ISPCC Limerick marked International Missing Children’s Day last week to draw attention to the many children who are missing, as well as those who are victims of parental abduction, trafficking, or who have run away.
The ISPCC 116 000 missing children’s hotline has been operational in Ireland since December 2012 following the receipt of financial support from the EU and The Department of Children and Youth Affairs.
More than 30,000 cases of missing children have been reported to the Gardaí since 2008. In 2013, the ISPCC received 523 calls to the Missing Children Hotline.
The calls were for a variety of reasons — young people calling the hotline when they are thinking about running away from home, adults also called looking for information and parents called looking for advice and support. Every year around 6,000 people are reported missing in Ireland. While over 95 per cent are found in a short period of time, the effect on families, friends and the missing person can be devastating.