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So... do you want the Official Version, or the Real Version?

Because they gave me some boilerplate copy I could put here if I wanted to, something to tell you who I'm running for and why. If you're looking for that, feel free to scroll down a bit. But if you're looking for the Real Version, I'll put it here.


I am participating in the 2018 B&O Yorkville Run to support the Red Door Family Shelter.

The Red Door Family Shelter is a home for homeless and abused women in Toronto.

This cause is very special to me.

I stayed at this shelter. I was one of those women.

One day, when things looked very bad indeed, I snuck out of the house with the laundry money - a roll of quarters and a roll of loonies, totally $35 in all. I put my kid in a hand-me-down umbrella stroller, and got on the bus to Toronto, in the hope of a new life.

Someday, I'll tell the whole story. I'll tell you about the subway being down, about being pregnant with everything I owned in plastic grocery bags on the back of stroller that would break the next day. I'll tell you about getting to the shelter, being given the infamous PNA ("Personal Needs Allowance") and starting to cry because that tiny amount of money was really, seriously, swear-to-God mine.

I'll tell you about taking that little bit of money and buying a slice of pizza and sharing it with my little boy. About that first night, sitting on the stoop outside a Pizza Pizza, monstrously pregnant. Baking in the sun and crying, and crying, and crying with relief.

(There was a lot of crying. In my defense, I was very pregnant.)

I'll tell you how it felt to have a little tiny piece of hope. I'll tell you the dreams I dreamed for the very first time, and how many of them have come true, and how grateful I am to the Toronto shelter system for making that possible. For facilitating a future in which I helped other people build amazing, life-changing businesses, instead of taking my clothes off for money in a Scarborough strip mall.

Today, though, is not the day. Today is about the people we can come together to help.

If you can spare some money to help, amazing things are possible. The official documentation below shows what you can give and what it can do. Lunches and classes and play days and such.

My son ate those lunches. He took those classes. He went on those play days.

It mattered. It changed things.

I tell you from deeply personal experience, your pledge makes a difference. I'm here today because of people like you.


The money raised from this event will fund support programs for children at the Red Door to help them overcome the effects of homelessness and abuse. You can help provide homeless children with happy and healthy memories to carry with them into their new lives.

Please sponsor me and help me reach my fundraising goal! Every pledge makes a difference for a child in need:

$10 – Provides TTC tickets and lunch for a child to attend a recreational day outing.
$25 –  Provides arts and crafts supplies for a child to let their creativity flow.
$50 –  Provides a child with nutritious school lunches for 1 month.
$100 – Funds an art therapy class to provide emotional support for a child or teen.
$250 – Funds a play day for our children’s program.

Online pledging is secure and it saves the Red Door Family Shelter money by reducing administrative costs.

Thanks for your support!

Raised so far:


Lisa Pozzoni
Run Naomi Run! Wish I could be training you for this! Thanks for your help with my business and I love it when people raise money for events! What a great way to get in shape and give back at the same time!
Nick Huonder
good luck,Best Wishes
Heather Craik
In a way, by bringing me you, they've helped my business be what it is today. The work they do is hugely important, and happy to support you in this. Also, adore you.
Alison Luke
Wonderful cause, and one I'm only too glad to support. Sending big hugs and best running wishes. <3
And look at how far you've come - now you lift the hopes of thousands!
Go, girl! Glad to support such a worthy cause.And give your blog readers a weight loss update, right?
Sabrina Chase
Glad you asked. Thrilled to support you. Run strong, Naomi!
Katy Minett
For the kids out there like my best friend and I who needed our mums to know about this (but they never did.) To the 'what ifs.' To possibility. <3
Blair Richwood
There but for the grace of dog... nice work you. RED DOOR must be so proud of their ROI in you~
Magaret Collins
Mary Ann McCarty
Cheering from Texas ... you GO, grrrl!!!
Sandra Sagaria
Lori Fields
Can't think of a better cause or a better women to support. Virtually cheering you on, for the run and for the rest of your life. xx
I make this donation in honor of my friend Beth, who is escaping her own nightmare this week, and doesn't live in Canada.
Very happy to support your remembrance of Red Door’s help to you. Your open book honesty about your Journey helps even more people than you can possibly imagine.
Rebecca Denton
Thank you for being so vulnerable and telling your courageous story. Virtual hugs to you, from one boy mom to another!
You do the running, I'll buy some art supplies. You're amazing babe!
I'm so happy to be able to give a little something to a charity that means so much to you!
Stephanie Brandt
Thank you for giving us the opportunity to donate and support this, Naomi! I hope our gifts are a true blessing to these families.
Andrea Olson
I hate running so I’m glad you’re doing it! Such a touching story and cause - thank you for letting us support!
Thanks for the opportunity to contribute
Cathy Stucker
You are an inspiration. You go, girl!
Susan Pomeroy
Thanks for keeping it real, Naomi! Your honesty is a blessing for those of us who struggle to do the same.
You go, girl!
Wonderful stuff. Happy to help, even in a little way
Rachel Cooper
Good luck!
Jessica Frick
Go get 'em, Tiger! <3
Dannielle MacDonald
So haapy you asked. So happy you made it. Run strong! Walk 98% if you have, I don't care!!!
Gwen Ames
Love your honesty and authenticity!!