Following Jesus Christ’s example, Common Ground Community, Inc., is committed to making a difference in Cedar Grove through compassionate outreach, building relationships, and acceptance of all people. We serve and build lasting relationships with our neighbors in Cedar Grove who may be hungry or lacking in other basic needs. We are primarily volunteer driven with volunteers from many churches and businesses from all over the Shreveport-Bossier-Benton region.
Although some of our volunteers have been working in the Cedar Grove community for almost 20 years, Common Ground was incorporated in 2004. Common Ground started as an outreach program of Grace Community United Methodist Church. Mr. Brian was mission’s chairperson at Grace and came to Faith United Methodist Church to see how the two churches could partner. Soon the Kitchen Angels were helping with a community meal and after school tutoring at Faith.
In 2002, a group including Tania Lang and Brian Hunter went to Glide Memorial United Methodist Church in San Francisco to learn how Grace could implement some of Glide’s outreach ministries. They were inspired and decided to put some of what they heard and learned to work in Cedar Grove. The more they came to the neighborhood and build relationships, they began to fall in love with Cedar Grove.
The property across the street from Faith came up for sale, and at a time when their lives when folks might have been buying vacation homes or lake house, the group decided to buy what we call the Bright House now, the yellow house next to it and the community garden area. The community meal, after school program, food pantry and clothes closet that had been at Faith, moved across the street to the Bright House.
In June 2010, a year after Faith church was closed, the Louisiana Methodist Conference donated the 25,000 square foot building to Common Ground. Through the generosity of several local foundations and hours of work by dedicated volunteers, we completed the first phase of our renovations in 2011 and we moved all the Bright House ministries into the larger space. The kitchen was completely remodeled, We now have a "campus" with the Bright House 1, Bright House 2, our two “JJ Houses,” an Education Building, a renovated greenhouse and more!
Our Thursday night activities continue. After a chapel service, we have community meal, open our food market and clothes closet. Our youth programs have expanded. We partner with Atkins Elementary and 2nd and 3rd graders come for after-school tutoring focusing on reading skills. We have educational and enrichment activities for 30+ middle and high school aged boys. We continue our free summer day camp where children from the community come spend time learning, creating and being in a safe caring environment. We have partnered with BPCC and are holding classes for adults.
New things are happening all the time! We invite you to drop by one day and see for yourself what God is doing in our Cedar Grove community.