Thursday, May 25, 2017

Education : International Missing Children's Day : resources

International Centre For Missing & Exploited Children

"Remembering children who have gone missing, and those who have been found."

Every year, 25 May is commemorated as International Missing Children’s Day.  

In 1983, U.S. President Ronald Reagan proclaimed May 25th National Missing Children’s Day.

Etan Patz
credits: Hodgson/ The New York Times
The proclamation followed the 1979 disappearance of a six-year-old boy, Etan Patz, on his way to school in New York City. The case generated widespread indignation, and concern for missing children rose across the nation. Since the United States began remembering missing children in this way, other countries around the world have adopted similar commemorations.

25 May is now widely known as Missing Children’s Day, with the forget-me-not flower as its emblem. 

The forget-me-not flower is the symbol of International Missing Children's Day.
In 2001, 25 May was first formally recognized as International Missing Children’s Day (IMCD), thanks to a joint effort on the part of ICMEC, Missing Children Europe and the European Commission.

250,000 children are reported missing every year in the EU, 1 child every 2 minutes.
A child is reported missing every 2 minutes in Europe. Our network of missing children hotlines is operated by local grassroots organisations in 31 countries in Europe. 
Children and families calling the 116 000 European hotline for missing children receive free and immediate emotional, psychological, social, legal and administrative support.

Missing Children Europe in 2016 focused on developing a project to monitor and improve the quality of services provided by 19 hotlines across Europe. 
"Achieving this quality criteria will ensure that children and families anywhere in Europe will have access to the same quality of support when faced with the unthinkable."
Children’s day commemorated on May 25 across the globe, Missing Children Europe has launched its new Figure and Trends on missing children report for 2016.

Annual Revue 2016/ Report

"Missing Children Europe's Annual Review describes the vision, efforts, our grassroots member organisations and the impact of the organisation for the past year. It provides a good summary of the work, successes and challenges from 2016."

The report features the evolution and trends on missing children cases in Europe handled by hotlines for missing children and the Cross-Border Family Mediators’ network. Hotlines for missing children are available through the same phone number - 116 000 - in 31 countries in Europe.  

Since 2015, this network of hotlines has helped an increasing number of children. In 2016, there was a 12% increase in children calling the hotlines compared to the previous year.

While 116 000 hotlines seem to have received fewer calls in 2016, these hotlines saw a doubling of contacts received through channels such as text message, email and chat.

In 2016, children running away or thrown out of home made up 57% of missing children cases reported to hotlines, consistently making the largest group of missing children. Parental abductions made up the second largest group at 23% of cases.

Consistent with reports that up to 50% of migrant children go missing from some reception centres in Europe within 48 hours, cases of missing migrant children saw an increase from 2% in 2015 to 7% in 2016. However, underreporting of these disappearances and a lack of clarity on roles and responsibilities regarding the prevention and response to this very vulnerable group remains a worrying issue. Criminal abductions made up less than 1% of cases reported in 2016 while lost, injured or otherwise missing children cases made up 13% of cases.


1 in 5 missing children cases were cross-border in nature showing the importance of cross-border cooperation between national governments, hotlines, law enforcement and other child protection authorities.

In 2016, 42% of missing children reported to the 116 000 hotline were found within the year, down from 46% in 2015. While more children have been found in the other four categories of missing children cases, there has been a significant drop in the number of runaways that were found (from 57% in 2015 to 46% in 2016). 

This unveils a vulnerable, often trivialised group of children whose problems at home or reasons for running away have persisted even after the first running away incident. Children running away repeatedly are forced to use increasingly risky strategies to survive, such as sleeping rough or begging and are exposed to huge risks of sexual exploitation.

Hotlines in several countries (Bulgaria, Cyprus, Greece, Romania, Serbia, Slovenia, and Spain) received no funding at all from national governments in 2016. In 2016, 15 hotlines received an action grant from the European Commission which started mid-2016 and will last up to 24 months.

The network of Cross-Border Family Mediators consists of 157 trained mediators from 37 countries, and is coordinated by Missing Children Europe. These trained mediators specialise in preventing and resolving family conflict including parental abductions. Compared to court proceedings, mediation is up to 60% cheaper and takes an average of 43 days to be resolved compared to 18 months when taken to court. However, too few cases seek mediation as a solution.~

Remumber/ app

Resources for parents & educators

  • App Remumber
More and more kids have smartphones. So this generation doesn’t remember phone numbers by heart anymore. 

But what if they lose their phone, or their battery dies? What if there’s a situation where your kid needs to contact you but doesn’t know your phone number?

Remumber is an app aimed at young children with smartphones. It helps children remember the phone number of their parents by changing their device security codes to a phone number. That way each time your child unlocks his/her smartphone, they practice dialing your phone number. 

Remumber changes the unlocking code of a mobile or tablet device into a phone number.

So every time your child unlocks the device, he or she practises your phone number until they know it by heart. 

Remumber, app/ Missing Children Europe
Winner Epica Awards 2016

Download the app:

Missing Children Europe received great feedback from users and was proposed different free media opportunities to communicate about the campaign during summer. But most of all, with hundreds of downloads in the first week, we helped a lot of children to remember their parents’ phone numbers in a couple of days. 

The Beginner's Guide 
to Running Away
from Home
Jennifer Larue Huget
  • Book:

What kid hasn’t wanted to make their parents feel sorry for treating him badly?
And how better to accomplish this than to run away? 

Here’s a guide showing how, from what to pack (gum–then you won’t have to brush your teeth) to how to survive (don’t think about your cozy bed). 

Ultimately, though, readers will see that there really is no place like home. 

Alexander and the Terrible,
Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day
Judith Viorst

Like Judith Viorst’s Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible No Good, Very Bad Day, here’s a spot-on portrait of a kid who’s had it. 

And like Maurice Sendak’s Where the Wild Things Are, it’s also a journey inside a creative kid’s imagination: that special place where parents aren’t allowed without permission.

Education :

Myosotis is commonly called "Forget-me-nots". And we can not forget every missing child.

As an educator, I can't ! I talk about it with my students helping them to understand the danger they face every day. 

In the classroom, we discuss the theme around some exemples of missing children and young people. 

They understand the difficulties they can face on the street on their way to school, or to home. And on 
the bad use of the Internet or social networks.

I invite them to talk with their parents, grandparents or to help their younger brothers or sisters.

I can't forget missing children in Europe and all over the world. Children are our future and they believe in a better world.


Copyright © 2017-Souto'sBlog,®

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Education : International Missing Children's Day : resources  bG-Souto is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Education : We can't hurt children and teenagers on their freedom !

"These are beautiful innocent children and teenagers – as are all children who are victims in these times of rage. This has really disturbed me. This world is going to a place I simply struggle to understand."

Michael Prest, Letters, The Guardian

Schools across the world are considering to help students understand the tragic events, in Manchester, UK, last night the 22th May 2017, after Ariana Grande's concert at the Manchester Arena targeted in an attack, when the 21,000-seat arena's foyer as fans left the concert.

An explosion in or around the foyer area that left thousands of people fleeing. Grande’s European tour, which was due to visit London before dates in Belgium, Poland, Germany has been suspended. All the concerts are suspended until June.

Children are among the 22 killed and 119 injured in a suicide bombing at the end of an Ariana Grande concert at Manchester Arena. Did you listen their voices on the video above? They were so happy!

The American pop star, who was not hurt in the blast, tweeted that she was “broken” by news of casualties.

Ariana Grande pictured during the show at Manchester Arena
credits: Mnrnickynack/ Instagram

"broken. from the bottom of my heart, i am so so sorry. i don't have words."

However on her official website not a single message or word pay tribute to young victims and their families.

However news said Ariana Grande offers to pay Manchester victims’ funerals. Is that enough for all her fans who look at the oficial website of their most loved pop singer.
It was revealed that Ariana Grande had cancelled her world tour following the horrific attack. The Grande’s European tour, which was due to visit London before dates in Belgium, Poland and Germany, was suspended. 

Can we even begin to feel the horror and concern of the parents and other adults who were at the venue clutching their children as they frantically sought a way out to safety? 

I watched the images and videos last night, a teenager (16-17-year-old) told she had heard the bang, knew immediately it was a bomb and, as per the Bataclan attack in Paris, feared that what would come next would be machine-gun fire. 

"What breeds this horror? What warped ideology causes you to forget the wrong in killing innocent youth – children as young as five – who were simply trying to enjoy an hour or two watching their star."

It was catastrophic for those young hearts watching their idol in the Manchester Arena on Monday night.

Desperate parents took to social media yesterday and today to report their children missing and tragically, for some, their kids were never to return home.

A lucky mother and daughter

There are brothers, sisters, parents, aunts and uncles who are now dead or badly injured in hospital. 

Many had worked and saved their money to give their children a special treat, to make them happy. What mad, sick, callous individual thinks doing this takes him or her anywhere but into the suffering of the hell that must await. 

These are beautiful innocent children and teenagers – as are all children who are victims in these times of rage. This has really disturbed me. This world is going to a place I simply don't understand or accept.

Sometimes, we
 wondering how to face the students and discussed such tragic events in the classroom. 

Students, watched television, read the news on the social networks, the oldest shared some cartoons on their profile photos, created by cartoonists all over the world.  And want to talk or make questions. 

The four young girls Georgina Callender (aged 18), Sattie Roussos (aged 8) Nell Jones (aged 14), Olivia Campbell (aged 15) are being remembered by parents, school mates and teachers.

Friends and teachers of the victims shed tears as they came together at her school to remember the beautiful young girls.*

They are all devastated by the loss and as a school community they must now come to terms with what has happened.

Tribute Manchester Arena victims
But not only at English schools. In Portugal, Portuguese teachers and I am sure a great number of teachers in the world held a minute's silence Tuesday, May 23 in their classrooms.

A great number of English and international schools are expressing the felings of the students on social networks.

Some of your students are expressing their feelings on such tragic events that are every where on the press, on television, social networks, even on the Manchester road.

And some of them, young-adults as social media users are sharing touching tributes to the victims of the killing. 

A candlelit vigil was held in Trafalgar Square from 6pm this evening


 “Go sing with the angels and keep smiling mummy loves you so much,” 

Olivia Campbell'mother

Schools are places of free speech.  Schools and teachers will be prepared to face students. And it’s just as clear that intimidation and violence will be condamned and combated for whatever reason they’re committed, especially if their goal is to undermine freedom and liberty of open societies.

How to talk about at school? I still remember September 11/2001, Paris, Brussels, Berlin, Zurick, Nice, Alepo

How to find the right words when overcome with sorrow our own emotion, and every word that comes to our mind can frighten the small kids : attack, terrorists dead, mourning, run, bombs?

Teachers must impose their words or ideas of adults.It is with enormous sadness that some of the people who lost their lives in Monday’s Manchester attack was one of their students.

The psychologists 
say that the best way is to start from the child heard or just ask "What you heard?" or "Did you hear what is going on right now What do you understand?"

A girl wearing a T-shirt of US singer Ariana Grande in Manchester the day after

 Photograph: Oli Scarff/AFP/Getty Images

Some thoughts: 

Of course after the first day in school, where it would probably - depending on age - a minute's silence, and had spoken with friends, kids and young people will have a partial and distorted view of the tragedy.

The important thing is to start with students words, to follow the thinking of the child or young-adult and not to impose our adult words. 

Back on their understanding is important because it has to be spoken, not to leave the child with what it will come up with some information that they had to correct what kids had not quite understand and answer questions. 

And of course, we don't forget our muslim students. They are in our classrooms. Their friends are their school mates.
Remembering the muslim taxi drivers who offered themselves to transport for free all the people abandoning Manchester Arena after the explosion the night (May 22).

More than ever, we must have the right word to express our emotion, our tears, our sorrow, but also our need for gathering and unity. 

"We tend to want to protect the children in our sorrow concerning the tragedy, but in toddlers 3 or 4 years, it can lead them to imagine terrible things, says the analyst.

It does not mean give details. This is the time to reaffirm that nothing can replace the word.

The oldest, high junior schools, will be happy to feel part of the adult community and stay with us to vigils, demonstrations, to "think in their head and in their heart to those who are not there". 

In the coming days, the schools will serve as a sounding board for what is said in the family. 

The school should be a place where their questions and confusions are listened: What is Islam? What is a religion? Will it nasty religions?

tribute in Manchester 
credits: Andy Rain/ EPA

It is also a debate that should have in the family. And not only when freedom is reached. It is not enough discussion of these topics.

I agree. Freedom starts at home and continues at school. Parents and schools or teachers have their own rules that must be respected for both sides parents/ teachers vs. kids/ students.

Teachers and parents. Just talk and share thoughts with your students or kids, no matter their age. Because they have a lot of questions, not just today, tomorrow and in the coming days. 

"No truth can cure the sorrow we feel from losing a loved one. No truth, no sincerity, no strength, no kindness can cure that sorrow. All we can do is see it through to the end and learn something from it, but what we learn will be no help in facing the next sorrow that comes to us without warning.” 

Haruki Murakami, Norwegian Wood 


Copyright © 2017-Souto'sBlog,®

* For respect to the young girls who deserve to preserve their privacy even after dead, I don't publish their photos.

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Education : We can't hurt children and teenagers on their freedom bG-Souto is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.