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Office of Justice Programs Announces South Carolina’s Hanna Lapina as Winner of the National Missing Children’s Day 2024 Poster Contest

WASHINGTON, DC — Administrator Liz Ryan of the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) within the Office of Justice Programs, announced Hanna Lapina, a 5th grader from Chesnee, South Carolina, as the 2024 poster contest winner during the 41st annual commemoration of National Missing Children’s Day in Washington, DC.

"Every year, the remarkable talent and insight of these children bring awareness and hope to the efforts of all involved in reuniting missing children with their families," said OJJDP Administrator Liz Ryan. "The poster contest brings a child’s perspective to the serious conversation of missing children and safety, under the theme, 'Bringing Our Missing Children Home.'" This year, over 236 schools across 30 states participated in the contest, submitting more than 1,300 poster entries.

The contest provides a platform for schools, law enforcement, and child advocates to engage in discussions on child safety with youth and their parents.

Hanna Lapina currently lives in South Carolina and is a student at Cooley Springs-Fingerville Elementary school. Miss Lapina’s artwork adeptly captures the notion that the puzzle is not complete until the missing piece—the child—is back home. "Those who help bring them back change the whole picture," said Miss Lapina. "They are heroes."

The Office of Justice Programs’ Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention leads the nation in observing Missing Children’s Day, which was first proclaimed by President Ronald Reagan in 1983 in memory of 6-year-old Etan Patz, who was abducted while walking to his bus stop in Manhattan on May 25, 1979. This annual observance honors his memory and children who are still missing.

View the poster gallery here. For more information about the OJJDP grant programs and initiatives, visit OJJDP's website, ojjdp.ojp.gov.

About the Office of Justice Programs

The Office of Justice Programs provides federal leadership, grants, training, technical assistance, and other resources to improve the nation's capacity to prevent and reduce crime; advance equity and fairness in the administration of justice; assist victims; and uphold the rule of law. More information about OJP and its program offices – the Bureau of Justice Assistance, Bureau of Justice Statistics, National Institute of Justice, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, Office for Victims of Crime and SMART Office – can be found at www.ojp.gov.

About the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention

The Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) is celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (JJDP) Act. Signed into law on September 7, 1974, the Act established OJJDP to support local and state efforts to prevent delinquency and improve juvenile justice systems. Through its divisions, OJJDP sponsors research, program, and training initiatives; develops priorities and goals and sets policies to guide federal juvenile justice issues; disseminates information about juvenile justice issues; and awards funds to states to support local programming.


OFFICE: ojjdp.ojp.gov
CONTACT: OJP Media at [email protected]

Date Published: May 22, 2024