JIS News

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  • More than 600 Jamaicans have been trained by the Office of the Children’s Registry (OCR) in standard operating procedures that are necessary in the search and rescue of missing children.
  • It is part of the Ananda Alert System, designed to ensure the swift and safe recovery of children who go missing or are abducted.
  • Registrar of the OCR, Greig Smith, told JIS News that training sessions were conducted in six parishes and involved both theoretical and practical aspects of the search and rescue of a child.

More than 600 Jamaicans have been trained by the Office of the Children’s Registry (OCR) in standard operating procedures that are necessary in the search and rescue of missing children.

It is part of the Ananda Alert System, designed to ensure the swift and safe recovery of children who go missing or are abducted.

Registrar of the OCR, Greig Smith, told JIS News that training sessions were conducted in six parishes and involved both theoretical and practical aspects of the search and rescue of a child. He said that the training will be expanded to other parishes during the next financial year.

“The Office of the Children’s Registry will seek for this new calendar year to train another set of individuals within our country who can help us to return or boys and girls home safely,” Mr. Smith said.

He explained that the training sessions aim to establish and implement protocols between Government agencies, communities and parish level development groups, so as to improve the timely response of the community to find and locate children who are reported missing.

Participants at the sessions included: representatives of the Social Development Commission, Child Development Agency, Parish Councils, Parish Development Committees, Jamaica Fire Brigade, the National Centre for Youth Development, Jamaica Parenting Alliance, Citizen Associations, teachers, and nurses.

Meanwhile, Mr. Smith said an Ananda Alert Search and Rescue Protocol for Missing Children has been developed in an effort to improve the child search and rescue system and to assist personnel in State agencies, non-governmental organisations, faith based and community groups involved in the search to meet specific objectives set out in the document.

It was developed through financial support received from  the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), and with the assistance of the Jamaica Constabulary Force (Training Branch and the Caribbean Search Centre), the Jamaica Fire Brigade and members of civil society.

Mr. Smith said the document provides Ananda Alert volunteers with information regarding standard operating procedures that must be implemented before, during and after a search and rescue effort for a missing child.

The Registrar said the protocols are being distributed to Government agencies and departments, residential childcare facilities, schools, citizen associations, faith-based organisations and other private sector bodies.

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