Lost and Found 2023 Wrap up

Wow, what a whirlwind 2023 has been – each year seems to outdo the last in sheer excitement and, let’s be honest, a little bit of chaos. But hey, that’s what makes it all memorable, right?

This year, the Liff App was the backstage hero for over 90 events, including some shiny new venues. We all know that losing your stuff at a festival is a buzzkill, but don’t worry, we at Liff Happens are gearing up even more to tackle this ever-growing challenge. Let’s dive into the Lost and Found saga of 2023 – it’s quite the story!

Lost and Found - up and to the right!

Since our debut in 2018, we’ve been the go-to guys for rescuing lost belongings at events and music festivals. Losing something can really put a damper on your festival vibe, and for event organizers, the lost and found process is just the start of a tricky journey. This year, with more events than ever, we also saw a spike in the number of lost and found items.

But here’s the cool part: 2023 was all about prevention! A whopping 80,000 items were registered on the Liff App to avoid the heartache of losing them. Our festival partners really stepped up their game to ensure you guys keep hold of your treasures.

We saw some super creative ideas out there! From the cutest dinosaur tags at Lost Lands to the super handy Tag-a-Kid wristbands at Lollapalooza, and let’s not forget those cool custom wallpapers that kept phones safe and sound. Lost and Found was in the limelight this year, and it’s clear that as the number of losses increases, more and more people are joining the movement to combat it.

Audience Awareness - building the market for their stuff...

We’ve been in the festival game for years, and let me tell you, the most mind-blowing part is still the stuff that never gets claimed. Seriously, folks, it’s waiting for you – just swing by and see if it’s yours! But we get it, in the midst of all the festival fun, it’s easy to forget.

That’s why we decided to shake things up. We’ve developed some nifty tools so that lost and found isn’t just a place, it’s a proactive service. In 2023, our partners were super active, sending out a ton of messages about lost items. And yes, a few of those messages were friendly nudges to encourage you to come and reclaim your belongings. Think of it as a little motivation to reunite you with your lost treasures!

Remember, next time you’re at a festival and can’t find your stuff, there’s a good chance we’ve got it. Don’t be shy, come and check out lost and found – your forgotten items might just be waiting for their homecoming!

While email remains our steadfast method for communication, this year we introduced a novel approach to reconnecting people with their lost items: postcards. This tangible form of communication added a personal touch to our lost and found notifications. In a world dominated by digital messages, receiving a postcard to alert you that one of your items is safe with us turned out to be both effective and heartening. These postcards, a refreshing change from the usual digital alerts, were well-received by our community. It’s a classic example of how a traditional method can still have a significant impact in our digital age, especially when it’s about something as important as retrieving your lost belongings. We’re all about innovative ways to enhance your experience and bring positive news right to your doorstep!

Return on Investment (your time)

Losing something, especially at an event and far from home, can really throw a wrench in your plans. Even a short separation from your belongings can lead to all sorts of hassles. But don’t sweat it – we’re on it! Our proactive tools are designed not just to increase the chances of returning your lost items, but also to get you reunited with them faster. This means less downtime at the event, more smiles all around, and fewer headaches down the line. We’re here to ensure that a lost item doesn’t turn into a lost moment of fun!

This year, a millions of dollars in belongings found their way back to their owners. The impact of these returns is profound, touching on everyday essentials – from the ID card needed to catch a flight, to the phone essential for driving directions, or the credit card required for a gas purchase. It’s in these moments, when missing items are recovered, that we truly see the significant effect on our daily lives. We’re thrilled to be a part of turning potential difficulties into moments of relief and joy

Turning failures into a positive

Let’s face it, not every lost and found story has a happy ending. There are items that never turn up, either forgotten or truly lost, and then there are those found items that sadly never make it back to their owners. It’s a tough part of what we do. But, we’re not just standing by – we’re actively developing exciting solutions to combat theft in the future.

In the meantime, we’re turning these less-than-ideal outcomes into a force for good. The Liff Happens team is dedicated to converting the value of unclaimed items into donations for worthy causes. This year, we’re thrilled to report that over $20,000 from these unclaimed treasures were donated to some amazing organizations. And yes, a significant portion supported dog-related charities – because, hey, we’re big fans of our furry friends and believe they deserve all the help they can get!

Luella's Lodge

Luella’s Lodge is a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting families grieving the loss of a child, offering holistic therapies and support groups in a tranquil environment in Oakwood, Illinois. They provide a range of activities including yoga, massage therapy, arts & crafts, and outdoor adventures like hiking and kayaking. Co-founded by Carrie Hay, a social worker, and Benjamin Hay, a craftsman and outdoorsman, the lodge plans to expand its facilities to host more families and activities. The team, including professionals from various backgrounds like psychology, finance, and conservation, focuses on creating a healing space for families to navigate their grief journey.

Classic Canines

Classic Canines, aiding Austin’s senior dogs since 2012, tackles the challenge of hundreds of senior dogs ending up in local shelters annually. Approximately 40% are lost, with only a fraction reunited with owners, leaving several hundred in need of new homes. About 20% require assistance overcoming neglect before being deemed “adoptable.” Classic Canines focuses on minimizing the traumatic shelter stay for older dogs through fostering and holistic care, guiding them on a journey toward their forever homes.

Layla’s Heart Ranch and Rescue

Layla’s Heart Ranch and Rescue is committed to a singular mission: contributing to a better world for all. They focus on saving the lives of at-risk animals through rescue, offering shelter, medical care, training, and rehabilitation. The ultimate aim is to secure loving forever homes for these animals.

Dogs Playing for Life

Dogs Playing for Life is a nonprofit organization dedicated to enhancing the lives of shelter dogs to increase their chances of being adopted. Through their innovative programs, they emphasize the importance of quality of life for all sheltered dogs, improving their experience via playgroups and individualized training. This approach has proved effective and efficient, helping nearly 300 shelters nationwide adopt it as a quality of life strategy. The organization believes in treating every animal as an individual, focusing on their physical, emotional, and behavioral needs. They have discovered that dogs’ behavior in barrier or on-leash situations is not always indicative of their social abilities, leading to a reduction in euthanasia rates and discriminatory practices against certain breeds. Their work in letting dogs play and socialize in group settings has resulted in happier, less stressed animals, ultimately making them more adoptable and safe for the people who care for them.

Midwest Working Dog Rescue

Midwest Working Dog Rescue focuses on rescuing and rehoming Belgian Malinois and Dutch Shepherds. They prioritize placing these dogs in environments suited to their high energy and working capabilities, including active homes, sport settings, or working roles. The organization evaluates each dog to determine the best fit and offers ongoing support to adopters through referrals to trainers and vets. Founded out of a love for the breed and recognizing the challenges faced by owners unprepared for these dogs’ needs, MWDR works to ensure each dog’s unique requirements are met, contributing to the welfare of these breeds one dog at a time.

 

Fox Lake Wrestling Club

The Fox Lake Wrestling Club is dedicated to introducing young people in the area to the sport of wrestling. They employ a positive teaching approach, focusing on helping students learn the basic moves and techniques of wrestling. This method not only imparts athletic skills but also aims to build self-confidence in each participant​​.