Tina Turner, right, reads excerpts from “Reflections of a Survivor,” while author Valerie Brown, left, signs copies at the book’s launch held at Gigi’s Music Café.


Staff Report

SUNRISE, Fla. – Valerie Brown is a domestic violence survivor and she’s doing everything in her power to help other women have the same fate. In addition to founding The Lady Be Free Resource Center for Women, Brown recently released a book called “Reflection of a Survivor” to encourage women to free themselves from abusive relationships.

She recently held a launch and signing for her book at Gigi’s Music Café, which was attended by business and community groups, donors, community stakeholders and domestic violence survivors. During the launch, excerpts from Brown’s book were read.

“This book is certainly a milestone for the organization and was written to not only raise awareness but to save lives,” Brown said.

Also known as Lady B, Brown is a Ft. Lauderdale native who not only worked at a shelter for domestic violence victims, but was also abused in two of her previous relationships.

In the book, she shares her personal and inspirational account of how the cycle began, the steps she took to break it, and how others can embark

on the remarkable journey for healing and empowerment through self-reflection and personal improvement.

The book also explores the varying degrees of encounters with domestic violence – including stalking, verbal abuse and damage of personal property – and its long-term effects.

Initially Brown kept her personal experience with abuse a secret. Having been raised in a Christian household where she didn’t witness abuse, she was ashamed to share her story.

“I was 21-years-old when I first encountered the abuse and had no idea what domestic violence was. Not because no one had told me but because

I equated domestic violence to be a punch in the face or death and did not consider verbal abuse or threats, etc. (domestic violence),” Brown said. Eventually she changed her mind, believing it part of her purpose to empower other women to gain victory over their abusive situations.

“I am no longer a victim, I am a survivor. A victim holds on to the hurt, is ashamed and sometimes seeks revenge. Now as a survivor, I am able to thank God for the experience, pray for the individuals that caused me harm and reach back to help others who are

survivors too,” Brown said. “My greatest purpose in life that I have been chosen for is to reach survivors and help them be free – both physically and emotionally.”

As such, Brown’s Resource Center is committed to decreasing domestic violence and minimizing its impact through evidence-based research programs that provide protection, education and prevention.

The organization provides domestic violence workshops, empowerment
speaking, community awareness and a survivor mentorship program.

Brown is also spearheading a major fundraising effort to provide transitional housing for a 6-12 month period for women exiting homeless shelters along with comprehensive services including case management, mental health counseling, mentorship, life skills and financial literacy programs.

To schedule a workshop or author speaking engagement, pledge support for the transitional housing center or receive more information contact Brown at vbrown@ladybefree.org or call 1- 855-585-FREE (3733).

“Reflection of a Survivor” can be purchased at www.amazon.com and www.barnesandnoble.com.