Iris Pirchesky, mother and respected counsel of the founder of One World Blue, Joel Pirchesky, has been an advocate and teacher of the special needs for over 25 years working with art therapy and counseling. Iris has a degree in psychology and art therapy and completed an internship at the Western Pennsylvania school for the deaf and school for the blind. Iris has worked with many types of disabilities, among them have been cerebral palsy, traumatic brain injured, the vision and hearing impaired, mental health clients, intellectually challenged individuals, and her specialty being individuals on the Autism spectrum. She has helped countless individuals with her warmth and caring. She currently works with special needs at teen center at the JCC of Pittsburgh. Iris provides with her skills, art therapy, music therapy, expressive therapy, movement therapy and meditation and guided imagery. She has created a CD for meditation and healing which is available for purchase. It is entitled A Mediation of Prayers and Healing and is available. She will also have additional guided imagery CD's for healing in the near future. Iris is also Director of Animal Welfare for Blupela. Her love of and compassion for all of the Earth's creatures makes her fitting for this role as the director in charge of all initiatives that deal with Animals and their protection and welfare. She can be reached by email at email@example.com.
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The famous quote from Walt Disney, “If you can dream it, you can do it” has been the driving force behind the life of Tim Harris. Born in 1986 with Down Syndrome, Tim’s life has been defined by exceeding expectations and inspiring those around him.
As a 2004 graduate of Eldorado High School in Albuquerque, New Mexico, Tim was elected homecoming king by the highest margin of votes in school history. During graduation week, Tim was also voted Student of the Year by the administration, faculty, and staff.
In his teen years, Tim began to dream of owning his own restaurant. He began working in local restaurants, including Red Robin, where the management had tangible proof that revenue went up during Tim’s shifts. In the fall of 2004, Tim moved to Roswell, New Mexico to attend Eastern New Mexico University. Tim lived in a college dorm and graduated in 2008 with certificates in Food Service, Office Skills and Restaurant Hosting. After college, Tim worked as a host at Applebee’s restaurant and spent time living aboard a sailboat with his parents and traveling throughout the Bahamas.
In October of 2010, the next chapter began and with the help of his family, Tim’s dream of owning his own business came true. Tim’s Place opened its doors in Albuquerque, New Mexico as one of the first and only restaurants to be owned by a man with Down syndrome. Tim’s Place is open daily, serving breakfast, lunch, and hugs.
“I am here to tell you that dreams come true.” Tim Harris
Retrieved on 1/26/15
From the Huffington Post:
Tim Harris and his hugs have made headlines before.
The 28-year-old with Down syndrome is the founder of Tim's Place, "The World's Friendliest Restaurant," in Albuquerque, N.M., where he's known for serving breakfast and lunch with an extra-big hug.
But last year, when Harris' family realized that his birthday fell on National Hug Day (Jan. 21), they knew they wanted to dish out more than just good meals and warm embraces.
So, they hosted the first annual Hug-A-Thon, where Harris hugged more than 1,000 people and raised $6,000 in three days. The money went to Firefighters Random Acts, a nonprofit that enables firefighters to perform random acts of kindness in their community, according to its website.
This year, Harris set a new goal: 2,000 hugs and $10,000. In four days he beat that, according to the Tim's Place Facebook page. He hugged more than 2,000 people and earned $13,000 in donations.
"This is so amazing," Harris says, choking back tears during this year's Hug-A-Thon. "I'm very happy. I have somebody here to love. Everybody, I love every one of you!"
Retrieved on 1/26/15
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