Highland News Leader

Local Masons offer parents opportunity for child ID kit

Highland Masonic Lodge 583 and Marine Lodge 355 will sponsor an event where parents can get help putting together a free information kit that can be used if their child ever goes missing.

The Illinois Masons Child Identification Program (IL CHIP) event will run from 9 .m. to noon on Saturday, May 16 at Pal’s Preschool & Day Care, 170 Woodcrest Drive in Highland.

How it works

The Freemasons of Illinois hold and fund the entire cost of identification workshops for families all around the state of Illinois. These are called ILCHIP events. They’re sponsored by local Masonic Lodges and held at neighborhood functions or community schools.

The Masons put together everything parents need to help the authorities find their lost child. It’s the most comprehensive program of its kind — and it is free of charge.

Best of all, it only takes 10-minutes and supplies parents with a complete child identification package that can be taken home or carried with the family on vacation. The information — most of which is contained on a CD — is compact and totally private. The IL CHIP program keeps only the parental permission form.

What parents get

Below are materials used for IL CHIP events. These materials are available for parents to preview or event hosts to reproduce for an upcoming event.

▪ Color photo that records image and height and is digitized on a convenient CD that can be easily circulated by police to the media and distributed across the State within an hour via Illinois’ Amber Alert Program.

▪ DNA sample taken through a saliva cheek swab is the latest tool in the scientific arsenal to make positive ID’s of lost children.

▪ Fingerprints are the oldest form of positive identification since they are unique to every person.

▪ Recorded Interview captures on the same CD as the picture the appearance, speech patterns, personal characteristics, and mannerisms for easy media distribution.