How We Got Started
Common Ground Society all began at preschool. Larkin and Jessica did a presentation on Down syndrome at their children’s preschool for World Down Syndrome Day in 2018.
Covered in the Press Democrat, news of the presentation quickly spread and many of Larkin’s teaching colleagues asked “Just Two Moms” (as they became known as) to come and present to their classes. They shifted their focus from just down syndrome to a multitude of diagnoses.
The requests quickly became overwhelming, so they decided to try their hand at all-school assemblies, and they were a hit! You can find the news article about their first presentation here.
CGS is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization founded in 2020 by "Just Two Moms" trying to make a difference in their community.
We are not diagnosis specific, anyone who has a loved one with any sort of unique need is welcome. There are people in our group with medical complexities, behaviors, speech delays, autism to rare and one of a kind diagnoses- over 115 different diagnoses in the group.
To share the stories of our lives to educate and empower our community to be more compassionate, accepting, and inclusive of people with disablities. CGS ensures that all families feel a sense of belonging through meaningful connections and local support.
We work hard to connect families with other families who understand the joys and struggles of this journey. We offer a variety of connection points through monthly meet ups.
- Elementary Age: Two different presentations, the first focuses on visible disabilities, the second on invisible disabilities and both challenge the audience to BE THE ONE™ to just say hi! be kind and caring of all humans. We have a third presentation that can be personalized. All presentations come with 20 posters for the school, bracelets and/or pencils reminding kids to BE THE ONE™
- Middle/High School: Two different presentations, one that shares the stories of our lives to create a connection to the students and those with disabilities. The second talks about different communication styles. Both teach the students how to interact with people they perceive as different from them.
- Educator Presentations: We present about our own mindset shift from educators who believed kids with learning differences belonged in another class to educators who advocate for inclusion for all and tips on how educators can do it themselves.
- Community Presentations: These presentations are fully custom made for each different audience. Polling our group, we get a wide range of experiences to draw from to help educate our community.
All of our presentations are customizable and interactive and we offer a safe place for questions and learning.