25 May 2012
Missing People launch new helpline and website to reach thousands of missing children
To mark International Missing Children's Day, Missing People has launched a new free helpline (116 000) and website (www.missingkids.co.uk).
With the support of Downing Street and funding provided by you, our players, it's hoped that the new services will help the thousands of children who go missing every year.
Missing People are working in connection with Child Exploitation and Online Protection (CEOP) Centre and PACT. The charities' initiatives are in response to the Government's Missing Children and Adults Strategy, launched in December 2011.
The launch of these new services was also the focus of a formal Downing Street reception on Wednesday 23 May. The event was hosted by the Home Secretary, Rt Hon Theresa May. Supporters and campaigners, including People's Postcode Lottery representatives, were joined by key organisations and celebrities in order to raise awareness of the plight of thousands of children who go missing every year.
The launch of the 116 000 helpline, provided by Missing People, will be supported by a TV, cinema and outdoor advertising campaign by creative agency BBH.
On 25 May, hundreds of London taxis will raise awareness of missing children with appeals in the back of their cabs. These will include an appeal for Andrew Gosden, who went missing in September 2007 at the age of 14. He was last seen at London's Kings Cross Station.
Today is also the Big Tweet, a Twitter incentive backed by Missing People patron, Stephen Fry. Twitter users are being asked to share their support for the charity by retweeting appeals for missing children.
Speaking about the campaign, Stephen said: "A staggering 140,000 children go missing in the UK every year. On International Missing Children's Day (Friday 25 May), I will once again join the charity Missing People in harnessing the power of Twitter to help find missing children via The Big Tweet for Missing Children. You can take part too, by retweeting the appeals for missing children that the charity will tweet every 30 minutes, for 24 hours.”
Together, People's Postcode Lottery players have raised a staggering £1.8 Million for Missing People to date.