Skip to main content

Do you have a missing or sexually exploited child? Were you missing or sexually abused as a child? 

We're here to help. 

Overview

Team HOPE is a group of peer support volunteers who have lived experience with missing and exploited children’s issues. We know the pain, fear, frustration, and loneliness that comes with being or having a missing or sexually exploited child.  We are adult survivors who were missing or sexually abused as children. We are family members of children who were sexually exploited or missing.  With this knowledge and experience, we are dedicated to offering compassionate peer support, empathy, understanding, kindness, and friendship to people who experienced being or having a missing or sexually exploited child. You are not alone; we are here to provide hope and walk the journey with you.

Since its inception in 1998, Team HOPE has trained more than 500 volunteers and reached out to more than 102,000 people to offer our compassionate peer support.

Get Support

Who We Help

The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children's Team HOPE is here to assist families of missing or exploited children, as well as adult survivors of  certain types of sexual abuse, abduction, or other missing cases.

We work specifically with individuals who have been, or have had a child who:

  • Was involved in suspected or confirmed child sex trafficking
  • Was involved in an abduction or other missing case type (family abduction, run away, non-family abduction, etc.)
  • Is a victim of child sexual abuse material (sexually explicit images, videos, etc)
  • Has experienced online enticement (was solicited online for sexual images or acts) 
  • Was sexually abused by a non-family member 

How We Help

Our peer-support model pairs you with a volunteer who has experienced a similar situation to yours. Team HOPE’s trained volunteers can:

  • -Help people in crisis with a missing, sexually exploited, or recovered child as they handle the day-to-day issues of coping and/or searching for their child.
  • -Help provide peer and emotional support, compassion, coping tools and empowerment to people who have or were missing, sexually exploited, and recovered or located children.
  • -Help instill courage, determination, and hope to those we support.
  • -Help alleviate the feelings of isolation soften resulting from fear and frustration.

All Team HOPE support is phone-based and offered free of charge.

Call 866-305-HOPE (4673) to talk to a Team HOPE member.

Give Support- Become a Team HOPE Volunteer

Team HOPE volunteers are the heart and soul of Team HOPE. They have demonstrated an incredible ability to turn personal tragedies into vital support for other families. We have volunteers in almost every state and from all walks of life.  Volunteers are screened and attend in-depth trainings before they are matched with a family to support. 

Note: You must complete the Personal Info section betfore the next section will become available. This form is thorough in order to guarantee the best placement and relationships for survivors and supporting peers. If you have questions regarding the form, please call 866-305-HOPE (4673).

IF YOUR CHILD IS OR HAS BEEN MISSING, PLEASE ANSWER THE FOLLOWING QUESTIONS:

Please list two professional references for us to contact, other than relatives and friends, who can attest to your character, skill and dependability.

Professional Reference 1:
Professional Reference 2:

confirmation

Thank you for your interest in volunteering with Team HOPE! We will followup with you soon.

More

WATCH: Team HOPE is a group of ordinary people who one day were forced to live every parent’s nightmare. They know the pain, fear, frustration and loneliness that comes with having a missing or sexually exploited child. With this knowledge and experience, they offer peer support to families of missing and sexually exploited children.

A Child is Missing: Providing Support for Families of Missing Children
A Family Resource Guide on International Parental Kidnapping
Captured on Film: Survivors of Child Sex Abuse Imagery Are Stuck in a Unique Cycle of Trauma
Coping with Child Sexual Abuse Material (CSAM) Exposure for Families
What About Me? Coping with the Abduction of a Brother or Sister
When Your Child is Missing: A Family Survival Guide
You're Not Alone: The Journey from Abduction to Empowerment

Survivor & Family Support

For All Survivors & Families

If you or someone else are in immediate crisis, please call 911 or your local police.
If you want to report a potential suicide threat, please visit the Suicide Prevention Lifeline.

Emotional Support & Referrals

NCMEC’s masters-level trained advocates are available to survivors, families, foster families, caregivers, and others by phone or email to assist in finding the right community-based resources to assist with healing. You are encouraged to email gethelp@ncmec.org to see if we can support you and/or your family. 

Team HOPE is a network of volunteers who have personally experienced the trauma of having or being a missing or exploited child. With this firsthand knowledge of the multitude of emotions people experience, these volunteers provide peer support to adult family members of missing or exploited children, as well as adults who were missing or exploited as children. 

Help Locating Legal Aid

NCMEC helps families who are navigating the legal system. NCMEC’s Office of Legal Counsel provides legal technical assistance to parents, guardians, survivors and families. We offer resources, help describe available legal remedies for resolving cases and answer important questions for families about the criminal and civil court process.

If your child was abducted across borders or has been impacted by child sexual exploitation, NCMEC may be able to provide referrals to an experienced attorney (including pro bono or reduced-fee referrals) who can help with the legal issues relating to the situation. In some cases, survivors of child sexual abuse material, child sex trafficking or related exploitation are entitled to financial compensation and working with an experienced attorney is critical to exercising your rights.

Please email gethelp@ncmec.org for information about attorney referrals for families and survivors impacted by a missing child or dealing with child sexual exploitation.

For Those With a Missing Child

Missing Child Case Management

When a child goes missing, NCMEC case managers play a vital role in collecting leads, adding value to tips, and coordinating information for the involved parties (families, law enforcement, etc). If you are a parent or legal guardian who has already reported your missing child to local law enforcement and would like a NCMEC case manager involved with your child's missing case, please call 1-800-THE-LOST.

Reunification Assistance

NCMEC is available to help families prepare for their child’s needs when children initially reunite with their families days or months later. Families in financial need may qualify for transportation at low or no cost to them once their children are recovered.

Please email gethelp@ncmec.org to see if we are able to assist your family in reunification.

For Those Overcoming Exploitation

Reporting Sexual Exploitation

If you want to make a report of child sexual exploitation, you can use NCMEC’s CyberTipline. Specially trained analysts will process that report and make it available to the appropriate law enforcement agency.
 

Removing Sexual Images of a Child Online

Requests to remove explicit content can be made by individuals directly to hosting platforms and websites. Full instructions on how to do this are regularly updated at MissingKids.org/TakeitDown. You can also report explicit images of a child online to the CyberTipline.

Those making a report to NCMEC's CyberTipline have the option to work 1:1 with a CyberTipline team member to work through removing the image and finding additional support. If you would like to work with a team member to remove an image, please email gethelp@ncmec.org .

Resource Documents

Coping with Child Sexual Abuse Material Exposure
Resources for Child Sexual Exploitation Survivors & Their Families
Reconnecting with Your Child
Resources for Empowering Families
You Are Not Alone: Support for Child Sexual Abuse Material Survivors & Their Families
Child Sex Trafficking in Amerca: A Guide for Parents & Guardians
When Your Child is Missing...
You are Not Alone: The Journey from Abduction to Empowerment