"Thank you for our ID cards"; "Thank you for giving us the right to vote"; "Thanks for my birth certificate." These are the sentences that mothers and children of the School of Peace of Yohannabad, in Lahore, Pakistan wrote on large sheets of paper to express the joy and gratitude of finally having an identity document.
They are Christian women and children, who did not exist for the Pakistani state and now the Community is helping to emerge from invisibility. This is a very common condition in the poorest minorities, which feeds inequalities and facilitates the abuses, of which women and children are especially victims.
Furthermore, without documents, children can only attend school up to the 9th grade and cannot obtain a diploma. Therefore they do not have the possibility of decent and regular work. While women, having no documents, are in fact deprived of any protection also with regard to family life.
Unfortunately, the late registration process is quite expensive and therefore inaccessible for mostly very poor families. For this reason the Lahore Community, drawing inspiration from the "Bravo!" program, active in Africa, it started a few months ago to accompany mothers and children in this regularization process, which will also allow them to access the anti-covid vaccination campaign.