Child Focus increases the reach of Child Alert thanks to partnership with Facebook

Tuesday, May 22, 2018 — Starting today, there is a new way to help you locate a missing child simply by checking your Facebook News Feed. Facebook is proud to team up with Child Focus to send alerts to the Facebook Community when a child has gone missing. This was announced this morning by Child Focus and Facebook at a press round table in Brussels. With this partnership, the promotors hope to inform more citizens as quickly as possible when a child goes missing.

Heidi De Pauw, Chief Executive Officer of Child Focus, is delighted with the collaboration.

“When a child is missing and in danger, an extra pair of eyes can make all the difference. Our Child Alerts already reach a big audience thanks to advertising screens, highway signs and text messages, but now they can be sent through Facebook, even more people will participate in the search, which significantly increases the chances of bringing the child back home safely.”

Emily Vacher, Facebook’s Director Trust and Safety is proud to partner with Child Focus’s Child Alert

“Today’s launch clearly shows the determination of our Belgian partners to increase the reach of Child Alert”, said Vacher. “We know that when a child is missing, the most valuable thing we can do is get information out to the public as fast as possible. By getting the right information to the right people at the right time through Child Alerts on Facebook, we hope to reunite missing children with their families faster.”


How it works

As soon as a magistrate (attorney or examining magistrate who’s in charge of the case of the missing child) fears that the life of a missing child is in imminent danger, they have the authority to issue a Child Alert. Up till now, Child Alerts were spread through advertising screens, highway signs, apps, text messages and e-mail. Facebook users who like the Facebook page of Child Focus could also see the alert in their newsfeed. Because of the the partnership with Facebook, the Child Alert is not limited anymore to the likers of the Child Focus page. Facebook sends a Child Alert to the News Feed of all Facebook users who are in the direct environment in Belgium on that moment. “It includes a picture of the child and any information that the public would need to be able to help find this child, for example a description of the vehicle,” says Emily Vacher, Trust and Safety Manager at Facebook Security. “People will also be able to share the Child Alert with their Facebook friends, in hopes of extending the reach even further,” she concludes.



NOTE FOR EDITORS, NOT FOR PUBLICATION
For questions or information requests, please contact Tineke Meijerman, Facebook Benelux | tineke@fb.com
To order pictures of the event, please contact Koen Baumers of Bepublic | koen@bepublic.be| +32 472 87 21 68

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Koen Baumers

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Tineke Meijerman

Facebook Benelux