Marnie Grundman

Marnie Grundman

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Spokesperson and Advocate for At-Risk and Homeless Youth

Marnie has been featured on over 100 major television and radio shows in Canada, the United States and Europe including CP24, Breakfast Television, Global News, The Marilyn Denis Show, Young Justice, Here and Now CBC, NewsTalk 1010, and the National Association of Adult Survivors of Child Abuse.

A child who belonged to no one, missing at the tender age of 13, she spent years living on the streets where she experienced the worst of humanity firsthand. In her darkest hours while living in an apartment complex sauna, she was sure that everyone who knew her had forgotten that she even existed. It was in those desperate hours that she decided she was paying up front for a better life that lay ahead.

What began as a story of healing led to one of triumph, of the power of the human spirit. Marnie has since become an advocate for the missing, working to change the perception of runaway children so they might finally get the help they desperately need.

Marnie’s personal experience as a homeless youth and runaway gives her the ability to share a first-hand insight that touches and inspires her audience. She is candid and possesses a vulnerability that allows her to connect on a deep level with her listeners.
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Speaking topics

Nothing Bad Happens Behind Pretty Doors

From living in a financially privileged home to living on a park bench on the streets at 13, Marnie shares her experience as a ‘surthrivor’ of child abuse and homelessness with full transparency and a vulnerability that draws audiences in as if she were speaking to each person individually.


  • The truth behind why kids run away from home and how to provide meaningful, trauma informed, and effective intervention
  • Adaptive resilience
  • Embracing healing as a lifelong process
  • Turning survival into ‘surthrival’
  • Simple acts of kindness we can all share with people experiencing homelessness

HABITUAL RUNAWAY | Keynote/workshop

A Trauma informed workshop designed to inspire, educate, reduce burnout and reignite professionals who work with children. Target audience: Social service organisations, hospitals, schools, medical professionals, mental health professionals, educators, law enforcement professionals


  • Getting to the truth behind why kids run away through trauma informed language
  • Prevention
  • How to provide meaningful and effective intervention
  • One interaction can be life changing
  • You ARE making a difference

It’s Not Personal | Keynote/Workshop

​Healing the mother wound. It’s not a bitch session or a bashing session … it’s a let’s let go and live our best life workshop. Marnie uses her experience as the daughter of a narcissistic mother, generational abuse and behaviour modification practitioner to help victims and survivors to reframe and redefine the unique trauma attributed to growing up with a narcissistic mother.


  • It’s not personal, it’s generational
  • We are all worthy of parental love
  • Family vs. Relatives
  • Choosing your family – comes with navigation
  • Clean breaks – the reality
  • Mental Judo – altering the rules of engagement
  • Healthy boundaries
  • Toxic cleanup

YOU ARE NOT ALONE | Youth Workshop

Focus: Runaway Prevention | Human Trafficking Awareness
Trauma is a lonely road. When something bad happens, people (especially young people) have a tendency to think they are the only one experiencing this pain. Worse yet, they think they deserve it, and the trauma they suffer is compounded with guilt, shame, and isolation. This workshop shines a light on the truth in an interactive and meaningful way. Attendees leave with a new set of tools to help them be more mindful of what’s around them and supportive of peers who may be suffering. Awareness, compassion, and connection are vital to ending cycles of trauma and abuse and restoring our self-worth and our place in the world.

Video clips

Marnie Grundman

Speaker testimonials

We feel fortunate that Marnie Grundman has come to share her moving account of her life as homeless 13-year-old a couple of times with our donors. She gives a face to the experience of a vulnerable young person on the street, and she offers her testimony with an open, generous spirit. As a speaker for your event, Marnie will engage and inspire your audience, and offer them a story they will not soon forget.

Stacey Carcao | Covenant House Toronto

Marnie had the audience captivated instantly….you could hear a pin drop. That’s quite the feat when you’re speaking to over 250 guests at The Hard Rock Cafe. She is incredibly poised, articulate and so relatable. She could be your sister, mother or best friend. By sharing a pivotal time during her homeless years, she poignantly conveyed to us how one single positive relationship or conversation, can be life-changing. She brought meaning and context to our fundraising event for MyToronto: Changing Perspectives- a Ve’ahavta initiative that recognizes and celebrates the perspective of people affected by homelessness through the art of photography

Diane Pinsky Rothman | Love MyToronto

Marnie Grundman is such an inspiring activist and advocate for youth experiencing homelessness. Marnie came to speak at Wilfrid Laurier 5 Days for the Homeless campaign, and left the crowd speechless with the reality homelessness plays in our society. I would highly recommend Marnie’s book Missing to all ages, as the message she sends is eyeopening. We often don’t stop to think about the stories behind faces and are quick to judge. Marnie helps break this stereotype by sharing her story and is living proof of how far a random act of kindness can go. She is a role model we are all lucky to have!”

Marnie McCormac | Director of Education for the Laurier 5 Days for the Homeless Campaign

Marnie is raw, real, transparent and not afraid to be vulnerable in order to have impact and move people towards their higher selves. She lets audiences in and then holds them by the hand as she takes them on a journey towards allowing their stories, their true essence, and their own form of honesty to step forward to bring them peace and joy on their own path towards fulfillment.

Rick Clemons | Host of The Coming Out Lounge Podcast

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