This past Thursday, T and I were helping run one of the most important events that the Masons coordinate. It wasn’t a fundraiser, or a fancy ball, instead, we gave our services away for free.
The CHiP program, or Child Identification Program, sometimes called Masonichip, is a service that Masons help provide, that parents hope they never have to use. CHiP helps create a packet for your child, containing current photographs, a short video, fingerprints, a DNA sample, a scent pad (for scent dogs), and dental impressions. The idea is that in the event a child goes missing, a parent who has participated in the CHiP program simply has to give the packet to police, which will hopefully greatly assist in finding the lost child. Despite what many conspiracy theorists want you to believe, the CHiP program does not microchip or mark your child in anyway, nor is any of the information kept on a list. Nothing, in fact is saved as far as the Masons are concerned, and all of the information goes home with the parent or guardian. Since they grow so fast, it is recommended that a new CHiP packet is made each year in order to have the most up to date information. Often CHiP events are held at county or state fairs, the one that T and I helped out at was at my hospital’s safety fair.
The CHiP program is 100% funded by Masons, and it is Masons and their families that help run the events themselves. The CHiP program actually works directly with the Center for Missing and Exploited Children. I’m not going to go terribly into too much detail about this topic, because I run the risk of repeating myself. If you would like to know more about the CHiP program and similar programs funded and ran by Masons, including Take25, you can check out last year’s post here. The national CHiP website can be found here. Although often, an individual state will have its own separate website. If Masons do not have a CHiP program in your state or jurisdiction, there is lots of information on the national site about making that happen.I highly encourage you to do so if it is not available in your state.
I’m keeping it short and sweet for this week. I feel that this is a very important program that certainly warrants passing the word along from year to year. If you would like to get involved with a CHiP program in your state, or would like to help start a CHiP program in your state, contact your Grand Lodge.If you have kids and find yourself at an event where a CHiP program is running, I would highly encourage you to have your children participate. It is wonderful for both the welfare of your children, and helps support Masonry at the same time.
That’s all for now; hope you have a wonderful week!