Back in 2018, food delivery company Deliveroo decided to turn its army of riders into moving missing person posters, putting the pictures and details of people missing in the local area on the side of its distinctive backpacks.
The initiative successfully found three people almost immediately, ending up with a total of five found loved ones by the end of the winter holidays. Now, the company has announced it's bringing the initiative back, and this year it's even bigger, spanning over 500 riders across more UK cities. It's hoping to reunite some families before Mother's Day.
Deliveroo riders in Birmingham, Brighton, Cardiff, London and Manchester will have information from the Missing People charity on their backpacks, and will be deployed close to where the person was last seen.
While a total of 500 riders will be wearing the posters, more than 30,000 will be asked to sign up to Missing People's Child Rescue texts, which let you know when there's a missing child in your area so you can keep an eye out.
Deliveroo has also created a virtual 'restaurant' in its app called Ride To Find, where you can donate to Missing People. The charity relies on public donations for its important work in helping find lost loved ones. Once someone has been missing for more than a week, the chances of finding them plummet – so getting their face seen in more places can only help.
Will Shu, CEO and Deliveroo’s first ever rider comments:
"Working with Missing People in 2018 is something we are genuinely proud of at Deliveroo. It also, very quickly, became clear that this partnership was something riders felt very passionate about being part of.
So, this year we are dedicated to working closer with our riders and providing more Missing People posters for them to wear.
I sincerely hope that partnering for a second time means we help to find more missing people as well as continue to raise awareness across the country."
Jo Youle, CEO at Missing People adds:
"We are delighted to be partnering with Deliveroo again to publicise the appeals for missing people from all around the UK. This campaign is such a brilliant way of raising awareness in local communities, both of the issues involved in missing, and the 186,000 people who go missing every year in the UK. That is one person every 90 seconds.
Missing People provides support for those who are missing, children and adults thinking of going missing and the families left behind, through our free helpline and our support services, and we also appeal for those who have disappeared.
Last year five people featured in the Ride to Find campaign were found, which was fantastic. We are hoping that we will be even more successful this time."
If you have any information on any of the people featured in Ride To Find, contact Missing People (you can be anonymous) by calling 116 000 or by emailing this address. Alternatively, call the police on the 101 non-emergency number. Please note: these numbers are not for enquiring what's happened to your "missing takeaway." You know someone will try.