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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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Schoolchildren collect money on a busy road for the earthquake victims of Jammu and Kashmir, in the southern Indian city of Bangalore October 14, 2005. Thunderstorms followed by cold weather promised more misery for survivors of the Kashmir earthquake at the weekend as the focus of international aid efforts turned on Friday from rescue to relief. 
(Photo by Jagadeesh NV/REUTERS)Schoolchildren collect money on a busy road for the earthquake victims of Jammu and Kashmir, in the southern Indian city of Bangalore October 14, 2005. Thunderstorms followed by cold weather promised more misery for survivors of the Kashmir earthquake at the weekend as the focus of international aid efforts turned on Friday from rescue to relief. (Photo by Jagadeesh NV/REUTERS)