CEDAR CITY – It’s not often a community sees people in recovery and law enforcement come together but that’s exactly what’s happening in Cedar City.
A new nonprofit organization, Hooked on Life, has partnered with local law enforcement to host a softball game Saturday night between police officers and those in recovery to try and raise money to help others recover from drugs and alcohol.
The event is for the whole family and includes food, bounce houses, face painting, a dunk tank and live entertainment by the band Spillbeedog.
All of the proceeds that are raised from the event will go toward the “Hooked on Life” scholarship fund that has been set up to help fund treatment for others in the community. It will also help pay for different necessities individuals may need while in the treatment facility or after they get out.
“The money will go to help people get into treatment but also there are people in treatment already who don’t have support from family and they need things like hygiene supplies or maybe tennis shoes for hiking,” Kelsey Sanders, founder of the Hooked on Life organization, said. “There are a lot of things that the money will be used but it will go to helping people in treatment get clean and sober.”
The idea for the scholarship was started by Richard Bauer who, after retiring as a probation officer last year, decided he wanted to continue to serve those he had spent his life helping.
“We have people in this community losing their lives to heroin,” Bauer said. “It’s a community problem. It’s a society problem and it’s a big deal. So, after working 30 years with these people I wanted to do something, but I wanted to come at it from a different standpoint, which is where I came up with the idea to do the law enforcement against those in recovery softball tournament.”
So often those who have lived a life involved in drugs and alcohol will have a negative perception of law enforcement, Bauer is hoping this event will help change that.
“I want them to know that law enforcement and probation officers aren’t always the enemy,” he said. “They’re not just there to put the handcuffs on and take you to jail but can also be your biggest ally and supporter. They want these people to succeed and I want this event to not only help raise money for the scholarship fund but also start to help build those relationships.”
The nonprofit group also recently held an online fundraiser to raise $1,500. They met their goal, plus $35. All of the money raised Saturday will be added to that pot.
Sanders said she plans to make this an annual event and hopes it will continue to grow so that eventually they can hold tournament games between several teams.
If you plan to go:
Place – Field at the Hills, 2090 West Royal Hunte Dr.
Day and Time – Saturday at 6 p.m.
Cost – Game is free, other activities will have a small fee
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