Meet MyFriends! The Voice Foundation with Chollada ‘Kae’ Sirisant (Mekratri)

“Would the world would be a better place without strays?”

Similar questions have probably popped up in the hearts of all animal lovers. And this includes Chollada ‘Kae’ Sirisant (Mekratri) who started her journey of bettering stray animal lives since the 2011 Bangkok Floods. After witnessing the tragedy and how many friends were left behind, the Voice project (our voice) began. Then The Voice Foundation started in 2013, and has taken care of over 800 cases (on the 17th of January 2023).

Today, MyFriend is taking you all to meet Kae and listen in on the foundation that brings a voice to animals that need them the most. And, we can also get a look into how us pet lovers can support and help these little furry friends have a better life too!

Please introduce yourself and The Voice Foundation!

Hello, I’m Chollada Mekratri, the president and founder of The Voice Foundation.

What is the beginning of The Voice?

The Voice Foundation began in 2011. Around the time Bangkok was experiencing the floods, we were volunteering to help humans, then it evolved into helping animals stuck in houses. We started with dogs and cats, and two months later, from dogs and cats, it turned into all animals. We help all lives, it was really all lives, beyond humans too.

The Voice then became the representative. We want to help every animal that was affected by the flood. When that subsided, I thought to myself, our country doesn’t really have any foundation that specifically helps or supports this particular aspect. We didn’t have a clear voice that helped these strays.

10 years ago, helping animals… I felt like it was something far from the general public’s reach. But nowadays, I truly believe we’ve become more empathetic. It has become something closer to us, and easier to reach. You can see so many pages of volunteers, people who donate their time for these animals. The Voice is also selective with our volunteers representing the voices of the animals that need help. That’s how the name The Voice began as well. Because animals can’t speak for themselves, we speak for them.

What are some of the common cases you find?

Believe it or not, around half the cases are accidents. Around the sidewalks, whether they were hit, hurt, or grazed. Even accidents that were unintentional as well, for example, some animals were sick, people were disgusted and chased away, then they ran into the streets and got hit by a car. Accidents are the most common cases we find. But the other half are abandoned animals.

I have to say, for accidents, we can’t control them. That’s why they’re called accidents. Because they’re unintended. But those who hurt animals, or owned them and still harmed them, are the cases that my team and I really can’t stomach. The owner might hurt them from anger, or for other reasons, being drunk, or high, there are so many cases like this. For a while, I felt like “why do you have to harm them?” They’re with you every day, some for over 10 years. These cases make me really emotional.

And during covid, there were really elderly dogs that were also blind. They were howling and barking, and the owner hit them to death. Is this really what humans do? I felt so upset. My team and I, all said that after working here, the more we help animals, the more we resent humans. Humans can be so cruel. Some humans are the best, but you can also find the worst. Hurt the life that’s been with you for over 10 years, they used to take the best care of them, these cases upset me so much.

But we have to thank social media. It’s a mirror that can reflect almost instantly. Do good and receive praise, those who do bad things, don’t worry. There is a whole army of people who will expose the evil doings. So that’s why, if you see any animal hurt nowadays, sharing it on social media, you’ll find everyone who’s willing to help. Even hearing abnormal noises or dogs or cats getting abused, you can see if the owner is doing anything with ill intent.

Sometimes, one life, one breath, just one second that you ignore, can cost everything. That’s such a shame. Everyone can help save a life. And nowadays, laws protecting animals exist. Since 2014, it hasn’t been used effectively. Probably because animals can’t go to court themselves. That’s why, every time you witness abuse, you are the one that can help change their lives.

Go to the police, and if they take too much time, or something is stalling the process, come to the foundation. Bring the daily report, or file a report to us, and we will help with the process so the case moves forward. This will help save time and save lives. Please remember this for animal abuse cases.

If stray animals had a voice, what do you think they would say?

I am confident and I believe that every life will ask for a home. A resting place to hide from the weather. I want to say that finding homes for these animals is one of the toughest things to do as a foundation. Helping animals escape death is no longer a difficult task if we have the money. A good doctor, the specific doctor can help us there. Compared to a stray that wants a home, it requires so much more. Or for them to be accepted in society too.

Anything else you would like to add for the audience?

Count my voice as another one, pleading and begging you to adopt, don’t shop. As the first pet, you want a cute pet in your house. I understand this, but one day you will want a 2nd or 3rd pet. I really beg you, the first pet I had was a gift as well. The first dog in my life, Pang Pond, was the only one that came to us in “perfect condition.” The rest were adopted. We took them all in.

When we open our hearts to them, our love will show us that all lives deserve love. Just truly see them. And these animals, especially strays that are finding homes, or finding their parents, you can find them on The Voice’s page. We will have a hashtag called #หมาเดอะวอยซ์หาบ้าน, it’s super easy to find. Hashtags like #หมาเดอะวอยซ์หาบ้าน or #แมวเดอะวอยซ์หาบ้าน We have so many cases looking for a home. Please open your hearts. They will give you loyalty, cuteness, and love. And these guys are super good as a companion too! You have to see for yourselves.

How can we contact The Voice Foundation?

Now we have one channel of communication. We have a LINE Official called @thevoicecenter. We accept everything, complaints, advice, finding homes, funding, or even for blood donation when animals are hurt, we have admins that will reply to everyone.

Thank you so much!

MyFriend would like to thank Chollada ‘Kae’ Sirisant (Mekratri) and The Voice Foundation for sharing these insightful views and inspiring stories for us today. Helping strays isn’t just helping a life that has been abandoned and forgotten, but the joy, smile, and happiness that one feels when these furry friends are in a better place are priceless and unforgettable.

If you are interested in learning more or giving a friend a new chance at life, you can support The Voice Foundation through these channels below:

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