Training at Child Focus
While in Belgium, we visited our counterparts at Child Focus, a European benchmark organisation in the field of missing minors.
In Europe, Child Focus is the organisation with which we have the strongest links. Not only is its Chief Operating Officer, Miguel Garcia Torres, a member of our Foundation Board, but his action also serves as an example of what we want to achieve here in Switzerland.
During each of our visits, we are always impressed. by the recognition and support they have received from the Belgian authorities. For the past 20 years or so, they have worked very closely with local police forces, and all their actions are officially recognised by the Belgian government.
Child Focus also has a well-knit group of volunteers ready to react in case of emergency, in particular through the distribution of posters in the event of disappearances. And while its field of competence is broader than that of our foundation, the similarities between the countries in which our two organisations operate make it an excellent learning model.
During two complete training days, we were able to follow their team, which handles about 20 calls a day. "It was extremely rewarding to see how an organisation of this size can work," says Christoph Braunschweig, our hotline coordinator. Whether in their relations with the police or in their very structured way of dealing with each type of disappearance, they are doing what we want to do in Switzerland. It’s really an excellent example."