When disaster strikes first responders such as fire fighters, police officers and medical staff are on the job. But what happens when the dust settles and the clean-up begins? Then it becomes the responsibility of dedicated volunteers to clear debris, distribute water and hand out blankets. Volunteer Fairfax may be activated in an emergency by Fairfax County or the City of Fairfax to coordinate the deployment of spontaneous volunteers to assist in the recovery of affected communities. This process may require the establishment of a Volunteer Mobilization Center to properly identify the incoming volunteers and to coordinate among agencies involved in the recovery. Depending on the scale of the emergency, Volunteer Fairfax may be activated to one of three levels:
Activation of Volunteer Fairfax also includes the recruitment of spontaneous volunteers to assist all organizations involved in the response and recovery efforts of a disaster. It is important for any local agency that may utilize spontaneous unaffiliated volunteers in an emergency to familiarize themselves with the Volunteer Mobilization Center Model and local plans for utilizing those volunteers.