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Meet Sara Cunningham

This month, the Mama Bear we are highlighting is Sara Cunningham! She is a thoughtful and compassionate mother. She is also the founder of Free Mom Hugs! An incredible nonprofit we support through the Mama Bears Giving Circle.

We are so thankful that she shared her Mama Bears experience with us. We are excited for you to learn more about her!

Why did you originally join the Mama Bears online group?

At the time, I thought I was the only mom with a gay kid in Oklahoma frozen in my fear and ignorance believing that my son was broken, in need of fixing and going to hell. I needed support, resources and a safe place to pour out my fears and anxiety.

How has Mama Bears positively impacted your life?

At the time I joined there were 250 mom’s in the group. We ALL had the same story of feeling alienated from our non-affirming families, church homes and many parts of society. Today there are 40+ thousand members and guess what, we still share the same story. The GOOD NEWS is that as we get educated on the history of human sexuality, science and evidence, we begin to openly celebrate our LGBTQIA+ children, we find our voice and change conversations at the water cooler, speak against laws that affect our LGBTQIA+ family and friends. As Liz says, “Mom’s learn from other mom’s” and, “As the home goes, so goes the world.”

Mama Bears supported and empowered me to take a stand. Mama Bears set the foundation of Free Mom Hugs. We started our first Free Mom Hugs State chapters with Mama Bears from the private group as they were vetted, they have skin in the game and they share and represent the very heart of Free Mom Hugs. Today we have Chapters in every state with over 240 registered volunteers all with one mission – To empower the world to celebrate the LGBTQIA+ Community through visibility, education and conversation. Go to find your state chapter, official Free Mom Hugs merchandise and become a monthly donor.

What does it mean to you to be a Mama Bear?

To be a Mama Bear means to protect, respect and celebrate your children at all costs. We are accountable to our children and their future. To raise happy, healthy LGBTQIA+ children into happy, healthy LGBTQIA+ adults.

Is there anything else you would like to share with the Mama Bears community?

I’m so glad to be on this side of Herstory with you and a special word Ubuntu- an ancient African word meaning ‘humanity to others’. I am because of you and you are because of me. What concerns you concerns me. And lastly, Group HUG!

Share your story!

If you or a Mama Bear you know is interested in being our Spotlight Mama of the month, we would love to connect! Please note that Spotlight Mamas may be anonymous if this makes the person sharing their story more comfortable. It is important to us that we honor the privacy of those in our community. To get involved please email Juliana Jordan at We appreciate you sharing your journeys with us!

Join the Mama Bears Giving Circle!