Missing Child Kenya works with partners and volunteers in the child protection sector and the public to help share information on missing children using varied media platforms and increase search efforts at no cost to the affected families.
From collective experiences both personal and professional we understand that facts, photos and time play a big role in sharing information about a missing child. It is therefore the goal of Missing Child Kenya to boost search efforts for missing children by sharing photo posters to as broad an audience and in the fastest of time as possible.
The Missing Child Kenya team provides free resources for the search of missing children between the ages of 0-18 in the following ways:
- Counseling you on ways to search for your child.
- Creating a personalized missing child poster for your child.
- Distributing your child’s poster appropriately.
- Posting your child’s photo/poster on the Missing Child Kenya platforms and networks.
- Helping you work with your community, law enforcement (police) and the media (mainstream and online social media).
We continually seek to make our community outreach efforts more sustainable. While mobile phone penetration has increased significantly in Kenya, we still experience some challenges in terms of access to smart phones and internet connectivity for Kenyans in lower income settlements and the rural inaccessible areas. This means some families may not be able to access information on their missing children using technological communication platforms.
It is with this reason in mind that we have started the physical notice board projects that list our missing children within Nairobi. With support from our 2016 Christmas Campaign we started off with the Nairobi Children’s Court in January 2017. Nairobi Children’s Court, the largest exclusively children’s court in Kenya handles children in conflict with the law as well as children in need of care and protection (truant, lost, abused, abandoned or run away children). It is also the central receiving point for all missing, lost and found children in Nairobi.
The noticeboard has helped increase awareness on the issue of missing children because all visitors to the children’s court area can see it. A worried and distraught parent that has arrived to make a report can quickly go through the listed alerts to confirm if their child may already have been brought to the Court. Important leads and referrals have arisen from the crowd sourcing approach of well-wishers and concerned citizens sharing our missing child posters. Proactive reports on missing children have increased and more importantly, we have been able to document cold cases as far back as 5 years ago.
The documentation of the cases through posters is very important because from it we have been able to start observing patterns and trends with respect to ages, gender and hotspots (geographical locations). The poster format we use has also helped to educate and create awareness on how to report and share information about missing children in a manner that will yield result. We openly share our data with all interested partners in the child welfare and protection sector because child protection issues cut across several mandates. A consolidated database with all record of missing children helps boost search and reunification process while helping to monitor and understand trends.
Our safety education program –Simba Safe Kenya derives a lot of practical educational information that is used when conducting our child safety training programs to the different audiences; children, parents, caregivers (nannies) and teachers.
On March 24 2017 Missing Child Kenya also installed a noticeboard at Kibera Law Courts Nairobi with the main aim of creating an information hub for families that have lost their children within Kibera and its environs. With the kind assistance and permission of the executive office of Kibera Law Courts, the notice board was placed at the entrance of the court building, adjacent to Court Room 1 where all incoming and outgoing visitors can be able to see information on missing children.
We are thankful to the support of YGAP though Spark* Kenya Change Makers Program for this noticeboard and with their continued support we hope to install another noticeboard at the Makadara District Children’s Office which is adjacent to the Makadara Law Courts in Eastlands (Nairobi) in April 2017.
Join Missing Child Kenya in creating for our children a culture and community of concerned and proactive Kenyans. We value you as our eyes, ears and voice on the ground as we work on track, trace and reunification efforts for missing children in Kenya.