It is our pleasure to announce that Iris Phillips has recently been hired as the new Advocacy Coordinator for Connecting Horizons, to assist the group in continuing to support those with special needs and their caregivers towards a better quality of life in Kahnawake.

Living in the community all her life, Iris has always known that helping people was her calling. Over the years, Iris has volunteered as an EMT/Firefighter, lacrosse and hockey coach, along with assisting with short term care of a family member suffering from Alzheimers, experiences which have contributed to her natural empathy and humanistic outlook. She briefly attended McGill’s Aboriginal Social Work course in the late 90’s, however she left to raise her young family.

Having a child on the autism spectrum has helped Iris understand the struggles, hardships, and frustration parents go through in order to get the best services for their children. Attending parenting classes and support groups and consulting with educational professionals has greatly opened her eyes to the programs and resources available to those with physical and neurological issues, as well as the gaps in such programs.

Over the course of the next year (and hopefully beyond), Iris will be working with the members of the Connecting Horizons group, advocating with and accompanying family members and self-advocates, as well as further developing relationships with many of Kahnawake’s institutions and resources to improve programs and services.

In addition, she will be working closely with the members of the Oversight Committee to obtain continued funding for upcoming projects to benefit those with special needs and their caregivers. We have great confidence that she will perform her duties with diligence and compassion, and play a critical role in building capacity and generating awareness for Connecting Horizons.

Please join us in extending an enthusiastic and warm welcome to Iris in her new role! (


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