Ma-se Ta-ngam was among the elderly people affected by the tsunami in Thailand. The livelihoods of thousands of fishermen and traditional craftsmen were wiped out by the disaster.


Ma-se Ta-ngam was among the people affected by the tsunami when it hit Thailand’s Andaman Coast. More than 8,000 people were killed.


Red Cross volunteer Juliawati works with communities in Aceh, Indonesia planting mangroves to protect villages from future tidal surges.


Juliawati was studying in Banda Aceh when the tsunami struck and survived by jumping in a passing car. “I thought for certain that my mother and sister were dead,” she said.


Mohamed Yoosuf saved the lives of two children when the tsunami hit the Maldives, but it was two days before he found out his own family had survived. “For 48 hours, I couldn’t eat a morsel of food,” he said.


Mohamed Yoosuf feared he would drown as he fought for his life in rising water in the Maldives. “There were times I couldn’t breathe, I couldn’t do anything.


Krisana Lertkulton and her daughter Jirapha were lucky to escape with their lives when the tsunami swept through their hotel in Khao Lak. Many staff and tourists were killed.


The tsunami left Krisana Lertkulton’s hotel seriously damaged and she almost lost her daughter to the wave. After the disaster she became a volunteer with the Thai Red Cross.


Mohamed Zahir was assistant island chief of Vilufushi island in the Maldives at the time of the tsunami. “Thank God my wife and children were safe but my grandmother was among the dead. We found her body from a nearby uninhabited island. We buried her there.”


Mohamed Zahir, assistant island chief of Vilufushi island in the Maldives on December 26 2004. “I was the only one who stayed on the island after wave hit. The affection and connection I have to this land is bigger than anything.”


Zakira S, Ibrahim HS, Abu Bakar Amar are friends and fishermen from west Aceh, Indonesia. Most of their relatives and neighbours were killed when the tsunami hit their coastal village.


Abu Bakar Amar from west Aceh, Indonesia, lost most of his neighbours and many relatives during the tsunami.


Abdullah Nizar, from Vilufushi, Maldives was washed into a tree when the wave hit. “As soon as the wave passed and the water level dropped, I went inside the house to see my wife and children. It was a miracle that they were safe inside the house. Still tears come to my eyes when I think of that moment.


Abdullah Nizar was chatting to his friends when they noticed a change in the sea’s colour on the horizon in Vilufishi island in the Maldives. “It was something you we don’t see every day so I went inside the house to get my camera. Before I could come out started hearing the screams and the strong sound of the wave. Somehow I grabbed onto a coconut tree from the water and climbed up it, still trying to save my camera.”

2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami survivors. International Federation of Red Cross.