SALT LAKE CITY — The Other Side Academy in Salt Lake City is dedicated to helping those with a criminal past or addiction issues have a better future.
The Academy is currently in the process of working with Salt Lake City to build a tiny home village that will focus on affordable housing for people who are currently homeless.
Tuesday they had a training session with officers from the South Salt Lake Police Department, cops who may have actually arrested some of those who are now part of the Academy.
The average student has been arrested roughly two dozen times and spent decades living a criminal lifestyle, typically fueled by drugs and or alcohol.
The students educated officers on how they’ve rebuilt their lives and are now working on being productive members of society.
“In fact, many of our students owe their lives to officers, frankly holding them accountable, at the right time,” said Joseph Grenny, Founder and Chairman of the Board of The Other Side Academy. “And helping them recognize that their life wasn’t working so that they would make a decision to come to a place like this.”
“It gives us positive reinforcement that, people that we’re arresting, that need to be arrested, they are involved in criminal activity,” said SSLPD spokesperson Danielle Croyle. “But how they can turn their lives around, how they can work toward something better for them.”
Grenny says The Other Side Academy continues to be self-sufficient and not dependent on government funding.
They accept donations and contributions but also make money from their businesses which now include an award-winning moving company, two clothing boutiques, a construction company and they’ll soon start a storage business.
The businesses are all run by the students, the overwhelming majority of whom are either recovering addicts and/or former jail or prison inmates.
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