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STEPS at Liberty Center Selected as Wayne County Organization of the Month

About MCTV's Organization of the Month

Charitable behavior can lead to psychological, spiritual, and emotional well-being benefits for the giver. Besides helping the community and being a part of a greater good, charitable donations are tax deductible, can give you a sense of purpose and can help keep you informed about issues of social injustice. Each month, MCTV highlights two local non-profit organizations. We have donation boxes set up in our lobbies and have information on our websites about each charity, along with links to their respective websites. MCTV’s commitment to charitable causes creates new ways for you to find, learn about, and support local charities. We try to make a bigger difference in the causes you care about the most and become partners with the organizations in order to bring about change. Donate with confidence to these organizations. They are low-risk organizations, have targeted goals, function with good governance and have transparency policies. To learn more, visit our community involvement page.

STEPS at Liberty Center - “Taking STEPS to Build a Healthier Community”

Substance Abuse, Treatment, Education and Prevention Services, (STEPS), is a private, non-profit organization that provides services relating to the prevention and treatment of substance abuse problems in Wayne and Holmes counties. We are dedicated to preventing and treating chemical dependency and abuse through strategies which meet the needs of individuals, families and communities. Founded in 1974, STEPS (originally Wayne County Alcoholism Services) has grown from a one person operation to an organization offering a full continuum of substance abuse prevention, intervention, and treatment services.

In 2005, STEPS was one of 13 addiction providers chosen nationally to participate in the Robert Woods Johnson Network for the Improvement of Addiction Treatment (NIATx). Since that time, over 1000 providers nationwide have joined this network which has provided leadership with improved treatment outcomes.

STEPS and Every Woman's House completed the process of becoming nationally certified by The Council on Accreditation in 2006. This certification recognizes the ability to provide quality services to clients while meeting the highest level of national standards. Also in 2006, the Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America selected the C.I.R.C.L.E. Coalition as one of the two "coalitions of excellence" nationally for outstanding outcomes illustrating a reduction in alcohol, tobacco and other drugs.

Other notable events occurring in the last few years:  

2008 - Renovated an historic Beall Avenue home to be the house for the Pathway program - a men's residential treatment program. The home was named "Noble House" to recognize The Noble Foundation for their generous contributions to STEPS and the community. 2009 - Provided treatment services to over 900 individuals and prevention programming to an additional 5,000 citizens in Wayne & Holmes Counties.

2012 - STEPS completed a campaign to "burn the mortgage" (loans) covering the Noble House. Thanks to many donations from our generous community, all debts incurred to restore this beautiful home were paid.

STEPS Mission

To prevent and treat chemical dependency and abuse through strategies which meet the needs of individuals, families and communities.

Treatment Services

The counseling program provides individual, group and family counseling for individuals experiencing difficulty because of alcohol and other drug misuse in their lives. Services provided include: assessment, individual counseling, group counseling, crisis intervention, couples therapy, case management, medication assisted therapy, a drug court program, and family therapy.

Residential Services have been designed to provide treatment for chemical dependency in a residential setting, to assist clients with gaining recovery tools to allow for long-term sobriety, and to assist clients in their transition back into the community as stable, self-sufficient citizens.

The Transitional Living Program provides a therapeutic, sober environment for citizens to stabilize their recovery living in a residential facility that is supportive and affordable.

Medication Assisted Treatment
STEPS offers medication assisted treatments through a contract with Summa Physicians, Inc. The program is led by Dr. Nicole Ballerini, an addictionologist with specialized training to prescribe and administer Soboxone®, Subutex® and Vivitrol® for cases where this treatment is deemed beneficial. This vital service assists individuals addicted to opiates to safely and comfortably go through withdrawal and have fewer cravings as they enter the initial stages of recovery and in combination with counseling, this treatment offers the best support in recovery.

Prevention and Intervention
Prevention Services promotes positive development of children, youth and families. The goals are to prevent and delay the use of alcohol and other drugs, as well as to minimize the potential future harm from use. STEPS focuses not only on the prevention of use, but also the development of protective factors. These goals are accomplished through the following programs and services: Youth Empowerment Programming, Mentoring Program, Community Coalitions, Intervention Programs: Insight and Alcohol Education Program (AEP) and Drug Free Workplace Programs.

Prevention and Intervention Services

STEPS Prevention and Community Education department provides a full continuum of services which include:

School Programs and Teacher Training
Our qualified Prevention staff is available to facilitate student groups and to give classroom presentations. Our staff can also provide training programs for school personnel on the latest information and resources about substance use and abuse.

Teen Institute (T.I.)
Students who are members of Teen Institute (T.I.) promise to be drug free and to work to prevent the abuse of alcohol and other drugs. T.I. Students pledge to promote healthy life choices among their peers and in their communities. There are T.I. groups in most Wayne County Junior High and High schools. Countywide meetings are held monthly during the school year along with special events for Junior High and High school members. These meeting and events are coordinated by our Prevention staff.

Volunteer Services
Volunteer opportunities exist to assist the STEPS professional staff with a wide variety of tasks. Our volunteers are critical to maintaining the highest quality care and are an essential part of the continued growth of our agency. If you can spare just a few hours per month on a regular basis, you can make a difference by filling one of our volunteer openings. We provide substance abuse education, as well as skills and policy training to all volunteers, so that each may find his or her service experience enriching and fulfilling.

Volunteer Opportunities:

  • Staff Assistance
  • Events
  • Residential Program Support
  • Clerical
  • Maintenance
  • Special Assignments

We meet with each interested person to ensure that volunteer assignments match their interests. We can be creative and flexible to accommodate YOUR schedule, talents and ideas. Volunteer applications are available in our main lobby during these hours:

  • 8:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m. Monday / Tuesday & Thursday
  • 8:00 a.m. -  5:00 p.m. Wednesday & Friday

You may also contact our Volunteer Coordinator, Rhiannon Whalen at 330-264-8498 or

Community Coalitions
Our staff assists communities in Wayne and Holmes counties with the process of coalition building. Coalitions are designed to give residents a voice increasing and maintaining safe and drug free schools and communities. Members hold regular meetings and develop programs and special events. They also work to solve issues of concern in their communities. Each coalition forms an action plan and sets its own goal.

Advocacy and National Program Participation
We strive to keep substance abuse issues "on the front page" locally by joining a nation awareness and advocacy campaigns. Each October, the national Red Ribbon Campaign takes place. Red Ribbon honors a drug enforcement officer killed in the line of duty and is Ohio's largest prevention activity. Many local schools and community personnel join in this annual fall activity. Schools also embrace Prom Promise during the high school prom season. Prom Promise is an effort to raise awareness of the dangers of drinking and driving among high school students. Students sign alcohol and other drug free pledges, which are then posted at prom time. STEPS staff members help to coordinate these and many other awareness programs.

Make a Donation

STEPS at Liberty Center is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing substance abuse prevention and treatment services to individuals and families affected by substance abuse and addiction in our communities throughout Wayne and Holmes Counties.

Donations enable us to serve our clients better and are fully tax deductible. They can be made in-kind, such as clothing, toys and the like, and financially. If you wish to donate and make a difference in the life of another, please contact us at 330-264-8498.

In Kind Donations

Our community has been very generous with in-kind donations in the past. The shelter constantly needs new and gently used items for clients in the shelter, as well as those who are ready to venture out on their own. Items graciously accepted:

  • Adult Clothing (all sizes, men/women)
  • Children's Clothing (all sizes, boys/girls)
  • Appliances
  • Furniture
  • Household items
  • Personal hygiene products

Wish List

If you would like to help our clients with a donation, new or gently used items can generally be dropped off Monday through Friday, between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 5:00p.m., at the Gault Liberty Center located at 104 Spink Street in Wooster. The following are some of our most needed items by our clients:

  • Baby Monitors for the residential houses
  • New twin mattresses
  • Twin mattress covers and bedding and bed pillows
  • Several pack and play portable play yards for our clients at Beacon House
  • "Starter" plants or flowers to help spruce up residential landscaping
  • Men's/Women's/Children's spring and summer clothing - all sizes / new or gently worn
  • Diapers & Wipes - baby and toddler sizes
  • Personal hygiene products
  • Consumable items - paper towels, toilet paper, kleenex tissue, feminine hygiene products, razors, full size shampoos/conditioners/lotions

STEPS at Liberty Center Connections
104 Spink St, Gault Liberty Center
Wooster, OH 44691-3652

Phone (330) 264-8498 / Toll Free 1-877-275-9227


Hours of Operation
Monday, Tuesday & Thursday 8:00 a.m. - 9:00 p.m.

Wednesday & Friday, 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.