To mark the 21st International Missing Children’s Day, Wunderman Thompson and Child Focus have launched a striking new campaign built around a website that can only be kept alive by the general public – just like the collective hope for the return of missing children.
A non-profit organization based out of Belgium, Child Focus collaborated with Wunderman Thompson to launch their latest campaign that raises awareness for missing children. The campaign features a website that went live on International Missing Children’s Day, 25th May. Illustrated portraits of missing children on the homepage children who go missing.
The website allows visitors to share the portraits of the featured children, all of whom have been missing for years. Every visit and shared missing person notice helps keep the faces visible and attracts new visitors. Child Focus also has support from a team of influencers who are mobilizing their followers to visit the website.
Every year Child Focus, the Belgian charity for missing and sexually exploited children, handles some 2,000 files on child disappearances. In 95% of cases, the child in question is found quickly, but a number of disappearances in Belgium remain unsolved. The general public sometimes writes off long-term cases as hopeless, but Child Focus, and the children’s loved ones, will never abandon hope of making a breakthrough.
French illustrator Nabil Nezzar converted the original pictures from the children’s missing persons notices into lifelike, hand-drawn portraits. The sight of the pictures fading and building provokes an emotional response to the website, which encourages people to think and share. Inevitably public attention for the website will decrease after a while but according to Wunderman Thompson Creative Director Kasper Janssens that is precisely the strength of the campaign, “Keep Hope Alive acts as a lasting motivator to keep hope for missing children alive. And if the day does come that the children fade entirely, website visitors will instead see a relevant message that will motivate them to rekindle that hope, however small it may seem at the time.”
The campaign runs across social media, and on digital billboards, bearing the line, “Don’t let missing children disappear” to remind people that as long as we keep thinking about these children, we keep hope alive. The children featured on the site are Liam Vanden Branden, Nathalie Geijsbregts, Théo Hayez, Antoine Plomteux, Ken Heyrman, Vincent Lamouris and Gevriye Cavas.