Trish Jackson

Footsie Photos

Tag: #disability #speaker #advocate #Queensland

North Queensland

During August I went for I little drive about 3500 km to Ingham in North Queensland to be guest speaker at Ingham High School’s awards night.


On the way I stopped at Magnetic Island Primary School (my first overseas speaking engagement) were I did two presentations to the whole school, it was a location and a great place to start my trip. I spent the weekend sightseeing in Townsville, as well I managed to catch up with family and friends.


Monday was a sleep in as my first Townsville school, Ryan Catholic College was not till after lunch where I did two presentations to the Grades 3 and 4.


Tuesday saw me head to Townsville Central school again for 2 midday presentations this time to years 5 and 6 with a special guest my daughter Erin and 1 of her friends, the pressure was on, as Erin had never heard me speak before.


Wednesday is usually my rest day, but I was on a mission, I was looking for Cootharinga crippled children’s home where I attended as a day student for grades 1 to 3. Unable to find the exact location I contacted them, they are still around but now as a service provider for people with a disability. After locating the exact address of my old school, I headed off to the head office of Cootharinga to look through their archive library to see if there were any photos of me when I was there at school. I got to meet staff and find out about what Cootharinga does today.

Watch this space more news about this to come.


Thursday was the busiest day of this trip starting with a presentation to students at Townsville Grammar’s Northshore Junior Campus speaking to prep to year 3 with several guests like Peter from Townsville Sailablity, and the marketing department of Cootharinga and numerous parents visiting the school on its annual open day. I believe the adults were as impressed as the students of what you can achieve with a positive attitude and simply having ago.

I said my goodbyes, jumped back into the car and headed off to Ingham for Ingham High’s awards night what a school and a fantastic bunch of students.


Friday saw me back at the high school for the whole day, which started with judging a photo competition, followed by a talk to a small group in an informal atmosphere, then it was off to art class where I did my presentation then talked with students about my art but more importantly their art. I did 3 of these 70-minute art groups only interrupted by 2 meal breaks with students.

Friday night saw me out on the town with friends for a joint birthday dinner at Ingham’s finest restaurant Enrico’s with Michael and Ruth Mathews & 2 of their children and their first grandchild. Fantastic food and Fantastic friends.


Over the weekend we retraced our tracks to be at Maryborough Special school for Monday to do my last presentation on this year’s North Queensland adventure with over 1118 people who listened to me speaking along the way. Then it was home to my lounge chair with lots of rest and some drawing, while Trevor unpacks and cleans the car and catches up on his chores.

That just about covers our 2 weeks to North Queensland this winter till next year.

You take that “T” off “I Can’t” it becomes “I Can”

Lawnton State School

At Lawnton State School we dream big and have a philosophy that all our students, regardless of circumstances, are expected to aim and achieve high. Today Trish you were the epitome of grace and dignity and all things that Lawnton hold true. Our students were fascinated with your talk today and the positive way you promoted success on all levels and under all circumstances. 

Our Facebook page is buzzing with excited parents and children  sharing your journey and with one of our little year 1 students telling him mum, “see I can do it mum, Trish said there is no such word as “Can’t”   You have made such a positive impact on all our community with sharing your story.

I love how  both you and Trevor gave your time so freely to stay back with the myriad of students wanting you to draw for them and just be with you.

We have officially made you a Lawnton legend and would love to have you back to our school on our “Dream Big” afternoons where we ask or community to share stories with our students to inspire them to reach for the stars.

Thank you again, you have changed someone’s world today.

Principal, Lawnton State School


Good evening Trish and Trevor,


I just wanted to write and say a huge thank you to you both for coming to our school today and speaking with our community. Your message was so positive and powerful – and has had a big impact with our students and staff alike. At our school we are endeavouring to create leaders, and what better way to do this than to have someone who is an inspirational leader stand before our students and tell them their story of persistence, perseverance, courage and resilience. In speaking with our children today, I truly believe that you have altered the trajectory for some of our little guys in a positive and significant way… an outcome you may never get to hear about until 20 years from now – or maybe ever… but your message will resonate throughout their stories as they live their own lives and influence others in the way that you have influenced them. Just as your friend who was a teacher inspired you all those years ago by asking you to come to her school – you coming to speak at our school will no doubt have that very same impact.


On a personal note, meeting both you and Trevor has reaffirmed to me that there are still genuine and good people in the world, and that as a school we are not alone in trying to make tomorrow a better place for our kids. This has lifted me and has solidified my resolve that we can make a real difference in lives. Thank you.


Now we do things a little bit differently at our school compared to everywhere else that you might have been – and we are big believers in things happening at our school for a reason… so as we mentioned today you are now both officially adopted by our school community and are part of our Lawnton State School family. We viewed today as the start of a beautiful friendship and look forward to seeing how we will continue to cross paths along the way… this is non optional. J


I have included below a quick snip off our school’s Facebook page from a post that was put up earlier… Never underestimate the difference one person with a story to tell can make or where their influence might end!


Thank you again and we look forward to catching up again soon.

Warm regards,

Teacher, Lawnton School.

International Day of People with a Disability 2017

Sunday  3rd December 2017 was #IDPWD International Day of People with a Disability. I was asked to be part of iFLY Indoor Skydiving (Gold Coast, QLD) who are totally geared up to include people with all ranges of disability to participate. Yesterday they gave 100 disabled people to try skydiving for free..

To say it was awesome is just an understatement.. I am so glad I got to do this, I don’t get to do many sporting things … this was just incredible.. The instructors were awesome, caring and just made everyone feel at ease and made the experience so worthwhile.

Toowoomba Rotaract group

This week I had the pleasure of speaking with the Toowoomba Rotaract group. It was a lot of fun.

Some of their feedback was: Thanks so much Trish for showing us that we can do anything we put our minds to, no matter what anyone else says! The feedback has all been positive. You truly inspired our club and showed us what resilience and gratitude is!  You gave everyone a lot to think about and really inspired all of us. 🙂


© 2018 Trish Jackson

Theme by Anders NorenUp ↑