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Project: Missing Person Form

Goals for using CiviCRM:

  • allow users to submit a missing person form
  • allow agencies to submit an unidentified person form (law enforcement and/or forensic investigator submit an unidentified form in the hopes that the public can help make an identification)
  • a search button to allow users to view missing persons and unidentified persons details

Custom Data

1. some of the fields that outpost wanted on their missing person form and unidentified person form:

First Name (standard data)
Last Name (standard data)
Date of Disappearance
Birth Date (standard data)
Age at disappearance
Weight (lbs)
Hair Color/ Style
Eye Color
Gender (standard data)
Distinguishing characteristics - scars, birthmarks
Medical conditions
Clothing and Jewelry
DNA sample available
Dental Records Available
Fingerprints available
Contact Name, Address, Phone, E-mail
Submitter Name, phone, E-mail
Submitter Relationship
Law enforcement agency
Case classification
Additional case details

From the above fields I could see that some field names were already included in the standard data in CiviCRM. View the standard data fields noted above. The fields that are not included in the CiviCRM standard data had to be created in custom data.

I created custom data for both: missing person form and unidentified person form

2.  At custom data page

  • Click new custom data group and enter group name: example outpost for hope data
  • Scroll down and click if appropriate:
  • used for - check individuals
  • weight
  • display style
  • pre-form help
  • post-form help
  • Is this custom data group active? (make sure it is checked)
  • Then click save at the bottom

3. window appears - Your Group outpost for hope data has been added. You can add custom fields to this group now.

  • click add custom fields
  • Fill out the following form:
  • Field label - example- date of disappearance
  • data and input field type: select what type of data required (alphanumeric, integer, number, money, note, date, yes or no, state, province, country or file)
  • for date of disappearance i chose date
  • the selector box to right of date, will automatically enter select date
  • enter the info - years prior to current date, and years after current date
  • Next to field type there is weight. If you already know the order of your form, make sure to number the weight accordingly or at least most of them otherwise you'll have to go back and do it later one by one.
  • Default value
  • Field Help, etc. 
  • Click save
  • after it is saved, new window appears listing your saved custom data field, below click new custom field to create remaining custom data fields.

other fields that outpost required on the missing person form
city/last known location (missing person)
city/location missing from (missing person)
contact person street address, phone, email
submitter name, phone, email

Rather than create additional custom data for the above fields, I used location types so that I could use CiviCRM's already existing additional address fields.

When you've created all custom data fields and created locations go to CiviCRM profile


1. other fields that outpost required on the missing person form

  • city/last known location (missing person)
  • city/location missing from (missing person)
  • contact person street address, phone, email
  • submitter name, phone, email

 note: rather than create additional custom data for the above fields, I used location types so that I could use CiviCRM's already existing additional address fields.

Go to Location types (home, work...) this is located on the same page as civiCRM profile and custom data


  • Click new location type
  • Enter Name - SubmitterLocation
  • vCard
  • Description - Person submitting form
  • Enabled? - check box
  • Default

 note: When creating a location type, the name needs to have location added to it without any spaces:

Example: SubmitterLocation

After locations were created, went to civiCRM profile and chose the missing person profile

  • Scroll to bottom and click new CiviCRM profile field
  • Next to field name select individual
  • Then select Location Name
  • In the third selector box select the appropriate location - Example SubmitterLocation
  • Field Label will automatically be filled in - Location Name (SubmitterLocation)
  • Fill out the rest of form as appropriate.
  • Required? Are users required to complete this field?
  • View only? If checked, users can view but not edit this field
  • Visibility* choose from selector box

Is this field hidden from other users ('User and User Admin Only'), or is it visible to others ('Public User Pages')? Select 'Public User Pages and Listings' to make the field searchable (in the Profile Search form). When visibility is 'Public User Pages and Listings', users can also click the field value when viewing a contact in order to locate other contacts with the same value(s) (i.e. other contacts who live in Poland).

  • Scroll down click active and save
  • Searchable
  • In selector?
  • Field Help
  • Weight
  • Active
  • Click save

After Location fields were added to missing person profile, I added/checked that the other fields needed in the missing person form were in the missing person profile.


Used CiviCRM Profile to create

  • a missing person form for users to fill out and submit
  • an unidentified person form for agencies to fill out and submit.

To create a profile

  • go to CiviCRM profile
  • click new CiviCRM profile
  • fill out form
  • enter profile name: Example: missing person form
  • check box - used for profile
  • scroll down and fill out where applicable
  • weight
  • Limit Listings to Group
  • Add Contacts to Group
  • Pre-form Help
  • Post-form Help
  • civiCRM profile active is checked then save
  • a yellow box will pop up with an add fields link
  • click add fields
  • to the right of Field Name select the type of civiCRM record: Individual, households, or organizations.
  • I chose individual for all my civiCRM records.

note: In the next selector box, the top half of the list are the standard civiCRM fields, and the bottom half are the custom fields that I created.

  • I selected the field that is first on my missing person form - First Name
  • Field Name - First Name
  • Required? Check box. Users are required to complete this field (First Name)
  • View only - if checked, users can view but not edit this field.
  • Visibility - I selected Public user Pages and listings
  • Searchable? Check box. I want to include this field in the profile's search form.
  • Selector - Is this field visible in the selector table displayed in profile searches? This setting applies only to fields with 'Public User Pages and Listings' visibility.
  • Field help
  • Weight - controls the order in which fields are displayed within a profile. Enter a positive or negative integer - lower numbers are displayed ahead of higher numbers.
  • Check active box
  • Click save

note: Always click save at the bottom or i'll have to create the profile field all over again.

  • clicked save, a new window will show First Name profile field
  • Underneath First Name field, clicked New CiviCRM profile field
  • and created a Last Name profile field.

Continued to add new CiviCRM profile fields until all profile fields for missing person form was complete.   Created second profile for unidentified person form.


When a user submits a missing person form or an agency submits an unidentified person form the forms would first be reviewed and sorted by an outpost staff volunteer (O.S.V.) The (O.S.V.) would sort the submissions by placing them in groups: approved, rejected or pending.

1. Manage groups:

  • Click to Manage Groups
  • Group Settings Page pops up
  • Enter Name of group - Example - Approved
  • Select: User and Admin only

(Select 'User and User Admin Only' if membership in this group is controlled by authorized CiviCRM users only. If you want to allow contacts to join and remove themselves from this group via the Registration and Account Profile forms, select 'Public User Pages'. If you also want to include group membership search and sharing in the Profile screens, select 'Public User Pages and Listings'.)

  • 5.Click continue
  • yellow box appears - the group approved has been saved
  • repeat steps 1-5 to create rejected and pending groups
  • If there are contacts in database already, you can search for them and view individuals who have been approved, rejected, or pending

2. To add individuals to a group

  • click the search button
  • displayed are all your contacts
  • choose the contact that you want to add to a group, and click view (on far right of that contact)
  • contact details appear
  • scroll to bottom to groups (just above notes)
  • click add your contact's name to a group (on far right)
  • select group
  • click ADD
  • Aucun

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