FIR Interview: Chris Aung-Thwin and Jack Horwitz of


When given the ability to bond as a community, street people have a more powerful voice than they ever could as nameless, faceless individuals shunned by much of society. Building that community and providing that voice is the goal of, a social network that has attracted some 4,500 street people, primarily in Canada but now spreading throughout North America.

In this FIR Interview, Shel Holtz chats with Chris Aung-Thwin, HomelessNation’s national coordinator, and Jack Horwitz, the organization’s head of development and strategy, about the origins of the network, its goals, its achievements and some of the awards it has won, including recognition from the Society for New Communications Research.

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About our Conversation Partners

chrisaungthwin Chris Aung-Thwin is the National Coordinator for – an award-winning non-profit organization based in Canada. A graduate of McGill University, Chris is heavily invested in his community; not only does he work collaboratively with local street citizens, he also teaches an after-school youth soccer program and writes a fan’s blog for the exceedingly popular website

jackhorwitz Jack Horwitz provides strategic planning, communications and public relations. He formerly worked for United Way of Canada as its first national Director of Marketing and Communications and for over 20 years worked for the Canadian Government and the National Film Board of Canada, producing, promoting, packaging, distributing, marketing and financing television, educational, interactive and corporate audio-visual.

A graduate of Fine Arts from Concordia University, Montreal, he has spoken at numerous conferences as well as created curricula and taught university courses, worked in archaeological research, experimental theatre, photography and music.  Currently he serves as Chair of the Canadian Film Institute.

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This FIR Interview is brought to you with Lawrence Ragan Communications, serving communicators worldwide for 35 years. Information:

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(Cross-posted from For Immediate Release, Shel’s and my podcast blog.)

Neville Hobson

Social Strategist, Communicator, Writer, and Podcaster with a curiosity for tech and how people use it. Believer in an Internet for everyone. Early adopter (and leaver) and experimenter with social media. Occasional test pilot of shiny new objects. Avid tea drinker.

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