IGLYO (The International LGBTQI Youth & Student Organisation), Missing Children Europe, and the University of Portsmouth are thrilled to announce the launch of a two-year project titled LGBTIQ+ Missing Children. This initiative aims to explore and address the experiences of LGBTIQ+ young people, aged 18 to 24, who ‘went missing’ as children, and to positively impact those currently at risk.

In this project, “going missing” includes homelessness, running away, being forced to leave home, living with other relatives or friends, receiving social services or foster care, abduction, trafficking, seeking asylum, or any situation where a child is separated from their home environment.

Episodes of ‘going missing’ often signal deeper issues and can lead to long-term marginalisation and exclusion, significantly impacting LGBTIQ+ children and youth. Despite these severe implications, there is a notable lack of research in Europe on the intersection of being LGBTIQ+ and experiencing “going missing”. This project aims to fill that gap.

From May 2024 to March 2026, the LGBTIQ+ Missing Children project will first collect data through surveys and interviews, then create a report and organise training for professionals on how to adapt their services to the specific needs of LGBTIQ+ youth and children. An online resource hub for LGBTIQ+ youth and children at risk of going missing will be created, and an awareness campaign will be launched. The project will conclude with publishing policy recommendations, which will be presented at a symposium in the European Parliament.

To ensure the integration of perspectives from those with firsthand experience and various stakeholders, the project will be guided by two advisory boards: a Youth Board of LGBTIQ+ young people with firsthand experience of homelessness or forced displacement, and a Board of Professionals with experts from various fields.

For more information on the LGBTIQ+ Missing Children project, please visit: https://www.iglyo.org/news/lgbtiq-missing-children

Press enquiries

IGLYO’s Communications & Network Manager Jeremy Gobin (He/him) at jeremy@iglyo.org.


Founded in 1984 and based in Brussels, IGLYO — The International LGBTQI Youth & Student Organisation is the largest member-based network in the world dedicated to LGBTQI youth and their rights. Today, they gather over 115 Member Organisations in 40 Council of Europe countries, as well as countless friends and partners worldwide. Their work focuses on the protection, empowerment, and freedom of LGBTQI young people between 18-30 years old.

About Missing Children Europe

Missing Children Europe represents 32 Non-Governmental Organisations active in 27 countries across Europe for the prevention, protection and support of missing and sexually exploited children and their families. We provide the link between research, policies, and organisations on the ground to protect children from any form of violence, abuse, or neglect that is caused by or results from them going missing. Missing Children Europe coordinates the network of 116000 hotlines for missing children, and the network of cross border family mediators and facilitates coordination of cases that involve cross-border issues, ensuring that vulnerable children receive the help they need no matter where they are in Europe.

About the University of Portsmouth

The University of Portsmouth hosts The Centre for the Study of Missing Persons, provides a clear focus for research into missing persons, for knowledge transfer and for educational provision, to academics, to professionals in the missing persons community and to relatives of missing people.