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Davis Journal

CommonSpirit Holy Cross Hospitals gives $50,000 grant to Red Barn Academy

Oct 12, 2023 03:47PM ● By Becky Ginos

FARMINGTON—Men at Red Barn Academy are there striving to reinvent their lives from substance abuse and crime. Last week, CommonSpirit Health, which owns and operates Holy Cross Hospitals throughout the state, presented a $50,000 Health Equity Grant to the facility to help move that mission along.

“Health and wellness is not just about disease,” said Father Tema Nnamezie, Market Director of Mission Integration, CommonSpirit Holy Cross Hospitals. “It’s also emotional well being. Our 148 year ministry in Utah is filled with hope and high ideals. We’re committed to health equity.”

CommonSpirit Health acquired five Steward Health hospitals in May and restored the name Holy Cross. CommonSpirit Holy Cross Hospital – Davis in Layton is one of the five.

“We don’t answer to shareholders,” said Kevin Jenkins, Market CEO, CommonSpirit Holy Cross Hospitals. “That gives us the opportunity to reinvest back into the community. It’s a faith based hospital. We provide healthcare one person at a time.”

Substance abuse is a problem in the community, he said. “We see it coming into the ER. We can help but we can’t solve the problem. Some people might turn their backs but we don’t want to do this.”

“I’ve been in trouble my entire life with the law,” said Shane Goodbar, Red Barn Academy leader and addiction survivor. “By the time I was in my 30s I was in jail for a DUI. When I got out  10 days later I royally messed up my life. I was sentenced to 15 to life and I had to tell my wife that I was back in jail. It was heartbreaking.”

Goodbar said he was completely broken. “I was done. I hated who I was. I was desperate and a social worker told me about Red Barn. I didn’t think they’d accept a guy like me. I had no trust in myself.”

Someone from the academy came and interviewed him at the jail, he said. “Fortunately he thought I was sincere and ready to change.”

Goodbar came before the judge who sentenced him to Red Barn. “When I got here I had no idea what this was,” he said. “We didn’t talk about feelings or my parents or my life. We hold each other accountable and make them walk the line. That will change you or you will sink. I’m the best version of myself now.”

“I spent most of my life in addiction and the criminal justice system,” said Nicholas Andersen, Red Barn Academy leader and addiction survivor. “I manipulated my way through drug court. I had a little boy and I thought I could change for my son but I couldn’t look inside, I just blamed others.”

Andersen said he used the love and kindness from his parents and took advantage of that. “My father finally told me not to come around anymore and my mom was crying. That was the best thing my father did was to change the locks on the door.”

Andersen was also sentenced to Red Barn. “I started my journey in 2019,” he said. “I begin to have feelings of hope, but it can be dangerous to hope. I saw guys walking around who looked happy and healthy.”

He was assigned to cook and clean and take care of the animals on the farm. “Then I started in the moving company and that saved my life,” said Andersen. “I learned about brotherhood and that we were all on the same journey. They said, ‘Today you get to have a good attitude.’ I had a bad attitude and I was given the opportunity to change that.”

Eventually he was in charge of moving and started working with other men at the academy. “It was great to make it happen for somebody else and see them become successful,” said Andersen. “The whole person can change all we have to do is change everything.”