On Friday, November 18th, Dilworth Paxson LLP was proud to be a part of a birth certificate clinic for the homeless and those at risk of becoming homeless. The clinic was located at Project H.O.M.E. and hosted by The Homeless Advocacy Project (HAP) DELVACCA (Delaware Valley Chapter of the Association of Corporate Counsel) and PECO/Exelon. Six Dilworth attorneys - Gino Benedetti, Matthew Whitehorn, Matt Azoulay, Catherine Pappas, Fenita Moore, and Michael Gallagher - processed the majority of the non-Pennsylvania application requests.
For those without birth certificates, living without proper documentation makes it almost impossible to receive medical assistance, apply for housing or take advantage of many public programs. This one document can make a difficult situation a little bit easier. The clinic allowed many of the homeless individuals and those at risk for homelessness the ability to meet with an attorney and request a birth certificate for themselves and their minor children free of charge.
The clinic was an overwhelming success, and the 29 total volunteers (18 of which were lawyers) helped prepare a total of 209 birth certificate applications in two and a half hours. Our attorneys were delighted to supply their talents and time along with those from PECO/Exelon, Lincoln Financial Group, Independence Blue Cross, Merck, Pep Boys and paralegals/assistants from Aetna and Cigna. Amy Tarr, PECO/Exelon Assistant General Counsel and Pro Bono East Coordinator, said “The fact that Philadelphia-area corporate law departments successfully served this need, with support on out-of-state applications from Dilworth Paxson, is a reflection of the contributions to our community that we can accomplish by working together in a short amount of time. The Dilworth Paxson attorneys volunteered with professionalism, pride and enthusiasm, truly exemplified teamwork and made a terrific contribution to our community.”
Dilworth attorneys hard at work. Pictured above (from left to right) Matt Whitehorn, Fenita Moore, Gino Benedetti, Catherine Pappas and Michael Gallagher.