International Missing Children’s Day (IMCD) is observed every year on May 25 globally since 2001. The day aims to raise awareness on the issue of child abduction, educate parents on safeguarding measures to protect their children.
i.History of the day: In 1983, former US President Ronald Reagen declared May 25 as United States (US) National Missing Day. The date was chosen following the disappearance of 6 year old boy Etan Patz on May 25, 1979, who was kidnapped on his way to school in New York City, US.
ii.In the year 2001, May 25 was declared as IMCD due to the efforts of International Centre for Missing and Exploited Children (ICMEC), Missing Children Europe and the European Commission.
iii.Football Cares 2020: The football community will unite to mark IMCD on May 25, 2020. Clubs, national teams, leagues, federations, players and governing bodies all over the world will be able to share a video on Twitter featuring photos of missing children in the hopes they are recognized and united with their families.
iv.This awareness event is run in conjunction with the Global Missing Children’s Network (GMCN). The network, which formed in 1998, has 23 member countries who all connect in order to share information & best practice, working towards improving the effectiveness and success rate of missing children investigations.
v.Symbol: The forget-me-not flower is the symbol of International Missing Children’s Day.
vi.Every year, more countries commemorate IMCD, acknowledging the need for a harmonized response to protect vulnerable children.
About International Centre for Missing and Exploited Children (ICMEC):
Headquarters– Alexandria, Virginia, US.
Chairman– Dr. Franz B. Humer.