By Division D Director Shaun Durkin
The ‘ancient eastern’ seaboard of Division D comprises Areas 08, 28, 40 and 50. The value of ‘service’ is one which we can sometimes take for granted, but in a Division with an average club size of just 22 members, our clubs rely heavily on the dedication, expertise and commitments of key members and club officers, a number of whom may be supporting other clubs through dual membership or combined club/area roles.
New membership leading to club sustainability and growth is therefore a key component of Club Success Plans and with 104 new members across the Division in 2018/19, this shows the dedication of our club committees. We will continue working to increase our membership base right through to June.
If I was to describe the culture of Division D it is convivial, collegial and caring. I saw this first hand at our ‘divisional’ Club Officer training in Carlow (July) and Divisional Contests in Naas (November) and I’m thankful to all, including my team of Area Directors, who are making my role so much easier.
by Director Jim Keating
Area 08 consists of 5 clubs; two in Waterford City, and clubs in the towns of Clonmel, Cashel and Dungarvan. The Area Director is Jim Keating, who is ably assisted by Anthony Phelan.
Area activity has included two well run and high standard Speaking Contests with a combined attendance of more than 100 Toastmasters or guests. Contests were held in Waterford, hosted by DLS Communicators and in Clonmel hosted by the local Club. Members from 4 of our clubs qualified for Divisional Finals.
Clonmel Toastmasters having achieved 5 in-a-row Distinguished President Awards
A successful Speechcraft course was run for staff members of South Tipperary General Hospital in Clonmel. The course was coordinated by Isweri Pillay with assistance from members in all Clubs. Denis Corcoran of Clonmel Toastmasters ran Youth Leadership courses for about six groups of Transition Year students for 16 years. Denis has ‘retired’ which is Toastmasters loss. This year Mick White, of Clonmel and Patricia Loughnane of Thurles and Cashel kept on the good work.
The Area had members who did not renew but overall membership numbers have held up. There were several initiatives seeking new members including Open Meetings planned, promoted and provided in several Clubs. Dungarvan members went out to a large, local firm and did a presentation to staff about the learning and social opportunities offered by Toastmasters. The firm encouraged their people to join the club and Dungarvan, a smaller club, got 3 new members.
All Clubs use Social Media to a greater or lesser extent. This work requires knowledge, persistence and effort; it is an area where we can all improve. Pathways is available now to all members – there are good resources available online and some members have worked hard at promoting Pathways, either as Ambassadors or within Clubs. There is a reasonable level of take up. At this stage I am sure that nearly all members of Toastmasters use electronic communication in their work or social activity. Yet I believe that one to one support may be needed to accelerate take-up of Pathways in our Area.
by Director Loretto Kenny
Area 28 consists of five clubs with a total of 119 members. These clubs are Athy, Clane, Kildare, Maynooth and Naas. I have the honour of being their Area Director. From my club visits I have found the club meetings to be vibrant, informative and energising with a bit of “fun” thrown in.
Our Area 28 Final in the International Speech and Evaluation Contest was a high-quality event hosted by Maynooth Toastmasters. I wish all our successful contestants the very best of luck in the further stages of the contests.
The Contest Chair for the evening was Jane Mooney. On behalf of Area 28, I would like to congratulate Jane on becoming a Distinguished Toastmaster.
I would also like to acknowledge the great work and leadership that is being shown in Area 28 by a committed group of Toastmasters who do everything in their power to keep their clubs growing and thriving.
Naas Toastmasters delivers Pathways Workshop
Naas Toastmasters ran a Pathways Workshop in March to support members’ educational progression. Division D Director and Naas VPE, Shaun Durkin, facilitated the workshop that covered the basics of Base Camp; Frequently Asked Questions (Paths, Levels, and Projects); Educational Transcript (Accessing and Completing a Project; Completing Evaluations; Viewing Tutorials; Requesting online feedback; and receiving badges.
Of note during the workshop, was the fact that most participants had reached the same stage in their Pathways competence, that of having selected their Path – and delivering the Project speech(s) during a club night – but not progressing to completing the required assignment within their Pathways ‘Education Transcript’.
Members were delighted that the workshop dealt with this issue and went on the show the link between Pathways online material, recording members’ speeches in EasySpeak and how the achievement of Pathways Levels is notified to Toastmasters International via the ‘Club Central’ function.
by Director Niamh Doherty
Area 40 consists of the clubs of Thurles, Kilkenny, Carlow, Portlaoise and Kiltegan.
Kilkenny Toastmasters host Divisional Contests
In Area 40, Kilkenny Toastmasters hosted the Division D International Speech and Evaluation Contests. Shaun Durkin (Division D Director) facilitated an informative and interactive workshop on ‘Contest Judging – A Values Driven Responsibility’.
Shaun Durkin (Division Director), David Clinton (International Speech winner), Sarah O’Connor (Evaluation Contest winner) and Katherine Ryan (Contest Chair)
By Director Ita Finnerty
Area 50 consists of the clubs of Enniscorthy, Gorey, Wexford and Elavon Arklow.
Wexford Toastmasters Celebrate 10th Anniversary
In Area 50, Wexford Toastmasters are celebrating their 10th anniversary this year. The Wexford club was founded by Bettie Marie Burger Smit and Brian Matthews DTM, members of the Enniscorthy Toastmasters Club, the first club in the county. Enniscorthy members also set up the club in Gorey. Today, all three clubs continue to flourish.
Wexford Toastmasters have been busy marking the year; hosting a public workshop ‘Persuade on Purpose’ presented by Eric Fitzpatrick on January 13th, and later that month a night of socialising and celebration in Wexford Harbour Boat and Tennis Club. A presentation was made to Bettie and Brian by club President Eddie Cassidy, which was followed by the cutting of the anniversary cake by both founding members. Former Wexford Toastmasters and members from Enniscorthy and Gorey also joined in the celebrations to make it a night to remember for the club.
Wexford Toastmasters were also honoured with a Mayoral reception on November 22nd, 2018 to acknowledge the contribution that Toastmasters has made in Wexford. The club is particularly diverse with members of six nationalities and people involved from all walks of life. The club currently meets in The Wexford Harbour Boat Club on the first and third Thursday of the month.