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Port Orange Observer Thursday, Jan. 11, 2018 11 months ago

Volunteers look to help people build a foundation in life by first obtaining personal identification

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A pancake breakfast will be held to raise money for IDignity.
by: Nichole Osinski Community Editor

Without a government-issued ID, you can't open a bank account. You can't rent an apartment.

"You can't do anything without an ID," said Carolyn Fitzwilliam. "So to help somebody on that path and to climb out of an unfortunate situation is very gratifying."

Fitzwilliam and other volunteers with a nonprofit called IDignity help people get the documents, such as licenses, birth certificates or Social Security cards, they need, including if they recently moved to Florida. It costs approximately $250 and four hours of volunteer time to help one person. That adds up to about $50,000 per month.

"Some of them are homeless, some of them were maybe incarcerated, and they're about to get out," Fitzwilliam said. "What you really want to do is help people climb out of a situation, and you need to help them with the foundation to do that."

IDignity was started in 2008 by members of five downtown Orlando churches.

Fitzwilliam is a member of the Port Orange Presbyterian Church, which assists the non-profit in fundraising efforts and hosting IDignity events. She said the church started partnering with the organization in 2017 and has since held two events with plans for a third, helping 200 or more people each time.  

"They're so organized and have helped so many people," Fitzwilliam said. "We were really attracted to how much of an impact it can have."

Pancake breakfast

To help with the cost of applying for and obtaining the IDs, a pancake breakfast will be held on Saturday, Jan. 20, from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. at Applebee’s, 1390 Dunlawton Avenue, Port Orange. Tickets are $7 for a meal featuring pancakes, sausage, coffee and juice.

To order tickets, call Port Orange Presbyterian Church at 788-1111. To learn more about IDignity Volusia, visit volusia.idignity.org.

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