The first step in landing a job, getting a driver’s license, renting an apartment or establishing eligibility for social assistance is having the proper personal identification. Most basic governmental programs require three forms of ID.
Many of our clients have never applied for or been issued necessary IDs, and others have lost them while living in homeless shelters, during street robberies or while in prison.
Working with volunteers from the Order of Malta, Franciscan Charities staffer Dan Ellis has designed a program to help those clients, determining what forms of ID are needed and obtainable, providing and filling out the required paperwork, navigating the bureaucracies and paying the required fees.
Since 2013 Franciscan Charities has helped hundreds of people obtain original birth certificates, social security cards and county and state photo ID cards. And during the administration of former mayor Cory Booker, the city of Newark hired our organization to assist prison releasees in obtaining IDs.
In 2021, Franciscan Charities plans on helping 500 of our neighbors obtain individual IDs.