anderson said in Tuesday’s livestream.

Now the old barn is being torn down and Anderson’s workers will take care of all the labour. RASTA Sanctuary will use the money it was saving up for the replacement to cover the cost of materials.

"It is absolutely surreal. I have to pinch myself every once in a while to just really understand the gravity of all that’s happening," Cerny said.

"The fact that she was interested in the sanctuary and what it is that we do and wanted to help us is such a tremendous gift," she said.

Once the new barn is complete, it will feature an upper hay loft and will be used for animal intake, medical treatment, overnight sheltering and feeding.