DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) — The Dayton Fellowship Club is hosting its first Coffee with a Cop event. 

They say they’ve been doing a series of engagements with law enforcement with the purpose of helping each group understand the other better. 

“It’s a lot of things that law enforcement doesn’t know about people in long term recovery—that we have changed our lives around . A lot of things that people in recovery and the community don’t know is that law enforcement do stuff in the community that help people with substance abuse and mental health,” says Alan Walder, the Community Outreach Coordinator for the Dayton Fellowship Club.

Walder has been in recovery since 1990.

“The misconception is people in recovery, they never get better. Now, if nobody gave me a chance—I’ve been doing this for 33 years. So, I got a chance, and one of the things I remember is the person on probation helped me,” states Walder.

A founding member of the Dayton Fellowship Club, he looks for ways to help others in their journey of recovery and says jail is not always the answer.

The Dayton Fellowship Club, along with Expressions of Life, is hosting Coffee with a Cop. It will be held Tuesday, April 25 from noon until 3 p.m. at the Dayton Fellowship Club at 1124 Germantown Street. There will be a few speakers, and they’ll also be giving away bus passes, personal care items, and food for people who attend. 

The goal is to help break down misconceptions of police and vice versa—helping people in recovery get the resources they need.  

“We don’t want to wait for the next major event to see what we can do,” says Walder. “If we understand each other then we can better help our community as a whole.”

The event is free and open to the public.