The National Missing Persons Helpline has changed its name to Missing People in a bid to emphasise that it provides other services as well as the helpline.
John McCann, the uncle of missing Madeleine McCann, was due to be on hand at today’s launch, which coincides with international missing children’s day.
The charity’s chief executive Paul Tuohy said the new name would enable people to understand that the charity offered a range of services.
“The previous name implied that our service was limited to a single helpline, however we are now a fully-fledged charity that offers a wide range of active services,” he said.
“In addition to the charity’s core services, finding the missing, supporting young runaways and those left behind, we are also becoming a centre of knowledge and policy influence.”
The charity will also start a quarterly direct mail campaign aimed at tracking down missing people. The mailout is expected to reach 2.5m homes after an initial run of about 500,000 letters. The first pack will highlight the story of Carmel Fenech, who went missing aged 16 in 1998.
According to the charity, an average of 10 missing people are found each week as a result of its work.