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Jackson's Story


I have promises to keep

They’re stuck in my head, real deep


I’ve got Autism and ADHD

People treat me like I’m a disease

I have a body that just can’t stop moving

Which would be ok, if the world was always grooving

My senses are always alive

Leaves me in constant overdrive

I try so hard to be good

But people just think I’m a hood

I struggled so much in school

Some kids can be so cruel

I want to be just like the others

Not feel like I’m always a bother

My mind keeps going non-stop

Until I finally drop

When I hit overload, my brain shuts down

Leaving me feeling, like I’m going to drown

I have only one or two friends

Who I’ll look after, until the end

If you could just see past my behaviour

It would feel like I have another saviour

I wish you could see the real me

I just want to fly and be free


I have promises to keep

Which I think about each night, before I sleep


Author: Jackson S


Jackson is an intelligent, eloquent young man aged 13. Jack enjoys gaming – a lot! He would happily spend all day, every day, gaming if he could.  His personal favourite is Minecraft.  Jackson also lives with Autism (ASD).

Jackson’s incredible poem above was written during his period of distance education. It gives with fantastic insight into the minds of our amazing children. 


Jackson has made huge strides over the past three years in many areas. Mum and Jack put it down to Jackson’s hard work when he has attended the Veteran Mentors Camp each year for the past three years. Each time Jack returns home Jack and Mum see positive change and this year has been the best yet.

Jack has achieved so much in the areas of taking care of himself, and of self-managing strong emotions and related outbursts - even out of the home environment. Notably, Jackson has learnt ‘walk away’ from trouble. At the last camp, Jackson finally conquered his arch nemesis, an 8-metre abseiling rock wall and then followed it up the next day with a tandem skydive from 14000 ft, which is absolutely fantastic as he suffers from anxiety and not keen on heights at all! (Go Jackson!).


In general Jackson has benefited from increases in life skills, trust, team building skills, maintaining a positive attitude, and personal pride in achievements. Jackson is feeling rightfully proud of his significant achievements and Mum is excited to report that there have been no outbursts in the home or at school for well over a month!! Brilliant outcome.

Jackson has big plans for his future.  With the help of his current supports he hopes to further develop his skills in the areas of independence and emotional management.  He has goals to manage his own obstacles, through the use of apps that he has adapted for himself for reminders, scheduling and time management. Jack will also continue to work towards his dream of becoming an Architect or Graphic Designer, or both.  Jackson also plans to return to Veterans Mentor Camp.  


The family feel very blessed with Jack’s fabulous team of supports.  Mum cannot sing their praises highly enough. The team currently comprises of support workers, therapists and of course roundsquared. 


Below is Jackson’s written description of his sky dive. Again, we see that Jackson has a wonderful way of conveying emotion with the written word. 




I was walking slowly toward the Supervan aircraft that was going to transport me to 14,000 ft above sea level, to then roll out of the plane and plummet to earth. The way up was frightening, but I stayed quiet, as I listened to my instructions. 


My heart jumped for the first few seconds until the picturesque view comforted my initial fear. It was beautifully captivating.  The tandem diver and I began to free-fall for around one minute. I could barely hear my screams of sheer joy as the parachute deployed.  I thought; “that was amazing!”.  We were now spinning around by controlling the parachute and doing small beginner stunts.  As we were coming towards the ground, I couldn’t lift my feet in time to land on our bottoms, so instead, we landed on our side.  I did it.  I just did something that less than 1% of all Australians have ever done.  That is crazy!


Author:  Jackson S

For further information on the Veterans Mentor Camp - Junior Leader Program please follow the link below.

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