The International Organization for Migration (and its Missing Migrants Project) does not directly conduct tracing or searches for missing migrants.

However, if you know someone who has gone missing while migrating or as a migrant in another country, the information below may be helpful to you. Please select the region where you think your family member went missing from the menu. The organizations listed are civil society and non-governmental actors. There may also be relevant government bodies that may be helpful as well – please note that national authorities (and in particular, the police) generally have the jurisdiction to search for missing people. You can also send us an email to MissingMigrants@iom.int and we may be able to further advise who to contact. 

Global

Restoring Family Links Network of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement

  • The Restoring Family Links Network of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement helps families who have lost contact with their loved ones as a result of conflicts, natural disasters and migration globally through the Family Links Website
  • In order to obtain support from members of the network in the search for your relative, you are asked to go to the Restoring Family Links (RFL) service in the country where you live. It doesn’t matter if you’re not in your home country. 
  • The service is free of charge and the information collected is completely confidential.

Refunite

  • Anyone can register on Refunite’s Global Data Base and look for their missing person among the people who are also registered in the database 
  • The service is available in 12 languages 
  • People can also contact Refunite for help/advice in their searches, although they have limited capacity to support people with their search beyond the database
  • This service is completely free of charge and the data collected is confidential.
Americas

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA-MEXICO BORDER

Civil society organizations providing support to families of missing migrants

EAAF

  • The Argentine Forensic Anthropology Team (Equipo Argentino de Antropología Forense, EAAF) is a non-governmental organization that applies forensic sciences to the investigation of human rights violations and humanitarian problems worldwide.
  • The EAAF’s Border Project supports families across Central America and Mexico with missing migrant relatives who lost their lives while transiting through Mexico or on the US-Mexico border. The project has established forensic databanks in countries or communities of origin of missing migrants to facilitate the search and identification of missing migrants.
  • If you know someone who has gone missing on their migration journey from Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua to Mexico and the United States, as well as from Mexico to the United States, please fill out this form. A staff member from the Border Project will get in touch with you to advise you on your case.
    • If you are in El Salvador, you can get directly in touch with the national forensic databank and fill out a missing migrant form here.
    • If you are in Honduras, you can get directly in touch with the national forensic databank and fill out a missing migrant form here.
  • These services are completely free of charge for family members, and the data collected is confidential.

Colibrí Center for Human Rights

  • The Colibrí Center for Human Rights helps families in their search for loved ones who have disappeared while crossing the US-Mexico border. The Center also has a Family Network where families of missing migrants can connect and provide mutual support and solidarity to other families going through the same experience.
  • Colibrí is based in Arizona, USA, and can help families whose relatives were last seen crossing the border through this area.
  • If your loved one disappeared in California, New Mexico or Texas, or in Mexico, please note that Colibrí has limited ability to help you find your loved one. However, they can include you in their Family Network so that you can connect with other families going through the same experience.
  • To request Colibrí’s help in finding someone who disappeared six or more months ago while crossing the US-Mexico border, specifically in Arizona, please fill out a missing migrant form. A staff member from Colibrí will get in touch with you to advise you on your case.
  • This service is completely free of charge for family members, and the data collected is confidential.
  • If you wish to report someone who disappeared in recent days or weeks, please see Colibrí’s “Active Search” Guide. The guide has information by location on search and rescue organizations that may be able to support locating your loved one, as well as information on how to contact detention centres in case your family member is in immigration detention or federal custody.

South Texas Human Rights Center

  • The South Texas Human Rights Center is a community-based organization that aims to strengthen the capacity of families of missing migrants to locate their loved ones. They are based in Falfurrias, Texas.
  • To request the Center’s support in finding someone who disappeared while crossing the US-Mexico border, specifically in South Texas, please send an email to MPSTHRC@gmail.com.
  • You can also call the Center’s Missing Migrant Hotline at + 1 361-325-2555. During the call, a staff member will gather information about your missing loved one and their last known whereabouts in order to connect you to the proper resources available to you to support you during the search.
  • Their service is completely free of charge and the data collected is confidential.

Caminos Oaxaca

  • Caminos Oaxaca supports families from Oaxaca, Mexico in the search for loved ones who went missing crossing the US-Mexico border. 
  • Through a network of contacts with organizations in Mexico and the United States, they can help search for your missing relative in prisons, immigration detention centres or hospitals. 
  • They can also provide guidance, advice and support to guide you during the tracing process. 
  • The search and accompaniment services are completely free of charge, and the data collected is confidential.
  • You may get in touch with Caminos Oaxaca through the following email address: caminosoaxaca@gmail.com or filling out this form.

Online / social media resources that could be useful for the search

No More Deaths search guides

CENTRAL AMERICA

EAAF

  • The Argentine Forensic Anthropology Team (Equipo Argentino de Antropología Forense, EAAF) is a non-governmental organization that applies forensic sciences to the investigation of human rights violations and humanitarian problems worldwide.
  • The EAAF’s Border Project supports families across Central America and Mexico with missing migrant relatives who lost their lives while transiting through Mexico or on the US-Mexico border. The project has established forensic databanks in countries or communities of origin of missing migrants to facilitate the search and identification of missing migrants.
  • If you know someone who has gone missing on their migration journey from Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua to Mexico and the United States, as well as from Mexico to the United States, please fill out this form. A staff member from the Border Project will get in touch with you to advise you on your case.
    • If you are in El Salvador, you can get directly in touch with the national forensic databank and fill out a missing migrant form here.
    • If you are in Honduras, you can get directly in touch with the national forensic databank and fill out a missing migrant form here.
  • These services are completely free of charge and voluntary for family members.

Fundación para la Justicia y el Estado Democrático de Derecho (FJEDD)

  • The Foundation supports families of missing migrants who may have gone missing in Mexico to locate their missing family members. The Foundation works with local and regional associations of families of missing migrants in Central America and provides families with technical assistance and legal advice during the tracing process. 
  • You can get in touch with the Foundation via email: justiciayestadodederecho@gmail.com

Servicio Jesuita a Migrantes (SJM)

  • The SJM’s Missing Migrants Project supports families of missing migrants to search for loved ones who went missing while migrating in Mexico. 
  • The SJM can help search for your relative among the network of migrant shelters throughout Mexico, as well as in hospitals, prisons and detention centres. The service is not oriented towards forensic search and identification. 
  • If you think your loved one went missing while transiting through Mexico, you can get in touch with the SJM via the email addresses: comunicacion@sjmmexico.org or desaparecidos@sjmmexico.org
  • A staff member from SJM will get in touch with you to advise you on your case.
  • This service is completely free of charge for family members, and the data collected is confidential.

 

Association of families of missing migrants

El Salvador

Comité de Familiares de Migrantes fallecidos y desaparecidos (COFAMIDE)

  • If you live in El Salvador and have lost a loved one during migration to Mexico and the United States, you may get in touch with COFAMIDE, an association of families who are going through the same experience. 
  • COFAMIDE will provide support to help you locate your relatives. They can help with the search in shelters, hospitals, prisons and detention centres, and can provide guidance and support with the forensic identification of remains. They will also be able to advise you on how to engage with authorities during the search. 
  • You can get in touch with COFAMIDE via email: cofamide.elsalvador@yahoo.com and via their Facebook page

 

Honduras

Comité de Familiares de Migrantes Desaparecidos del Progreso, Honduras (COFAMIPRO)

  • If you live in El Progreso, Honduras, and have lost a loved one during migration to Mexico and the United States, you may get in touch with COFAMIPRO, an association of families from El Progreso who have missing family members.
  • Members of COFAMIPRO can help you navigate the search process, providing guidance and resources. It may also help to share your experience with other families who can provide support and solidarity. 
  • You can get in touch with COFAMIPRO via email: cofamipro@yahoo.com and via their Facebook page

Comité de Familiares de Migrantes Desaparecidos del Centro de Honduras (COFAMICENH)

  • COFAMICENH’s members are all families of migrants from the region of Centro in Honduras who have gone missing during their journey to Mexico and the US. 
  • Members of COFAMICENH may be able to help you navigate the search process, providing guidance and resources. It may also help to share your experience with other families who can provide support and solidarity. 
  • You can get in touch with COFAMICENH via their Facebook page

 

Guatemala

Asociación de Familiares de Migrantes Desaparecidos de Guatemala (AFAMIDEG)

  • AFAMIDEG is formed by families of migrants from Guatemala who have gone missing during their journey to Mexico and the US. 
  • Members of AFAMIDEG may be able to help you navigate the search process, providing guidance and resources. It may also help to share your experience with other families who can provide support and solidarity. 
  • You can get in touch with AFAMIDEG via their Facebook page

 

SOUTH AMERICA

1800migrante
 

  • 1800migrante is an Ecuadorian law firm providing advice and support to Ecuadorian families who have lost a loved one on their migration journey to Mexico or the US.
  • If you know someone who has gone missing on their migration journey from Ecuador to Mexico and the United States, please email info@1800migrante.com.A staff member from 1800migrante will get in touch with you to advise you on your case.
Africa

NORTHERN AFRICA

Morroco

Association Marocaine des Droits Humains (AMDH) – Section Nador

  • AMDH Nador is the local branch of the Moroccan Association for Human Rights, one of Morocco’s most important nongovernmental organizations, in Nador province, Morocco. 
  • AMDH Nador advocates for the rights of migrants, and monitors deaths and disappearances of people in transit and attempting the crossing to Spain that occur in the Nador area.
  • They run a Facebook page, Migrants dead or missing in Morocco, where they post information about people who have died or gone missing with the aim of providing clear information to families, and as a tool to help families share information about their relative in social media. 
  • If you know someone who has gone missing on their migration journey near Nador or during the crossing from Nador to Spain, AMDH Nador may be able to help you with your search. 
  • You can get in touch with AMDH Nador via their Facebook page.

Caminando Fronteras

  • Caminando Fronteras is a non-governmental human rights organisation that focuses on the protection of migrants’ rights. The organisation runs an emergency hotline for migrants who are in distress at sea. On receiving calls from at-risk migrants, the organisation alerts the maritime authorities of Spain, Morocco and Algeria to mobilize rescue support. 
  • Caminando Fronteras supports families of missing migrants to search for their relatives through their network of migrant community groups and through social media. They also support families in their search and identification processes through official channels, helping them in their interactions with authorities. 
  • If you know someone who has gone missing on their migration journey from North and West Africa to Spain, Caminando Fronteras may be able to help you with your search.
  • You can get in touch with Caminando Fronteras via email (info@caminandofronteras.org) via WhatsApp (+212 694-869982 ).

 

Tunisia

Association La Terre pour Tous

  • La Terre pour Tous is formed by families of migrants from Tunisia who have gone missing during their journey across the Mediterranean to Europe.
  • Members of La Terre pour Tous may be able to help you navigate the search process, providing guidance and resources. It may also help to share your experience with other families who can provide support and solidarity.
  • You can get in touch with La Terre pour Tous via email (association_laterrepourtout@yahoo.com) their Facebook page.

Forum Tunisien pour les Droits Economiques et Sociaux (FTDES)

  • The Tunisian Forum on Economic and Social Rights is a non-governmental organization defending human rights, including the rights of migrants, in Tunisia. Their work on migration includes documenting deaths and disappearances of Tunisian migrants who attempt the Mediterranean crossing to Europe, and assisting their families in their search for information. 
  • If you know someone who has gone missing on their migration journey from Tunisia to Europe, FTDES may be able to help you with your search.
  • You can get in touch with FTDES via the contact form in their website.

Carovane Migranti

  • Carovane Migranti is an Italian association supporting families of missing migrants on both sides of the Mediterranean to advocate for their rights and supporting them in their search for information on the whereabouts of their relatives.
  • Since 2014, they organize annual caravans of families of missing migrants from North Africa to Italy as a "vehicle" of requests from family members who are searching for relatives missing during the Mediterranean crossing to Italy. 
  • If you know someone who has gone missing on their migration journey to Italy, Carovane Migranti might be able to help you. You can get in touch with them via the contact form in their website.

 

Algeria

Kouceila Zerguine Avocats

  • Kouceila Zerguine is an Algerian lawyer providing support to families of missing migrants in Algeria. He might be able to help you with your search or provide advice on how to navigate the search process.
  • You can get in touch with Mr. Zerguine via email (zerguine-kouceila@hotmail.fr).

Carovane Migranti

  • Carovane Migranti is an Italian association supporting families of missing migrants on both sides of the Mediterranean to advocate for their rights and supporting them in their search for information on the whereabouts of their relatives.
  • Since 2014, they organize annual caravans of families of missing migrants from North Africa to Italy as a "vehicle" of requests from family members who are searching for relatives missing during the Mediterranean crossing to Italy.
  • If you know someone who has gone missing on their migration journey to Italy, Carovane Migranti might be able to help you. You can get in touch with them via the contact form in their website.

 

WESTERN AFRICA

Senegal

Senegalese Red Cross

  • The Senegalese Red Cross’Families of Missing Migrants project supports families of affected by the disappearance of relatives following migration. 
  • The main objective of the project is to strengthen the capacity of families to cope with the difficulties caused by the disappearance of their loved ones.
  • The programme has four components: restoring family ties, psychosocial support, socio-economic support and institutional mobilization. 
  • You may get in touch with the Senegalese Red Cross at + 221 33 823 39 92 and via their website (https://crs.rc-app.com/). 

 

Niger

Alarm Phone Sahara

  • Alarm Phone Sahara (APS) is a cooperation project between associations, groups and individuals in the Sahel-Saharan region advocating for the protection of migrant rights.
  • Alarm Phone Sahara helps to rescue migrants in distress on desert routes in the Agadez region of Niger. People in distress or their families can call a toll-free telephone number, and Alarm Phone Sahara will mobilize rescue support.
  • The emergency numbers are +227 89983339 or +227 84446534

 

SOUTHERN AFRICA

ICRC/RCRC Trace the Face Southern Africa

Europe/Mediterranean

ICRC/RCRC: Trace the Face 

  • This service is in addition to ICRC’s Restoring Family Links Program
  • It allows people who are looking for a missing relative to post a photo of themselves, which can either be viewed by the public or only by the tracing services of the ICRC and National Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies
  • If someone recognizes your picture, or if the Trace the Face network identifies a potential match, a National Red Cross or Red Crescent Society or an ICRC delegation will get in touch with you.
  • This service is completely free of charge for family members, and the data collected is confidential.

Boats4People

  • Boats 4 People (B4P) is an international coalition established in 2011 to advocate for the rights of migrants at sea.
  • The Boats4People coalition have produced a guide for families who believe a loved one may have perished crossing the Mediterranean to Italy, and for the individuals or associations assisting them in their search.
  • The guide is available as a PDF and as an interactive online tool. It provides information on the steps that should be taken to report the disappearance of a loved one to Italian authorities and other organizations that can support families with the search.
  • If you know someone who has gone missing on their migration journey to Italy, this guide may be helpful.

Alarm Phone

  • Alarm Phone is a volunteer network running an emergency hotline for people in distress at sea. The Alarm Phone is not a rescue number, but an alarm number to mobilize rescue operations.
  • If your loved one went missing while crossing the Mediterranean from North Africa to Europe, or while crossing the Atlantic from the coast of West and North Africa to Spain, you can contact Alarm Phone to report your case.

La Cimade 

  • La Cimade is a French non-governmental organization assisting migrants, including refugees and asylum-seekers, in accessing their rights.
  • As part of the Boats4People coalition, La Cimade supports families of missing migrants by providing information on the official search, identification and repatriation procedures and the steps that families need to take to search for their relatives who went missing in the Central Mediterranean.
  • This work is being expanded to include other routes: the maritime route from the Comoros archipelago across the Indian Ocean to the French department of Mayotte, and the French-Italian border.
  • You can find out more about how to contact your regional delegation in their website: https://www.lacimade.org/etre-aide-par-la-cimade/

Missing Children Europe

  • This is a federation of organization of national organizations that work against child disappearances in 32 countries in Europe.
  • Approximately 5% of the cases that they responded to in 2017 were related to children who went missing during migration, including cases of unaccompanied children
  • This organizations respond to calls to the telephone hotline: 116 000 
  • Children and families calling the telephone hotline receive free and immediate emotional, psychological, social, legal and administrative support.
  • The telephone hotline and the NGOs that run the hotline are not there to replace the police, nor are they part of the police. However, they can assist in cases when people may not speak the local language and/or may not know the telephone numbers of local authorities or other relevant agencies.
  • This service is completely free of charge.

Safe Passage UK

  • This organization helps unaccompanied child migrants access their rights in Europe, including to reunite with their families.
  • The legal team works with families living in the UK who are trying to reunite with relatives that are asylum seekers in Europe so that they don’t have to take dangerous journeys to reach them.
  • Phone: +44 20 8017 2937, E-mail: info@safepassage.org.uk
Asia

India

Centre for Migration Studies (CIMS)

  • NGO based in Kerala, India, with the main objective of safeguarding the rights of migrant workers and assisting families in Kerala to track down their missing relatives abroad
  • They feature cases of missing migrant workers from Kerala on the TV show Pravasalokam telecasted in Kairali to engage diaspora networks and track down other sources of information about the missing
  • Contact: Tel: +91 484 2623588/+91 90610 30104, E-mail: cimskerala@gmail.com

   

Nepal

Pravasi Nepali Coordination Committee (PNCC)

  • Non-profit, non-political, non-governmental social organization dedicated to protecting Nepali migrant workers’ rights abroad and to providing support to Nepali migrants (and their families) in distressful situations
  • PNCC provides assistance to the families of migrant workers who are missing in GCC countries and Malaysia as well as in the journey of migration.  
  • Contact: Tel: +977- 01- 5706102/5705354/5705402, Email: info@pncc.org.np, Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pravasinepali

 

Philippines

Centre for Migrant Advocacy (CMA)

 

Bangladesh

Ovibashi Karmi Unnayan Program (OKUP)

  • Grassroots migrants' organization in Bangladesh, which the primary focus to reduce migrant workers' risks and vulnerabilities related to forced labour, human trafficking and slavery.
  • OKUP is committed to upholding their rights, protection, and dignity in migration cycle through project interventions and evidence-based advocacy.
  • Contact for emergency situations: +01842773300, +8801819 224308
  • General Contract: Tel: +88 02 755 3737
  • Email: okup.ent@gmail.com