Travels From

South Africa


Cape Town

State | County | Province

Western Cape

Speaker Bio

Desiree-Anne Martin believes in the inherent ability for anyone to change. Her mantra is that there is hope, always and she is a Change Facilitator and Inspirational Speaker. Desiree-Anne has her Postgraduate Diploma (with Honours) from UCT and is a Honorary staff member at WITS University where she is a consultant to the Family Medicine Centre. She further lectures and supervises medical students.


She is an addictions and general counsellor, and has worked together with adults and adolescents to help them overcome drug and alcohol dependence, eating disorders, sex, gambling and other self-defeating behaviours for the past 12 years. She works with family members affected by addiction too, as no lives are ever left untouched by the illness.


Desiree-Anne also helps individuals work through trauma associated with physical, sexual and emotional abuse She also imparts skills for how to deal with intense emotions, high levels of stress and a variety of mental illnesses.


She is a member of the Life Righting Collective, an NPO whose vision is to heal South Africa’s fractured past through the writing and sharing of personal stories. She is also a member of Woman Zone Cape Town, an organisation who aims to uplift and empower women from diverse cultures, ethnicities and disciplines using a variety of social and artistic platforms.

Change Facilitator/ Inspirational Speaker


Desiree-Anne Martin is a published author and poet, her writing on racial identification and feminism having appeared in print anthologies, and her poetry in her self-published book ‘believe more deeply’, in print journals, e-zines and poetry websites.


Her memoir ‘We Don’t Talk About It. Ever’ which has been described by Barbara Boswell, acclaimed academic and award-winning author of ‘Grace: A Novel’ as “brilliantly-written and wrenching… whose prose transports you through a whirlwind of emotions”.


It chronicles Desiree-Anne’s life struggles which include childhood sexual abuse, family dysfunction, multiple addictions, toxic relationships, struggles in recovery, and mental health concerns. Her choices led her to becoming an intravenous heroin addict and sex worker. It is ultimately, however, a story of redemption and hope. She has now garnered over 15 years of sobriety.


As the director of her own company and a group practice, a lecturer, workshop facilitator, postgraduate student at the University of Cape Town, wife, full-time mother and part-time warrior woman, Desiree-Anne would like to share with you what she has learnt about changing adversity into opportunity, and – in doing so – how to find your purpose. Available through Speakers Inc., she would like to show you how to unveil your truth, find your authentic voice and speak your truth. She would like to show you that there is no failure in asking for help and no shame in showing vulnerability.


Desiree-Anne offers follow-up Corporate Wellness packages that are tailor-made to suit the needs of any organisation’s employees, including individual counselling and interventions, stress and emotional management, education around addiction, mental illness and trauma as well as support, and access to ongoing group or individual therapy.


She is also available to address high school learners and offers workshops on issues such as healthy versus unhealthy relationships, boundaries, high-risk behaviours and sexual consent.


Desiree-Anne Martin is a vocal advocate for the destigmatization of addiction, abuse and mental illness. She believes that everyone is impacted in some way by one or more of these issues. She wants you to know that help is available. Sometimes it finds you.


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