Gwent Missing person project was set up in 2011 to explore the demand created by children and young people needing to be reported to the police as a missing person, and improve the way in which all agencies respond with the intention of improving outcomes, reducing duplication, gaps and waste in the process.
Data analysis was undertaken for the period August 2010-March 2011, the project found that during this eight month period 1276 reports were made to Gwent Police.
The project undertook work shops with front line workers and managers and concluded that there was confusion and differing priorities and responses from each agency in how we respond to a 'missing child'.
The Project identified a lack of accurate and consistent recording, risk assessment, strategy meetings, activity to trace the child and return interviews, despite formal protocols and guidance.
There are no performance indicators pertaining to missing children.
There is an acknowledgement within all agencies at all levels that's changes need to be made.
An independent evaluation coupled with positive outcomes and encouraging data trends demonstrating a reduction in repeat missing and absent episodes led us to consolidate the project into a full team.
Funding has been secured and agreed for a further five years taking us up to 2022 and bringing in more partner agencies to help put the pieces of the jigsaw together.