The problem of missing children is a complex and multi-faceted phenomenon, comprising legal, psychological and sociological aspects, which are aggravated due to the imminent panic of the close environment of the missing person.
From the moment a child disappears, an intensive, yet typical, procedure is usually followed: Initially, a formal report is made by the family to the responsible authorities (in most cases to the police), in order to examine the conditions, the vulnerability and the risk level associated with the disappearance, before declaring the involved child as “missing”.
Then, search and rescue teams are composed with urgency, making available their assets, human resources and know-how. In cases of worrying or life threatening disappearances, the public is alerted through the National Public Emergency Broadcast System (TV and Radio spots, SMS, web directories of missing children and social media networks) and can provide critical information through hotline numbers.
When the case is resolved, it is archived by the involved organizations and the necessary support and assistance is provided to the person and its family in order to reconnect with a place of safety.
In this context, ChildRescue aims at effectively and timely raising collective awareness and instigating instant community action during the investigation of missing children.
The phases of the missing children investigation cycle, on which the ChildRescue focus lies, include:
- (a) the Preparation phase, where information is collected and advanced profiling methods are employed in order to detect a possible disappearance of a Child in Migration, and to lead the investigation for every missing child’s case to appropriate directions from its onset,
- (b) the Coordination phase, with new models for collaboration between the (voluntary) organizations, caretakers, and search and rescue teams, based on insights from modern data analytics,
- (c) the Action phase, that facilitates collective intelligence in order to motivate both society and search and rescue teams to seamlessly contribute to the research,
- (d) the Archiving phase, where the case is closed in a secure and privacy-respectful manner.