Every year, more than 800,000 children are reported missing. Facebook partnered with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children to help change that. If a child disappears, the social network will send out an Amber Alert to users in the area visible on the newsfeed.
“When people receive these alerts on their phones, we want them to know that this is very rare and they’re in a position to be able to help,” said Emily Vacher of Facebook.
The alert on individuals Facebook pages will include a picture of the child along with where the child was last seen and what he or she was wearing.
Mika Moulton founded Christopher’s Clubhouse after a man kidnapped and killed her son, Christopher.
“Here’s a great way to bring more missing children home,” she said.
According to Moulton, Amber Alerts play a critical role in the return of missing children.
“Many of the times the abductor sees the Amber Alert that’s been issued,” explained Moulton. “They will see it on the freeway, on the overpass, and they drop that kid off somewhere.”
Facebook is the first social media outlet to work with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.
“Let’s hope and pray it doesn’t happen here,” Moulton added. “But, if it does we have a resource. We’ve got the tools.”
It is important that people closely examine the child’s photo in the Amber Alert. Moulton also encourages individuals to read the alert’s description as well as what it says about the vehicle information.
“Take those couple of extra minutes,” concluded Moulton. “You can make such a difference in a child’s life.”