Two Mothers. Two Professionals.
Founders Martha Barragan and Maria Martinez first met in 2013. Martha worked for a company that provided Behavior services (ABA) and provided those services to Maria and her son as a Behavior Interventionist. Maria would commend Martha on the great progress that Maria's son was making and Martha would remind Maria not to count herself out. After all, caregiver participation was the key.
Maria was a key player with not only voicing opinions about what goals were priority, she would work just as hard to implement those goals outside of therapy sessions. Maria's son made great progress due to his mother's persistence and dedication. Her son was mainstreamed in kindergarten, no small feat for a child who started off non-verbal. Maria's dedication to her son and trying to understand him and what ABA could do for him pushed her to earn her Master's degree in ABA.
Martha's involvement with this case and others also moved her to pursue her Master's Degree in ABA and later, her BCBA Certification. While Martha was continuing her education, she began to notice her son exhibiting ASD symptoms and knew her child needed special interventions. Luckily, Martha's ABA knowledge allowed her to also intensely practice ABA strategies with her son just as she did at others' homes.
Years later, when Martha was no longer a BI providing behavior services for Maria and her son, Maria reached out to Martha and asked if she would go with her to speak about ABA at a parent group in the Coachella Valley. Martha agreed and the GANAS seed was planted. Parents went and were transparent, voiced their concerns, questions, and expressed their confusions. It was an ABA professional's dream to not have to guess what a parent was actually thinking. After that day is when Maria and Martha shared with each other that their dream was to start an organization that would provide quality behavior services and training to bridge the gap between behavior service professionals and the caregivers they serve.
The common caregiver story is of confusion and not understanding the ABA process. How could a caregiver pause to understand a process as a professional is attempting to complete a time-sensitive assessment? These two mothers wanted to explain. Martha and Maria. A story of two mothers successfully using ABA strategies. Maria began as a mother of a special needs child who later became a professional in the field of ABA and Martha began as a professional in the ABA field who later also became a mother of a special needs child. Both of them, mothers with GANAS.
Who We Are
Martha Barragán, MA, BCBA
Co-Founder and Executive Director
Martha Barragán grew up in the Coachella Valley in Southern California where she currently lives today. She is a wife and mother of 3 and has always been known for helping others in any way she can.
As an elementary school student and into high-school years, she frequently was alongside her mother, volunteering at different levels in the community such as the local food distribution. Martha’s sense of community drove her to seek an internship at a non-profit organization. She moved on to receive her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology. Later, she was introduced to the field of Applied Behavior Analysis, earned her Master's degree, and became a Board Certified Behavior Analyst in 2017. As she was attaining all of this knowledge, Martha served as a Board member at a local non-profit organization and on the School-Site Council where her son attended school.
Martha's son was regularly having problems with his behavior. Her son’s challenges made her educate herself to best advocate for him at school while implementing ABA strategies with him at home. She realized that other parents were not so lucky and she can make a difference to those caregivers and professionals who are exhaustingly seeking the answer to helping their child’s problem behaviors decrease at home and school.
Her personal mission is to show parents that the level of participation can impact the progress their child makes at home and school A degree is not required. Parents are the key!
Maria Martinez, MA
Co-Founder, President, and Director of Padres con GANAS
Maria Martinez is a mother of 3 and a mother of children with special needs. Beginning as a successful professional in the banking industry, Maria took a detour and began to seek out a degree in the field of Applied Behavior Analysis when she realized how much progress the ABA strategies were making in her son's life.
Progress, although slow and steady at times, is what Maria was working towards. So much that she could be confused for an in-home behavior interventionist. Her mentality was that ABA did not leave when the interventionist left their home. She absorbed everything she saw and consistently implemented it outside of sessions.
She eventually came to earn her Master's degree in Applied Behavior Analysis and as she was pursuing her degree, she volunteered at her son's school and recognized how the teachers needed support in the classroom setting. And caregivers needed support in their homes. She volunteered her time to help with both.
Maria's hope is that caregivers and school personnel become comfortable knowing, understanding, and implementing the ABA strategies because once understood, they can become very powerful tools that will impact the success of their child. From her own experience, Maria found that she was the key!