West Virginia was created around the issue of freedom for enslaved peoples during the Civil War. Its very identity is anchored in the idea that all should be free, and echoed in the state motto: “Montani Semper Liberi” [mountaineers are always free]. The name “Libera” is the feminine form of the word “Liberi,” which means “free.”
Our own state’s motto gives women the permission to break free from the prisons that hold them. Often women are unable to identify the areas where they need freedom or they feel helpless to change their circumstances.
We want to carry out our state motto and see all women in West Virginia be truly free! Our service recipients have expressed they often struggle with emotional, relational, intellectual and spiritual freedom in their lives. There is a great need to address freedom on both a general and individual level. Sometimes growth and steps to freedom seem impossible. Often, hope is lost. A lack of freedom can be the underlying cause of many issues. We choose to be proactive in identifying and addressing those barriers that hinder women’s freedom.
How Libera is Different
We are Personalized
Every woman has a story, yet most have never had someone listen closely to their story. Libera gives women the opportunity to tell their stories and have someone intently listen, maybe for the first time. Real change can only take place on a personal level - one woman at a time. We train and empower mentors to impact others as they meet with women one-on-one. Instead of comparing and competing with each other, what if women were empowered and supported one another? Libera is a place for women to find support and empowerment without judgment.
We are holistic
Many women’s nonprofits focus on a single need; yet there are many ways women can be imprisoned. It’s important to offer steps to address barriers in all aspects of a woman’s life - emotional, intellectual, relational, physical, spiritual and financial. Libera will help women assess their barriers and connect them to steps and resources that can help in multiple areas. Those resources will come in the form of a Libera group, a nonprofit, a social agency, a counselor or materials that can help each woman work through her barriers to freedom. Libera takes a multifaceted approach to giving women support and help.
We are Listeners
Many women and teens feel like no one listens to them or understands them. We try to be experts in one area: listening. We provide a listening ear, validation, encouragement, and peer support.
We connect women and teens to the resources they need
Aside from listening, we aren’t experts. We aren’t social workers, therapists, [though we do have one available on staff] or health care workers. But we work hard to connect women and teens to the experts they need for their particular barriers, whatever that may be: social agencies, counselors, nonprofits, resources, books, CD’s, and more.