The vast majority of us are aware that in May 2007, Madeleine McCann went missing from her holiday apartment in Portugal. The idea of being in her parents’ shoes scares the life out of most of us; what’s worse is that statistically a child goes missing every 3 minutes in the UK and you don’t hear about most of these cases. To quote Kate McCann ‘Before Madeleine went missing I was horrifyingly ignorant about it myself’.
As proven by the successful ‘milk carton campaign’ ran in America, getting a missing person’s face out there is a worthwhile exercise. One in Seven missing children are found due to a vigilant member of the public recognising their face. Experts claim that ongoing campaigns are vital with the main aim of pricking the conscience of someone who knows something until they come forward with information.
In light of the above, Kate McCann has become an ambassador for UK Charity ‘Missing People’. Together they are piloting a new appeal, that when I first heard about it, I didn’t quite understand why it hadn’t happened earlier. For 12 weeks, digital advertising space all over the UK will display photos and information for missing people – mostly children. The advertising space, worth £1million has been donated by outdoor media owners including Clear Channel, JCDecaux, Primesight and CBS Outdoor.
This summer will see a huge footfall across the country as we host the world’s largest event in 2012. It is estimated that the appeal will reach more than 10 million adults by featuring in major cities such as London, Birmingham, Manchester and Glasgow- across rail and underground networks, high streets and shopping centres. Being digital billboards it means that the information can be varied and updated almost immediately; this is not only effective, but vital when searching for someone lost.
I hope this appeal transforms into #workthatworks and these lost faces become part of daily commutes up and down the country.
If you spot a missing person ring 116 000