DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) — The Dayton Fellowship Club is reaching out to those struggling with addiction this holiday season, letting them know there’s hope and hosting several holiday events.
The nonprofit is made up of people in recovery. They say part of their journey is giving back and helping others, which is why they hold a few events every year at this time.
“We bring light into the darkness of addiction,” says Alan Walder, one of the club’s founding members and in charge of community outreach.
In recovery going on 33 years, Walder and the other members are getting ready for their 16th annual gift giveaway, expecting 300 to 400 kids.
“It’s a good, self-fulfillment type of organization because we’re encouraging a drug-free lifestyle. And it’s a family illness–this addiction. So when we can help the kids, the mothers, the parents–and the kids light up. And it also gives them a sense of community to say, hey the people in the community do care about you,” says Walder.
On Saturday, December 17 from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m., people can drive up and get a gift for their children. They’re limiting it to four children per car, and they must be present to get a gift.
On Christmas Day from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., the club is inviting people to share a home-cooked meal and celebrate the holiday. They’re expecting 100 to 200 people.
“A lot of times, places are closed up, and we want to make sure people have somewhere to eat, and let them know we’re dealing hope,” states Walder.
While the holidays are a busy time of year, they realize these free events are sometimes just what somebody needs, and it’s what they need too in their own journey of recovery.
“I have to keep extending and helping other people find freedom from addiction,” says Walder. “You never know who’s going to need help.”
The Dayton Fellowship Club will also be open New Year’s Eve so people have a drug-free place to come celebrate and safely ring in the New Year.
The Dayton Fellowship Club is a nonprofit and accepts donations to help them put on events.