WHO WE ARE
The Common Ground Project FL is a non-profit organization working to engage, educate, and build grassroots power at the local level. We are invested in showing up for our communities on a year-round basis, building authentic relationships, elevating the voices of community validators, engaging key stakeholders, and maximizing our impact through relational organizing. We believe that it is critical to build consensus at the local level around a variety of kitchen table issues that have a broad local appeal within their respective communities.
WHAT WE DO
We employ a research-based approach to outreach, message development, and organizing, specifically in communities throughout Florida that have historically been overlooked and under-served. We believe that by investing in our neighbors, friends, and families and by truly understanding the unique needs of each and every community that we are in, we can truly build the multiracial working-class coalition we need to ultimately build progressive grassroots power at the local level.
The shortage of affordable housing has reached a crisis point in Florida. Millions of households in the Sunshine State are paying between 30 to 50% of their income on housing, leaving precious little for other necessities like costs related to healthcare, transportation, and utilities. Lower and middle income Floridians across the state are struggling with the cost of housing. Millions are locked into rentals that cost more than 30% of their household income, making saving to purchase a home of their own impossible. Too many face the difficult choice of paying rent or paying for costs related to healthcare and other necessities. By using the full amount of the Sadowski Housing Trust Fund to create additional affordable housing options in Florida, working families, seniors, veterans, and disabled residents of the Sunshine State will have a better opportunity to meet the rising costs of living and truly thrive.
When the world changed in March and the lives of everyday Floridians became threatened by economic upheaval on top of a debilitating health crisis, CGP’s digital expertise allowed us to remain nimble, and we quickly shifted to educating Floridians on all facets of the the pandemic, running dozens of digital ads to connect residents to resources, provide factual information to cut through falsehoods rapidly spreading online, and conducting crucial accountability work as the state’s unemployment system completely imploded. We hosted regular virtual events with legislators based in Tampa Bay, central Florida, and South Florida that hundreds of Floridians attended to receive answers and assistance with their struggles to receive the unemployment payments they needed and deserved.
CGP’s electoral Plan to Vote program began in earnest the following month, kicking off with a layered vote by mail recruitment campaign. The uncertainty around the pandemic made clear how important it was to ensure our voters were able to cast their ballots in the safest way possible. Our waves of digital ads, mailers, and chase texts targeted close to 150,000 registered Democrats who had yet to request a mail ballot. We came back to these voters before the Primary and General Elections with mobilization ads and texts. The next phase of this program widened to reach even more Floridians and focused on voter education, collecting digital Pledge to Vote cards, expanding our VBM recruitment ads and texting program, and hosting socially distanced events, like Rolls to the Polls and drive by community barbecues to get out the vote for the Primary and General Elections.
As the COVID-19 vaccine became available and community resources slowly increased, The Common Ground Project transitioned to a second phase to our initial Emergency Pandemic Relief Effort, to ensure that all Floridians, including our most vulnerable communities, receive the critical support needed to begin the long road to recovery and that these recovery efforts are safe and equitable. To that end, The Common Ground Project has developed a "15k FL Voices for Vaccines" Community Pledge and FL Vaccine Ambassador campaign. The campaign is a multi-pronged and comprehensive approach based on a deep understanding of the diverse needs of our state and local communities. The Common Ground Project will continue to utilize our grassroots infrastructure and community validator programs to facilitate the “15k Voices for Vaccines” campaign.