Stars of Stage and Screen Shine Light on America's Missing Children at AMBER Ready Back-to-School Safety Weekend in Times Square and Help Secure Thousands of New Enrollments in State-of-the-Art Child Safety Program

Grammy Winner Robin Thicke, Ciara, Cicely Tyson, Raven Symone, Sean Kingston, Doug E. Fresh, Trey Songz, Day 26, BRUTHA, ABC's Robin Roberts and the City of New York Join the Fight to Raise Awareness of Issue of Child Abduction and the Need for Greater Prevention Efforts

Aug 21, 2009, 13:18 ET from AMBER Ready Foundation

NEW YORK, Aug. 21 /PRNewswire/ -- The crossroads of the world -- Times Square -- served as the backdrop for a star-studded, fun-filled weekend designed to reduce the nearly 1 million children who will be classified as missing or abducted this year. AMBER Ready and the AMBER Ready Foundation presented three days of education and entertainment with the support of top entertainers, and launched the nation's first wireless child protection service and community predator deterrent program.

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The AMBER Ready program puts the power to save missing children in the palm of parents' hands. Using a new, state-of-the-art cell phone technology program that facilitates the quick delivery of information to police, medical and other emergency services in the event that a child goes missing, the service reduces the normal time for the information dissemination process from hours to minutes. The program has been endorsed by the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association (FLEOA) and National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives (NOBLE).

Highlights of the weekend included:

  • Approximately 50 guests attended press conference for the national launch of AMBER Ready Program and the AMBER Ready Foundation Back-to-School Child Safety Community Forum.
  • Reginald H. Bowman, President, City Wide Council of Presidents of the New York City Housing Authorities' Residents, announced an historic $1.5 million investment in the AMBER Ready program on behalf of 30,000 families living in NYC's public housing.
  • Moving speeches were delivered by Kai D. Patterson, CEO, Chairman, President and Founder, AMBER Ready; Frank Del Vecchio, Senior Vice President, AMBER Ready Inc.; Lucita Petro-Nixon, Mother of Abducted and Murdered Child, Chanel Petro-Nixon & Missing Child Activist; Reginald H. Bowman, President, City-Wide Council of Presidents, New York City Housing Authority; Robin Roberts, host of ABC's Good Morning America; and Cicely Tyson EMMY award-winning actress, The Cicely L. Tyson Performing & Fine Arts Community School, East Orange, N.J.
  • Saturday and Sunday daytime activities included family fun, virtual games with celebrities and professional athletes such as Allan Houston, strolling entertainment, food and prizes.
  • Standing room only performances were held Saturday and Sunday evening. Hosted by Raven Symone, Doug E. Fresh and J.D. Williams (HBO's The Wire), weekend activities featured evening performances by GRAMMY winner Robin Thicke, Ciara, Trey Songz, Sean Kingston, Day 26, BRUTHA, Toby Love, Tiffany Giardina, Poison with J.J. and Erly, and Crystal Garrett.
  • All events were simulcast on the Times Square Jumbo Tron.

More than 800,000 children under the age of 18 are reported missing in the U.S. every year. Minorities, often the least informed about what do when children are abducted, equaled 65% of the total non-family abductions between the ages of 13-17, with African American children making up 42% of that group and Hispanics 23%. In New York State alone, more than 20,000 children under the age of 18 are reported missing every year.

The weekend activities were produced by The Terrie Williams Agency/Studio9 Global -- the agency of record for AMBER Ready that will be engaged in a year long communication education campaign to raise awareness of the issue and the AMBER Ready Program.

About AMBER Ready

The AMBER Ready Program is the ( Nation's First Wireless Child Protection Service & Community Predator Deterrent Initiative, and a major technological advance in the effort to find missing or abducted children. Research has shown that missing or abducted children not recovered in the first four hours, likely never will be. The program enables parents and guardians to store their children's photo, description and other valuable information in a profile in their wireless multimedia phones. If the unfortunate situation ever occurs, an Amber Ready subscriber can immediately transfer information to their local law enforcement agency, media stations, airports, and the AMBER Alert network - saving valuable time. Kai D. Patterson is the president and founder of AMBER Ready, Inc. Families can enroll in AMBER Ready by calling 1-866-60-AMBER. Child Safety in the Palm of Your Hand. Are you AMBER Ready?

AMBER Ready is not AMBER ALERT, but is a tool used to enhance the issuance of an AMBER ALERT and to reduce the time for law enforcement agencies to disseminate an AMBER ALERT from hours to minutes.

SOURCE AMBER Ready Foundation