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Immediately after any disaster, volunteers - often the members of the local communities - play a crucial role in rescuing the survivors and bringing emergency relief and medical aid to them. As relief and aid arrive from other places, volunteers' responsibilities extend to post-disaster recovery and rehabilitation activities. In this slideshow, we bring you a snapshot of various roles volunteers play in response to disasters.

Read our collection of stories and resources that shows volunteerism to be a key element in providing emergency relief to disaster survivors and in post-disaster reconstruction.

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Thai Red Cross volunteers prepare meals for people living in the camp for displaced people in Ban Muang district. Many of these volunteers have come from central Thailand to the damaged west coast to help the tsunami victims. 
(Photo by Yoshi Shimizu /IFRC)Thai Red Cross volunteers prepare meals for people living in the camp for displaced people in Ban Muang district. Many of these volunteers have come from central Thailand to the damaged west coast to help the tsunami victims. (Photo by Yoshi Shimizu /IFRC)