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Anyone who has lost contact with a family member as a result of armed conflicts, natural or industrial disasters, humanitarian crisis or because of migration may turn to the Red Cross to try to find their loved ones. The Red Cross/Red Crescent Movement, all over the world, will do their utmost to find those missing persons and restore family links.

In this context, the Belgian Red Cross can help you:

  • search for your missing loved ones,
  • exchange messages with family in a context where usual communications means are strongly affected or interrupted;
  • reunite with loved ones who were found by the Red Cross and who can benefit from family reunification visa.

The Belgian Red Cross can also:

  • help clarify the fate of a loved one vanished in the course of a former conflict (up until the Second World War);
  • send you a certificate of detention (provided that you were visited in prison by the International Committee of the Red Cross - ICRC);
  • prevent the breaking of family links by giving you the right information according to the situation described.

Each request will be handled on a case by case basis and in accordance with acceptance criteria that may vary depending on the country, the nature of the loss of contact, whether or not an armed conflict takes place in the involved area…

Two websites are dedicated to missing persons

The Red Cross Movement also has two websites dedicated to finding missing persons.

One of them addresses specific cases of individuals who went missing during their migration route to and in Europe. From now on, do not hesitate to visit this website that displays the pictures of those who are looking for a loved one.

The other website is dedicated to conflicts or recent disasters. Through this website, people who have lost contact can meet and exchange contact information. Currently, the countries covered are: Bosnia, Croatia, the Philippines, Kosovo, Nepal and Somalia.

Feel free to contact our Tracing / Restoring Family Links Service

If your request fits our criteria, a member of the Service will receive you and will assist you in your file. If you do not speak French, Dutch or English, we can plan and arrange the presence of an interpreter. You may as well come accompanied of a trusted person who will translate.

During our meeting, you will be explained our work in a more detailed way. We will fill in a form that we will send to the Red Cross / Red Crescent National Society (or ICRC) of the country in which you think your family is. In the field, our colleagues will carry on the appropriate steps to restore the link between you and the person you are looking for.
As soon as we have information about your file, we will contact you. Our ability to trace people depends both on the information you can provide and on local circumstances (human resources, logistics,...) including the security situation of the concerned country.

Unfortunately we cannot comment on the duration of the research that can sometimes be very long.

All our services are free and each case is treated confidentially.

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