It was a giant wave bowling in at 200 kilometres per hour destroying everything in its path. The tsunami of the 26th December 2004 killed more than 230,000 people.
After the disaster, according to the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, 11-billion euros in aid flowed into NGO coffers.
In Sri Lanka, the country worst affected after Indonesia, the tsunami also made more than half a million people homeless.
Over the past five years NGOs have funded a widespread programme to re-build villages, and schools and have injected money through micro-credit schemes to help put roofs over people’s heads, and to get them back into business.
Post-tsunami Sri Lanka - Five years on