This week is National Missing Persons Week, a topic that hit very close to home for mix94.5‘s Clairsy, Matt & Kymba after Kymba’s friends started a five year, country-wide search for their brother Dan.
Loren O’Keeffe’s brother walked out of the family home on July 15th 2011, and never returned. Absolutely distraught but filled with determination, Loren quit her job and began a search known as the ‘Dan Come Home’ campaign that spread to all corners of the country.
Speaking to Clairsy, Matt & Kymba, Loren explained that a missing person can take over the entire life of their friends and family.
“It’s not just a police topic. It is something that involves so many different types of families and people in this country that really need a collective issue to address it,” she said.
“The impact on a long term search is enormous. I chose to quit my job when Dan went missing. It became my full time job running the campaign.”
Unfortunately, Loren’s search didn’t end with Dan being found alive but at the same time, his family now have answers after his remains were found on 21st March, 2016.
Over her five year hunt for Dan, Loren came to realise there were little resources available to help families of missing persons and so, she has now founded the Missing Persons Advocacy Network (MPAN), offering step –by-step information on how to search for your loved one.
“What we do is create awareness for missing Australians and we provide practical support for the families that are left behind,” she said.
“We need the media, we need the corporate sector involved, all levels of Government, and we are the ones to really push that and try and get everyone involved so that the families aren’t alone.”