The Townsville Bulletin ran a story on my public speaking to school children.
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.
Teacher, Lawnton School.
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!
My beautiful cards and pencils I received after my talk yesterday. This was the feedback from one of the beautiful teachers there..
Thank so much for today. The kids couldn’t stop talking about you and didn’t want to leave at the end. The other teachers had so much praise for how wonderful your presentation was. We couldn’t get over how involved they were. I wish my kids were that interested in listening to me, haha. Thanks again, you certainly have a talent for sharing your message.
Teachers do an amazing job and don’t get enough credit for what they do..
I received this lovely card and book from the school that I gave talks to last week.