To quote SkeeterMurphy: ARES is "a group that helps the local community during disasters. We help local government, the Red Cross, and others with their communications needs when the 'normal' methods like phones and cell phones don't work. To get practice, we help organizations that do walk-a-thons, parades, bike events, boat events, fireworks shows, etc... Sometimes we act as the dispatcher for sherrif, CHP, private security, bus transportation, and many others."
You can find out more about [Skeeter's involvement with HAM Radio] on his wiki page (which also provides cool links) and for a more general introduction, check out WikiPedia:Amateur_Radio.
Hopefully, Skeeter will tell the other people in the ARES club about this page, and they'll fill it in with some more useful info.
What do you think? -- SkeeterMurphy