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Category: Schools (Page 1 of 3)

Toowoomba region

‘I CAN’ is the motto we should all live by!

Trish Jackson is an amazing inspiration for Year 5M and other upper school classes at Newtown State School.  Born with no arms she has learnt to do everything with her legs including some lovely art she chose to share with students.  Trish told us that when she walks down the street people call her mean names, which she has learnt to overcome during her life where everything has been tough and done differently.

Trish encouraged the students to give everything their best especially when it’s tough.  The art she shared allowed the students to draw lovely Australian animals and scenes.

‘We know we can- ‘cause Trish has proven that to us!’ said one 5M student.

By the teacher of 5M

You certainly made a great impression on our students. Feedback from grade nine students in FNQ.

It had a good, human appeal. She talked like she knew us and was comfortable with sharing her story

She spoke and presented in a more casual and relaxed way which allowed her to connect with her audience a bit more and it made her presentation more interactive. Her powerpoint gave us many examples of what happens in her life and what she has achieved which really captured the audience and made the presentation really interesting.


Trish spoke to us in a relaxed manner and really from the heart. I enjoyed that she did this and did not just read off a piece of paper which I felt I had a personal connection with her. I loved her powerpoint; it put her presentation on a whole other level. Overall, I truly loved the fact that it was her telling us her story and she was open and honest with us. I loved listening to her. She is an extremely inspirational person; one I will never forget.


Trish spoke with so much confidence and the presentation inspired so many of us and talked to us like she has known us all along and was happy to tell us two amazing stories about her childhood which were funny.



Trish’s presentation was very inspiration and I believe, had a connection with her audience. She was quite comfortable in communicating with us and that meant that she was relaxed. She was very interesting and confident in her presentation and spoke with ease and with her heart. Trish, is a very inspiration woman and helped us understand what we all have so many things that we should be grateful for.

Trish’s presentation to us was very inspirational, and wonderful. Unlike any other speaker, she didn’t use palm cards or read off a sheet of paper which created a connection between her and the audience. The powerpoint was beautiful, along with the pictures, they were great! I loved her personal stories and how she overcame her challenges in life, she is truly inspirational. We learnt so much from Trish, especially how to be more resilient and accepting ourselves for who we are already.
Trish’s presentation was very inspirational and made me not take things for granted, and to always try my hardest at everything. She had created a connection with the audience as she told very interesting and funny stories, and in all she is truly inspirational.
Trish’s presentation was truly inspirational to all and very funny. She spoke from the heart and with great ease. She taught me to not take thing for granted and live life to the full. The stories she told along the way were funny and showed a very personal experience. She spoke of her life in a very personal level making it inspirational and unique from other presentations we have seen in the past. Trish is a truly inspirational, very funny and loving person.
Trish’s presentation was told by the heart and was very touching. I found her stories that she shared to be truly inspirational and gave me an insight into how lucky we are and how fortunate we all need to be. The hardships that Trish shared with us made me think twice about how i perceive things and that you must drive yourself to be better than what people limit you to be. The presentation was spoken on a personal level which helped to create a connection with the audience and truly engaged everyone. The powerpoint gave more insight into what Trish gets up to on a daily basis and images of her family and from when she was younger made it more interactivel. In the end, I understood more about not letting hardships get the better of you and accepting ourselves for who we are. Trish is a very inspirational woman and I am grateful for the time she spent talking to us about what she has gone through and no matter what to always keep your head high and move forward and push beyond the boundaries no matter our ability.
Other then Trish’s amazing, natural and definitely inspiring way of presenting to us, I felt as though she was very confident and assertive when sharing her personal and ongoing difficulties she is put through everyday. I knew life without arms would be difficult but Trish definitely put it into perspective as she had to learn to do a lot things we do with our arms, with her feet! As she said her arms were not the only thing interfering with her life as she also had a heart condition, which made a few more everyday exercises strenuous, this even included walking a short distance. But here she was today doing the things everyone said she was never going to be able to do, this made me realise how capable people without a heart condition or no arms are even when they are still complaining about doing simple tasks. The presentation itself was very engaging because its not everyday we get to hear about someone’s personal life experience without arms and a heart condition, and we were interested in discovering how life would be in other circumstances. Obviously Trish’s aim is to show us how we can overcome hardship and still do whatever we want to do with our lives and she certainly changed my outlook on how we should be living our lives.
Trish was an inspirational women, she inspired me and many other people who listened to her . She overcame challenges that could seem impossible in our eyes, she’s a true inspiration and it’s so lovely to hear from.
Trish is such an amazing, brave and inspirational women. Hearing her speak really changed my perspective on life. The things that I constantly take granted for, she isn’t even able to have. It was very interesting to hear her amazing journey and how to she came to cope with life challenges.
Trish is truly inspiring not to mention very cool. I really enjoyed listen to her stories and learning how her childhood was and how she overcame her struggles
Trish was such an inspirational person. She was confident in expressing her story and taught us to be comfortable with ourselves and focus of the positives rather than the negatives in life.
Trish was an amazing inspirational speaker, her way of talking, you could tell it was from the heart, it was very touching. She seemed so confident about herself, and talks about here disability as a gift. Showing us her a different way of life. I could just listen to her childhood stories for hours. She is someone i would want to be friends with, i hope she can come back to the school next year and talk with us again.
Trish was such an inspirational speaker. She was confident in explaining her story and taught us to be comfortable with ourselves and focus of the positives rather than the negatives in life.

More feedback

Feedback from a teacher from a school in Toowoomba region


Kids were mesmerised by her fabulous artwork. Came away inspired and in awe of how she overcame diversity to create an amazing life for herself. “She’s so flexible!! More flexible than you Miss S!” hahaha

From the teacher who started my journey of speaking to students.

My dear friend Trish has been an inspiration to me all my life. So the year I taught Year Six in my Primary school and came across an Australian Curriculum Unit of work about inspirational people my mind went directly to her. The unit of work mentioned now famous Australians who had overcome incredible obstacles to achieve extremely successfully in their lives. Amazing achievements actually, but my thoughts went to Trish who has shown such courage, persistence and love to be the incredible person that she is and what she has overcome to be successful in life.

I contacted her about coming to talk to my class, which then snowballed to the whole year six cohort of approximately 100 students. Fortunately for me, she accepted the invitation and challenge as she had never done anything like this before, but I knew it was in her capabilities because this would be nothing compared to what she has faced in her life. Trish was ‘Oh I’m not that inspirational Robyn’, ‘Omg, yes you are,’ I said. So we planned a time for her visit. She arrived at the office, I sent the two school captains to greet her and bring her into class. I remember that moment, she was very timid and I’m sure nervous coming in, as you would be to face 100, 12 year olds, but that particular year our year sixes were incredible young people just wanting to know how she coped with life and its many challenges as a Thalidomide sufferer.  What started as going to be a short half hour visit became two hours. She told her story; the children were glued to her every word. A few of us shed a tear when she told us of her birth and the aftermath. The kids were full of questions which Trish answered honestly and without reservation. They felt honoured to know such an incredible person.

Trish showed them how to write with their feet and how she does the everyday life tasks which we so take for granted. The children tried to write with their feet too, there were many giggles at how their writing and drawing turned out, also an appreciation, which they would never have had in their life without Trish. There were many comments of, ‘Are you kidding, how does she do that?’  I was so, so proud of my friend.  Trish showed the kids her photography skills and all she has achieved. On completion of our talk, the children didn’t want to let her leave so the whole class walked her to where her husband picked her up at the front of the school. They waved her off and the constant chatter about her life was the topic of many days later.  I haven’t had her back to school because now I teach Year Two and that unit of work has moved on to High School Year Seven. But this became a teaching moment that the students and I will never forget. I see these students some times and they talk about Trish’s visit and how amazing she truly is. They ask me how she is going and I have told them that they were just the beginning of an amazing public speaking career moment for her. They smile and are proud of her and themselves.

That day ‘my’ children; our year sixes, were taught many life lessons which they carry with them today. They are now in Year Nine. The hand print Trish painted for us is still hanging on my classroom wall and when asked, I proudly tell my new students just how precious that painting is and exactly what it stands for. That day the kids certainly learnt lifelong lessons and what the word ‘inspirational’ truly means. Trish made her mark on those students and changed and enhanced their lives; she made a difference! I am forever grateful to have her in my life!

Feedback from St. Joseph’s Catholic School, Barcaldine

Thank you to St. Joseph’s school for allowing me to use this feedback and photos from my visit to their school.

On Wednesday we had a visit from Trish Jackson who is a motivational speaker. Trish was born with no arms but that has not stopped her from achieving great things in her life. You can find out more about Trish by visiting her website:

Trish spoke to all of the students as part of our buddy activities in rotations, which was very good timing as we have been doing some work around resilience during these sessions. Trish had lots of valuable messages for us. She showed us photos to demonstrate how she goes about daily activities and even hobbies such as fishing. Trish took the time to write every child’s name using her feet as a keepsake for us. After the talk, we reflected on what we took from the talk and each student came up with a goal that they are going to try really hard to work on over the next week. I thought I would share them with you so that you can provide your child with some gentle encouragement!

Our goals:

Matilda – Don’t give up

Bryce  – I will try my hardest

Ben – I will treat others the way I want to be treated

Tim – I will try my hardest in everything

Korbin – I will help people

Reuben – I will never give up and try my hardest

Mia – I will think positively instead of negatively

Bryson – I will never give up

Riley – I won’t laugh at people even if they are different to me

Enzo – I will never give up even if I don’t think I will make it

Cooper – Don’t give up

Joseph – I will show pride and confidence in what I’m doing

Edith – I will put my best effort into maths

Sarah – I will always have a go

Roko – I will try my best because if I do I will succeed

Beau – I will treat people kindly even if they are different

Emma – I won’t judge people by what they look like

Brayden – Don’t give up

Sol – I will help people when they fall over

Reannon – I will always try my hardest

Bryce – I will help other people tidy up

Ellie – I won’t judge people by how they look


Trip to country schools, Queensland.

Last week saw me travel to a little school, who asked me to speak to them in Winton Queensland. During the week I spoke to 5 schools on my journey with over 300 students all up. The trip was long and hard on my body and I am paying the price for it, the simple thing of lifting my leg to clean my teeth in a hotel room that had a very high bench height has done enormous damage to my hips and it will be a few weeks of intense physiotherapy to get my hips back into their normal pain levels, instead of the accelerated pain that I am having now. In saying that, the trip was absolutely worthwhile, the kids were wonderful, engaging and asked great questions. I have posted below some feedback from one of the schools I went to and will post the others as I receive them. I just want to say thank you to the schools for having me and for allowing me to post the feedback and the photos, it is very much appreciated.


St. Patrick’s Catholic School, Winton.

Trish Jackson, a motivational speaker, spoke with our students this morning. Trish is a Thalidomide survivor and has learnt how to live life to its fullest with the use of her feet and mouth. She shared some of her life lessons with the students today. I believe these messages are so important, especially when you hear about the lack of resilience in youth these days. In the last week both ‘The Footy Show’ and ‘I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here’ have made mention of the need to support vulnerable youth. Thank you Trish, you may have saved lives today with these inspiring words:
“Give everything a go.”
“Be happy with who and what you are and continue to move forward.”
“It’s about what we have in life and making the most of it.”
“Your only limit is you – make sure you try everything!”
“Even if you are having a bad day, find and focus on the positive!”

Feedback from Nobby state school, Queensland

Extract from Nobby’ school’s newsletter. Thank you Nobby for having me at your school and for allowing me to use these photos on my website.

All of the students were asked to say one word to describe you. I have attached the Wordle that was created using those words (the larger the word, the more times it has been said.

Feedback from Brigalow State School, Queensland

I found myself in a little town called Brigalow, where I spoke to a lovely little country school, the students ranged from prep to grade 6.

The students were delightful, attentive, and had a go at writing with their feet for me. The students told me about their town and also were very good ambassadors to tell me about the Chinchilla Melon Fest that was happening on the weekend, they were so excited.


Trish and Trevor,

Can not thank you enough for your presentation and talk today.  The kids were absolutely engaged and I am sure that your story of giving anything a go and finding a way around obstacles will be one we can revisit often when they are encountering difficulties in their own lives.


I have paid a lot of money for motivational speakers to visit our school, and yours was well and truly above those.  Very personal and with photos and activities the kids could relate to.  Thankyou!




Trudi Eather


Brigalow State School

Students asking questions during my slide show.

Students comparing their hands aginst Matty Bowen’s and my handprint.


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