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November 2013

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AMECO Honors Pina Arcamone with 2013 Joan Taavon Award

AMECO honors Pina Arcamone, Director General of The Missing Children’s Network, as the recipient of the 2013 Joan Taavon Award.

The Joan Taavon award recognizes employees and volunteers of AMECO member organizations who exhibit extraordinary passion and commitment to the field of missing and exploited children.  Named in memory of Joan Taavon, who served as President of Maryland’s Missing and Exploited Children’s Association (MECA), this year’s award was presented at AMECO’s Annual Membership Meeting in October 2013.

Since 1994, Pina has served The Missing Children’s Network, which provides front line services to families who are searching for their missing children.  The organization also offers comprehensive educational and prevention programs designed especially for children, parents and professionals. Visit www.enfant-retourquebec.ca to learn more about these programs.

Under Pina’s leadership, The Missing Children’s Network:

  • Provides personal safely programs for children, parents and professionals. Every year, the organization delivers 400 personal safety workshops reaching over 10,000 students. In 2012, they also distributed 10,512 safety documents, free of charge to a number of schools, childcare facilities, police stations, and community organizations.
  • Places the faces of missing children somewhere they have never been before in Canada – on a postage stamp.  This program sends photographs of missing children into the hands of millions of people world-wide and hopefully into the hands of someone who might recognize a missing child.
  • Is developing a Family Resource Intervention Team to provide ongoing crisis management to families of missing children.

Gail Chartier, Office Administrator at The Missing Children’s Network, nominated Pina for the award. “Her passion and dedication to the cause goes beyond the bounds of her role as Director General,” Gail said. “Having worked for the Missing Children’s Network since 1994, Ms. Arcamone has had to deal with the ups and downs of a non-profit organization and does so with grace and compassion. Not only does she make herself available for the families that we work with on a day to day basis, but also for the staff, our volunteers, law enforcement, media, our donors and sponsors. Everything she does, she does 150% and with the Network and the cause at heart. After 19 years of working with our missing children’s families they have actually become extensions of her own family and she treats them with the same respect and dignity.”

AMECO congratulates Pina on this much deserved recognition. AMECO’s Executive Director Wendy Jolley-Kabi states, “It is an honor to recognize Pina’s dedication to missing children and her compassion for searching families. Pina represents the many local heroes in our field who dedicate their lives to bringing missing children home. Our families and communities are safer because of her efforts.”

AMECO is a network of trusted nonprofit missing and exploited children’s organizations that assist in the prevention, recovery and reintegration of missing children and the prevention of child exploitation. Their members assist searching families and law enforcement in the recovery of missing children, assist missing and exploited children and their families to gain access to services, and  provide prevention and education services to help prevent children from becoming missing or exploited.