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International Missing Children's Day drives urgency for a global response

International Missing Children's Day drives urgency for a global response

We are sharing this press release on behalf of ICMEC, ahead of International Missing Children’s Day on 25th May:

The International Centre for Missing and Exploited Children's (ICMEC's) Global Missing Child Network (GMCN) recognizes 25th May as the day where we remember the children that are still missing, commemorate the children who have been recovered and celebrate those that are safely back home.

Over one million children are reported missing annually around the globe and the  International Centre's GMCN believes that one missing child is too many. The reality is that it’s very difficult to get accurate missing children numbers from many countries. But we do know that conservative estimates from fewer than a dozen countries quickly adds up to more than a million missing children. At The International Centre, we are tirelessly looking for ways to quantify the real numbers which we fear total well into the multi-millions.

The 29 GMCN member-countries across 4 continents have been created to remind the world that a missing child is a vulnerable child and that every country must implement a global framework that includes a definition and a comprehensive response to the issue. “We are dedicated to contributing to the GMCN’s goal of uniting and mobilizing the global community to find missing children.” said Commander Justine Gough, Manager Child Protection, Australian Federal Police. “Each year we are proud to commemorate International Missing Children’s Day to highlight our commitment to keeping children safe worldwide”.

25th May is recognized as International Missing Children’s Day – a day where each of the 29 countries will use the International Centre’s GMCNgine to launch a public appeal for a missing child to build awareness and generate leads on the missing child’s whereabouts. The GMCNgine is a powerful technology enabled and activated platform using facial recognition and geo-targeted alerts to find any missing child and their companion through customized, multilingual posters that are strategically broadcasted in each GMCN country. The platform will generate new leads while reminding the world that we will never stop searching for these children. The GMCNgine is not only a collaborative effort between the GMCN countries but is also comprised of the technology and expertise of six partners: AWS, Biometrica, C5, FIA, First Factory, and Web IQ. This is the first of it’s kind collaboration between elite tech partners and showcases revolutionary tools that are finally available to investigate cases.

These collaborative efforts will show that gathering the data necessary to impact change is a global responsibility. If the UN Sustainable Development Goals are going to end violence against children by 2030, then there is a need to address the methods in which children become vulnerable to violence. “No matter the reason behind a child going missing, a missing child is vulnerable to violence and exploitation,” said Caroline Humer, Director of the Global Missing Children’s Center which oversees the GMCN. “We must unite to create global guidelines and from there a global response.”

Paul Shapiro, CEO of The International Centre added, “We have partners who understand how to collaborate the best of what their technology can offer, and aim that effort towards one of the most important missions that we have as a unified global culture – to protect our children from harm”.

On 25th May, look for your country’s missing child alert and their events to keep children safe and remember that the GMCNgine keeps searching relentlessly to make sure that no child stands alone. On 25th May, we unite to help bring them home.

About the International Centre for Missing & Exploited Children: Partnering with every industry from government and technology to sports and entertainment through six dedicated programmes to advance every country's child protection capabilities. We promise to unite the world in the prevention, response, recovery and healing of every missing, abused and exploited child to make certain that no matter where they are or how they got there, no child stands alone.

Contact: Laura Jennings

Email: ljennings@icmec.org

Website: www.icmec.org

Social: @ICMEC

@ICMEC_Official

#IntlMissingChildrensDay

#BringThemHome

#NoChildStandsAlone