ALEXANDRIA, Va. – In Montana, 77 children between the ages of 5 and 19 are listed on the Montana Department of Justice’s missing persons website.
Now a new national partnership has launched an innovative, digital strategy using a popular song to help find those kids.
The Montana DOJ Missing Persons Clearinghouse works closely with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and other state groups to help find children who have been unlawfully taken out of or brought into Montana.
Friday, the national missing children’s group partnered with advertising agency M/H VCCP to announce its new effort, a music video featuring interactive technology to track the missing children, according to a press release.
It’s called Runaway Train 25 and it reinterprets the award-winning Soul Asylum song “Runaway Train” with musical artists Jamie N Commons and Skylar Grey featuring Gallant.
The release comes ahead of National Missing Children’s Day on Saturday.
Runaway Train 25 uses geolocation technology to turn the music video content into a search tool to find missing children. The video automatically updates itself with the profiles of missing children from the national missing children’s database based on a viewer’s location, which people can share across Twitter and other social media platforms.
People can now visit runawaytrain25.com to view the video. The site asks visitors to share the music video on Twitter and other social media channels using #MissingKids and #RunawayTrain25.
The site aims to make it easier to find and report missing kids, such as pausing on the image of a child and reporting where they’ve been seen. In addition, it allows users to create and share a custom video for a missing loved one or community member.
Digital billboards and transit screens nationwide will support the initiative using geo-targeted dynamic feeds to display photos of missing children by location. The donated ads will also drive users online to view and share the video.
In the 1990s, the original “Runaway Train” video by Soul Asylum, NCMEC, and director Tony Kaye featured 36 missing kids. After it aired on MTV, 21 were recovered.