Vietnam never had any established sanctuary for animals, until Cat Besch decided to intervene.

Besch, an American living in Vietnam, decided she could no longer be a bystander in a world where many animals are being abused and neglected. In 2013, she co-founded Vietnam Animal Welfare Organization, and then finally establishing her very own Vietnam Animal Aid and Rescue (VAAR).

VAAR started out as a rescue shelter for cats and dogs in Hoi An, Vietnam. She later on realized the need to help other animals such as chickens, monkeys, pigs, and even hedgehogs.

“Knowing we have been the reason for hundreds of animals helped in situations where there was no hope is satisfying,” Besch told Bored Panda in an interview. “We have broken a lot of barriers in the country with the very first non-profit vet clinic that we ran for 3 years, the first vegan education program, and the first farm sanctuary.”

VAAR became the first farm sanctuary in Vietnam with the mission of ending the pain and suffering of all species through mass sterilization, vaccinations, education, and improving veterinary services across Vietnam. They also advocate for a vegan lifestyle, and push for the abolition of all animal use and exploitation.

“Being outspoken for all species has been a big part of our work and one that I am very proud of,” she added.

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