31-year-old Michael Jacques can't read or write, yet he has self-published two books.
This is a sure example of not giving up - a message that he wants to relay to teachers, parents, students and families tonight. (Thursday, November 24)
At a young age, Michael was diagnosed with autism and an intellectual disability. Never one to shy away from obstacles, Michael has made his authorial debut, sharing experiences from his life to help audiences understand accepting and belonging. His story demonstrates the empowerment that comes from being comfortable in your own skin, knowing your strengths, valuing relationships, and giving back to your community,
"I do things differently. Never give up. Think outside the box. Everyone is curious about how I wrote two books because I can't read or write. But obviously, you don't have to because I've written two of them. I used speech-to-text technology on my iPad. My first book took me five years. It's called 'Can't Read. Can't Write. Here's My Book'. It was a catchy title," says Michael.
His second book 'I belong: Can I Play?' focuses on inclusion and how he learned sports in a different way. On top of the two books, Michael was appointed to the Minister's Advisory Council on Special Education. He was elected President of the Board of Directors with Community Living Ontario and is a Special Olympics athlete in baseball and basketball.
The community is invited to Ste. Margeurite Bourgeoys for a free presentation from Michael Jacques and his father Marcel tonight at 7:00 p.m. The presentation will run roughly 45 minutes followed by questions. If you can not attend in person, the presentation will be streamed live on Microsoft Teams.
"Michael has a very positive attitude. He's there to inspire and hopefully change the mindset or attitude of people - that anything is possible! Parents need to know that if they have a child with special needs not to give up. Focus on what your child will be able to do. That's the big story. We hope that a lot of people join us at SMB. They need to hear Michael's story. ," says Marcel.
Michael and Marcel joined today's Q Morning Show to tell us more about the Can't Read, Can't Write, Here's My Book Journey. Listen below!
Michael's books can be purchased on his website heresmybook.com. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to Community Living Ontario and Special Olympics Canada.
This presentation has been put together by the KCDSB, KPDSB and KACL.