On June 23rd, Portuguese NGO Instituto de Apoio à Criança (IAC) officially joined AMBER Alert Europe. The partnership follows a successful collaboration on the #DontBeAnEasyCatch prevention campaign, which aimed to educate children, teenagers specifically, on online grooming.

“I am happy to expand our collaboration with Instituto de Apoio à Criança”, says Frank Hoen, Chairman and Founder of AMBER Alert Europe. “They have been an established name in the field of children’s rights in Europe for many years and I look forward to working with them and learn from their expertise in the future.”

“IAC is very proud of this new partnership, because Portugal has been developing work in the field of missing children for a long time. This collaboration will streamline procedures in the case of missing children and we hope to find them more quickly and effectively”, according to Maria João Cosme of IAC.

Instituto de Apoio à Criança

IAC is a non-profit organisation which was established in 1983 by a group of people with different professional backgrounds- doctors, magistrates, teachers, psychologists, lawyers, sociologists, social service technicians, and educators. Its main objective is to contribute to the integral development of the child, as well as to defend its rights.

Since 2004, IAC has been managing the 116 000 hotline, the European hotline number for missing children, in Portugal. The hotline provides free, immediate life-saving support when children go missing. Calls are answered locally by trained and professional staff from organisations specialising in dealing with cases of missing children by providing emotional, psychological, social, administrative, and legal advice.