Roma have launched a campaign that will see them use new player announcements to raise awareness for missing children.
Roma have become renowned for their innovative approach to social media, and they have now teamed up with non-profit organisations around the world to feature the faces and details of children who are currently missing whenever they break a new signing.
“The idea for the new transfer announcement initiative actually came from reading an article about the 25th anniversary of Soul Asylum’s ‘Runaway Train’ video, which famously highlighted actual cases – with photos and names – of children missing at the time,” Paul Rogers, head of the Giallorossi’s digital strategy, told his club’s official website.
“Taking inspiration from the use of milk cartons to display a photo of a missing child in America, the band’s video director Tony Kaye decided to use the medium of a pop video played on MTV and music channels globally to try and help find 36 missing children. In the end, I think they helped locate 21 children.
“There were four versions of the video made, two for the United States and one each for the UK and Australia.
“With Roma, we thought, we could try and do something similar but updated for the social media generation, which didn’t exist when Soul Asylum released their video.
“We want to use the viral nature of social media transfer announcements to help raise awareness for missing children.
“We have a massive social media following and our announcements generate incredible reach and awareness, all over the world, so we thought that at the exact moment when the world’s attention is on the club’s announcement, we could use our social media channels not for self-promotion but rather to help both the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and Telefono Azzurro find missing children.”
NCMEC chief John Clark added: “We were delighted to be contacted to work with AS Roma on this project. It’s an incredible initiative and a very innovative way to help tackle a universal issue.
“The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children assists with more than 25,000 missing children cases in the United States every year.
“If this initiative – using the power of social media – can raise awareness about not just the missing children featured, but also the work we do year-round, in terms of raising awareness and preventative measures, then it will have been a success.
“NCMEC sees first-hand the importance of not losing hope when it comes to finding a missing child.
“We know that children come home after days, years, and decades of being missing. We depend on organisations like AS Roma to spread awareness and use their voice for change.
“We could not be prouder of AS Roma for spreading awareness on a global scale.”
Ernesto Caffo, President of Telefono Azzuro, also thanked the Lupi for their efforts.
“We are thankful to AS Roma for creating this opportunity to shine a light on the serious issue of missing children, a cause that too often receives little coverage in mainstream media.
“This important initiative is an opportunity to raise public awareness of an issue that affects so many families throughout the world, and also for different countries to come together and attempt to find common solutions to the issue, across borders.
“The international community needs to push towards a target of wider collaboration on this issue, something we have been working on in Italy with co-operation between national institutions, law enforcement agencies and the legal system.”
The Lupi have already used the initiative to confirm deals Leonardo Spinazzola and Amadou Diawara.
Official: Leonardo Spinazzola is now a Roma player.
This summer #ASRoma will use each transfer announcement video on social media to help raise awareness about the search for missing children globally.
@MissingKids @telefonoazzurro pic.twitter.com/sy9GheDhsg
— AS Roma English (@ASRomaEN) June 30, 2019