When Mary Anderson, LUM’s Director of Assistance, met with a client during the LUM ID Clinic drop-in hours recently, she could not have predicted that a week later she would be facilitating a family reunion between the client and his estranged mother. We will call this client, Michael.
Like many in our community who are taking that first step in a long journey back on track, Michael hit a road block – he needed an official ID. Michael was recently released from prison after being incarcerated for more than eight years. He was released without an ID, without a job, and without a home. Michael made several poor choices in the past which led to his imprisonment as well as destroying his relationship with his mother.
Today Michael is focused on becoming self-sufficient. Unfortunately Michael soon realized that you simply cannot do much without an official ID. His dilemma is that he needs a birth certificate to get an ID; and needs an ID to get his own birth certificate. This process is complex and became more so post-9/11. Although he is NOT able to get his own birth certificate on his own, his mother may. This is what led Mary and Michael to have a conversation about re-connecting with his mother who lives right here in town. It appeared to be the only option for Michael so he mustered the courage to call her. Michael’s mother quickly agreed to help Michael get his birth certificate by filling out the application and having it sent to her home address.
Michael is doing everything he can to keep his life moving forward. This vital service at LUM is getting him one step closer to being successful. And hopefully Michael and his mom have now begun to reestablish a positive relationship as well.