November 2018

Announcing Dan Rex in Ireland 16-17 November

Dan Rex

Dan Rex, CEO Toastmasters International, to visit

We are honoured to announce a brief visit by Dan Rex to Dublin in November.  Dan’s Itinerary includes: the presentation of a corporate Club Award; lunch with past International Director Ted Corcoran, who is recovering from major surgery, and members of the District Leadership Committee; and a visit to Division M’s Contests on Friday Night.

16 Nov Evening Dan Rex at D71, Division M contests.



As Chief Executive Officer, Daniel Rex leads the Toastmasters World Headquarters team in providing service, resources, and support to 352,000 members in 16,400 clubs in 141 countries.  He works closely with the International President and the Board of Directors to develop the future of Toastmasters and create and execute plans and strategies to reach those goals.

Rex has worked for Toastmasters for 27 years, and during that time he has led several departments at World Headquarters, giving him a unique perspective and an impressive depth of knowledge of the organization.  In 2008, he assumed the role of Executive Director, a title that was changed to Chief Executive Officer in 2013.  Rex’s previous positions include Deputy Executive Director, Director of Communications and Marketing, Marketing Division Manager, and Membership Manager.

Rex holds a BA degree in Modern Languages from Southern Utah University in Cedar City, Utah, and an MBA in International Management from the Thunderbird School of Global Management in Glendale, Arizona.  He holds certificates from the Leadership for Senior Executives course through Harvard Business School, and the Executive Leadership Program through the University of California, Berkeley.  He completed the Strategic Leadership Programme through the University of Oxford.

In addition to his Toastmasters duties, Rex serves as a member of the Key Global Associations Committee (KGAC) of the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE).



#SafeHaven2018 All the photos online

Full photo-sets from District 71’s Conference in Cork, Ireland, May 2018 #WeAreToastmasters. These are published on the Conference’s Facebook page.

Depending on your browser you might see embedded iframe albums from Facebook below

November 2018: Prize Crossword

Prize Quiz

Guest edited by Elizabeth Jordan, DTM (Hertfordshire Speakers)

Win Mini Notebook and Pen Set

Item 6850K



  • All correct answers will be entered in a prize draw. Winners and Answers will be published in the December Edition


2.    The first speech in all of the ten ‘Pathways’ Paths (10)

5.    The new TMI Headquarters is located on a street named after a Caribbean island (7)

8.    Full name of the 2018-2019 Toastmaster International President (9)

10.    Need to complete this activity before and after each Pathways project (11)

12.    The New International President encourages members to strive for this (4)

13.    Full name of the Program Quality Director (7)


1.    The D71 conference to be held in Norwich next May is named after this WW2 Bomber (9)

3.    Effective feedback should include both commendations and … (15)

4.    Frequency of publication of the ‘Toastmaster’ magazine (7)

6.    This is a Toastmaster’s Core Value (10)

7.    As a Toastmaster, we promise to treat fellow members with respect and ……(8)

9.    The first name of the 2018-2019 World Champion of Public Speaking (6)

11. ‘    Method used by Toastmasters when evaluating a speech (8)

September/ October Crossword Results

The winner is Patricia Loughnane DTM of Thurles in Division D. Very many thanks to all who took part

Special Educational Section: Community Outreach Programs

Special Educational Section: Community Outreach Programs

Many of our members are actively taking their Toastmaster skills out into the community. Their endeavours raise Toastmasters International’s profile, attracting new members to our clubs whilst having fun and enriching their skills. Here a series of articles have been collated where they share their experiences and tips for best practice.

The articles are broken down into three main sub sections. One each for the two-main community-based programs of Toastmasters International 1) the Youth Leadership Program (for young adults with safeguarding arrangements) and 2) Speechcraft (for adults). The final subsection is devoted to diverse examples that go beyond this, such as judging outside speaking competitions and training or presenting to non-members

Toastmaster Isweri Pillay (Clonmel Toastmasters, Ireland) reviewed this section. Isweri was actively planning for a corporate Speechcraft that is now underway and summed it up better than I.

That is a wealth of experience in these pages. People have been so generous with their contributions. 3 take home messages for me. Be flexible, prepare well and network to get support from other Toastmasters.”

Due to the volume of submissions the Community Program section has been split into three separate print editions of the District Newsletter. This edition we start with the Youth Leadership Program. For the keen the other two outreach topics are available online now

But first some incentives to get you started

Outreach Programme Incentives

John Cox, Program Quality Director


Youth Leadership and Speechcraft programmes are a wonderful way to put all that Toastmasters experience into practice, helping youngsters and other members of our communities to gain the benefits of our Toastmasters programmes. It will also help to raise the profile of Toastmasters and gain new members and clubs. District can support clubs running brand new outreach programmes through the provision of advice and guidance, marketing and promotional materials, and Programme Kits worth over $30. Contact Program Quality Director John Cox for more information.

The Youth Leadership Program (YLP) – Case Studies

Speechcraft case studies

Diverse Community Outreach case studies

Diverse Community Outreach case studies

Diverse Community Outreach Activities

Outreach is an activity of providing services to any populations who might not otherwise have access to those services. A key component of outreach is that the groups providing it are not stationary, but mobile; in other words they are meeting those in need of outreach services at the locations where those in need are. In addition to delivering services, outreach has an educational role, raising the awareness of existing services

Community outreach extends beyond the Youth Leadership Program and Speechcraft. This is an embryonic section at present, but so far includes:

  1. Sam organizing two training days for the public based on the Better Speaker and Leadership Excellence series of educational speeches,
  2. Daniel describing how Area H44 have worked with redundancy re skill charity Careers Action to lay on educational demonstration meetings and a workshop, and
  3. Pat describes how Speakeasy Toastmasters Club (Mallow) spearheads an annual schools speaking competition.
  4. Unipart Rail threw down the challenge of organizing a Toastmasters Taster Session and Andy tells us how Doncaster Speakers took it up.
  5. Hertfordshire Speakers’ Elizabeth Jordan describes how Toastmasters’ members teamed up to help deliver a recent Rotary Youth Speaks Competition.

Read More

Speechcraft case studies



If you are an experienced member, Speechcraft is a great opportunity for you to present the fundamentals of public speaking to non-members. It can be offered as an integral part of your club meeting or as a seminar-style program presented outside of your club. The content can be delivered in four, six or eight sessions.

In this section we have assembled a diverse range of examples of Speechcraft programs from District 71 and even drawn in an example from New Zealand! The hard won experience behind these case studies will be invaluable to those planning Speechcraft and very fascinating reading for us all. We have so far:

  • Patricia describes the program at Dundalk Institute of Technology (DKIT) and provides a clear guide for the mechanics of the course and her passion for it
  • Danny uses experience from Leicester Leaders to provide much of the strategic thinking needed for planning Speechcraft
  • Sandra reports from the ‘coal face’ as her Speechcraft within the company of Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals Ireland completes to rave reviews from the participants. They were left wanting more!
  • Pat and Teresa describe the Speechcraft in Clondalkin Toastmasters that used an innovative WhatsApp group to keep participants in the loop and engaged – many remained members and two did very well in the contests.
  • Billy describes the Speechcraft inspired Boot Camps he organized to help coach Plain Speakers back to health by opportunistically utilizing the very scarce manpower and financial resources. Three participants became members going on to become committee members.
  • Daniel, Sultan and Luc describe how Cambridge Speakers opened the door to Cambridge University with a Speechcraft for six masters law students which lead to a further inquiry which lead to the application to organized a new corporate club
  • Bob reflects strategically on Speechcraft Camulodunum Speakers run with the University of Essex Public Speaking Society revealing the mechanisms, constraints and opportunities of Toastmastering within Academia.
  • Daniel, Alistair, and Mike  provide a very insightful description of the innovative New Zealand concept of community based Speechcraft Clubs to be found in most major population centres

Read More

The Youth Leadership Program (YLP) – Case Studies

The Youth Leadership Program (YLP) – Case Studies

The Youth Leadership Program is a workshop consisting of eight one- to two-hour sessions that enable young people under the age of 18 to develop their communication and leadership skills through practical experience. The program is presented during or after school, or on weekends. In the workshop, young people learn valuable skills including:

In the section we have two articles from first-time YLP coordinators and three from more seasoned coordinators. In among them there is one article where a mother joined Toastmasters because of the impact YLP had on her daughter at school presented as a mother daughter interview. These are fascinating stories of working with the young laden with golden nuggets of ideas.

A First for Area H20: Youth Leadership Program at Hertfordshire Secondary School

Elizabeth Jordan DTM (Hertfordshire Speakers) and Liz Burnett (East Herts Speakers)

The first YLP in Area H20 was led by Elizabeth Jordan from Hertfordshire Speakers and Liz Burnett from East Hertfordshire Speakers. It is hoped that following the success of this program, the YLP will become more wide-spread in clubs across Division H.

Over the eight-week period, each student delivered prepared speeches, Table Topics and participated in debates on topics chosen by the students. They enjoyed taking on the familiar roles of Evaluator, Grammarian, Ah-Counter, Joke-master, Toastmaster and Timer and Liz and I were constantly amazed by their enthusiasm and willingness to learn. Their speeches made us laugh, cry and smile.

We believe that three key factors contributed to the success of the program:

  • Staunch support from the Sponsor teacher at the school throughout the program. The sponsoring teacher was known to Liz through her work with the Rotary club which sponsors the ‘Rotary Youth Speaks’ program at Sir John Lawes School. We also benefited from the support of the Division Director, Steve Campion, who attended a YLP session.
  • Thorough preparation and planning before and during the 8-week session. Elizabeth and Liz benefited enormously from the support of experienced YLP leaders including Sam Warner and Brendan Haughton, and from Vicky Lester and Rose Marie Calder. Attendance at online YLP workshops and attending District conference workshops have also been invaluable.
  • Most importantly, having a cadre of young students who were willing to engage enthusiastically with the program and take a lead in the weekly planning and delivery of the sessions.
YLP Class of July 2018, Sir John Lawes School, Harpenden
at the Showcase Event in July

The Sponsoring teacher chose fourteen Y9 students (13 years old) to join the YLP program for varying reasons:

  1. Promising speakers who would benefit easily,
  2. Students with very little experience who would benefit significantly, and
  3. Some with specific needs e.g. a student with a stammer.

It’s a testament to her good judgment and the students’ enthusiasm that 12/14 (86%) remained for the duration of the program which culminated in the final Showcase event in July.

One parent showed her gratitude when she said: “I was amazed to see my son standing up and actually giving a speech. You have done an excellent job with him. Thank You.” In the words of the Sponsoring teacher, Ms Aikman: “Toastmasters was a fantastic opportunity for our students. There was a noticeable difference in both the confidence and presentation skills of the students that took part. In addition, the students had opportunities to clarify and challenge their own thinking in a supportive environment.”

Abbeyfield School, Northampton, Youth Leadership Programme (January – March 2018)

Vicky Lester, Cranfield Speakers Club (sponsoring club)

On Friday 12 January 2018, the YLP started with 19 students taking part, ending with session 8 on Friday 23 March 2018 with 16. This was a new journey, not only for the students at Abbeyfield, but for me with it being the first time being involved with this programme. I had a great mentor who helped me understand the full workings of the programme and support that would be needed to make it a success.

As a summary of the programme, I would say that it was a success, and some of the reasons why are that:

  • those that took part were made aware of Toastmasters as an organisation that can help them develop their communication and leadership skills.
  • they completed the programme knowing the basics of how to organise a good speech, and how to deliver it.
  • they took on different leadership roles and understood chairmanship.
  • they learnt what things to avoid, and that sometimes you DO need to prepare and practice!
  • those that engaged with the programme really improved in their speech structure and delivery during the programme, brilliant to see!

There are learning points that I will pass on and remember for next time, these include:

  • making sure the school does not force any students to participate; they must want to be there as otherwise it can (and did) have an impact on the other students.
  • have a fellow Toastmaster assist you, just to help share the preparation and distinct roles you take on as a coordinator within the meetings. I was the only coordinator with this programme and it was quite a challenge and steep learning curve.
  • be prepared for about half way through to feel like it’s not working, and you want to give up. For me it was that students were not preparing their speeches and doing any preparation for the sessions. However, I’m pleased to say it can turnaround if you 1) keep highlighting the benefits for them and 2) have regular debrief sessions with the Head Teacher (as I did) on the engagement in the room to bring any struggles you’re having to their attention.

And finally, a key thing to remember is that they are 16-18 year olds! They are going to forget to bring their manuals, and they won’t fully appreciate the importance and benefits of the YLP as you do, but, they will have their manuals to keep, and I like to think that the group of students I worked with now know where Toastmasters is when the penny drops and they realise the importance of communicating and leading effectively!

The Youth Leadership Program at Holy Family School for the Deaf

Maggie Owens, Athy Toastmasters Club

Have you ever felt awkward during conversations with colleagues, acquaintances, neighbours and even family members? How would you feel standing up before an audience? Many people feel uncomfortable when they are trying to make a connection during a verbal exchange. So, you can imagine for some Deaf people this awkwardness can be multiplied by ten!

As a fellow Toastmaster and a Teacher of the Deaf I am a great advocate of the Youth Leadership Programme (YLP) on helping our Deaf students to reduce the awkwardness, uncomfortableness, and the stress in communicating to a larger group of people and individuals. The YLP is a programme by Toastmasters that is designed to develop the speaking and leadership skills of young people.

In the past 4 years our school, the Holy Family School for the Deaf had an eight weeks YLP programme with our Transition Year students. Introducing the Youth Leadership Programme into Holy Family School for the Deaf was initially a challenge due to the variety of communication styles of the students. Some of the students communicate through Irish Sign Language (ISL), others with Total Communication and some with Speech only. But promoting language acquisition through effective communication epitomises the teaching styles of our school.

One thing that works very well is to get previous YLP students who had completed the programme to come to talk to the current YLP students and to share their experience. This is an excellent idea, as all the students engaged in a small group discussion about the programme and participated in some impromptu speeches. The collaboration inspired our students and they became very excited about the prospect of starting the Youth Leadership Programme. The meeting also gave our students an insight into the programme before they embarked on it.

I also feel having an experience Toastmaster to come into the school and to help you co-ordinate the YLP is very effective. We are very privileged and honoured to have an experience toastmaster Brendan Haughton who comes to our meeting every week. His input, feedback, and evaluations to all the students have been very valuable.

Observing the students, I witnessed each one of the students overcome their shyness, their habits – such as hands stuck inside pockets while speaking, lack of connection with audience by not using eye contact etc. I saw them creating and presenting very memorable and effective speeches on topics of their own choosing such as “Learning to sail a Boat”, “The day I got my Junior Cert Results” “My love for GAA” and many more. I felt privileged and proud to see the students enhance their eloquence, their interaction and leadership skills through their preferred mode of communication (ISL, Total Communication, Speech) within the friendly environment of the Youth Leadership Programme.

This programme proved to be a HUGE SUCCESS, so much so that the principal of our school Eimear O Rourke introduced it as a full time two period subject for the entire year. This is a fantastic initiative for our students and it gives us more opportunity to enhance all the skills they have acquired in the original 8 weeks programme.

Here are some tips on co-ordinating a successful Youth Leadership Programme.

  1. Invite students from previous years or from another school who have completed the YLP and to share their experience with the students.
  2. Look for a Toastmaster who is willing to come into the school and to help co – ordinate the programme with the students.
  3. Numbers – Our classes are small hence we have two Transition Year classes doing the programme. We have 12 students altogether. This is an ideal number for a great YLP class.
  4. Every month we would assigned the students with a typical toastmaster role for example; Toastmaster; Topic Master; Secretary; Sergeant at Arms, Listener; Grammarian … and so on. This gives all the students an opportunity to experience each role and to improve in their leadership skills. The teacher or Toastmaster would act as General Evaluator at the end of the meeting and give each student feedback on their roles.
  5. We have organised some of our classes is the same format as a Toastmaster meeting and the students love this! They learn how to chair a meeting, they love introducing unfamiliar words etc…
  6. We also organised a mock Table Topic contest – this was great fun! It really encourages the students especially those who tends to give short answers to extend their speeches just a bit longer.
  7. Have a Gavel and a mock president chain – this helps to make the YLP class more official and interesting.
  8. Have Fun! Be creative with your classes and plan the themes around the current seasons or topical subjects at that time.
  9. Look at some famous great speeches for example Martin Luther King “I have a dream……” and encourage a class discussion on why this speech is powerful.
  10. Use that famous line for students to create their own speeches. “I have a dream….”
  11. Invite a professional public speaker to come into your YLP to talk to your class. We have invited John Lonergan former governor from Mountjoy prison to come into our school to talk to the students in January. We are looking forward to hearing him share his experiences.
  12. Have a graduation ceremony at the end and invite their parents and all their teachers so that the students can showcase their newfound communication and leadership skills. Last year we had 8 students and all those students spoke for one full minute on all the brilliant programmes and opportunities they had in Transition year, for example;
  • Transition Year
  • School Trip
  • Young Social Innovator
  • Formula One
  • Challenge Cup
  • Get up and Go Mini Company
  • Gaisce Awards
  • School Shop

The students totally shone as they eloquently spoke/sign on their topic for one minute each.

I believe that all schools should try the Youth Leadership Programme. It gives the students a very valuable speaking/signing experience that will set them for life. One student shared this quote in the YLP class “If you can speak/sign, you can influence, if you can influence, you can change lives”. You never know maybe one day, one of the students will become an inspirational professional keynote speaker! – One thing for sure is that all are primed for success!

“Toastmasters changed my life.”

Debby Looney, Killarney Toastmasters

“Toastmasters changed my life.” How many of us have said that since joining? I certainly have, more than once. I also add, “if only that change had happened sooner…”, like twenty-odd years ago, when it would really have made a difference. And there you have my motivation for running the Youth Leadership Program. The positive impact this program has on teens is obvious to all who are in contact with them. Teachers are astounded by the difference it makes, especially when it comes to negotiations! Over the past few years I, along with fellow Toastmasters, have gone to several schools in our area, to the Transition Year class, which is the class after the Junior Cert, generally 15-16 year olds. This is a momentous year to catch them, especially as schools are often stuck for activities, and money. As the YLP is sponsored by the local Toastmaster club, it is free to the school, and as it is ideally run over eight two-hour sessions, it takes up quite a chunk of time!

Some tips: if the class is large, consider group speech writing and presenting rather than individual icebreakers. Incorporate some role playing, or one act plays, to improve body language, and to help kids to relax. Use emojis or random emotional words during topics to increase vocal variety, i.e. One person gives a topic while another chooses a random emotion to accompany it – so a topic such as ‘how was the summer holidays’ may need to be answered in a tearful voice…Impress upon all of them the importance of public speaking, e.g., family occasions, job interviews, giving presentations in college. Impress this upon adults such as teachers or sports coaches you may be talking to also.

The drawback is that it will take place during school hours, and so finding volunteers can be challenging. However, it is worth the effort, especially when you are stopped by a mum in a supermarket who thanks you for the difference you have made…

Leading on from this, I have given talks to local women’s, farmer’s, and sport’s groups, as I believe reaching out to the public is the best way to share what Toastmasters is about. All it takes is a phone call to a club President or Secretary, usually they welcome any kind of ‘entertainment’! I think most people recognise the importance of self-confidence, the ability to speak up for yourself, and the talent of selling yourself, which is what Ralph Smedley had in mind originally, isn’t it? I believe that with the economic collapse, and the subsequent jostling for jobs, the importance of doing a good interview was on everyone’s mind, especially the mothers of young people. However, Toastmasters can be such a positive and encouraging place, that self-esteem is also built. This is what I always explain to people, it’s personal growth on so many fronts.

Ladies from the kilcummin ICA

Does reaching out in a personal way help the club? I believe so. It may not have a direct impact – if it did, our club would be overrun with middle aged ladies! – but I do believe that it has a trickledown effect. I have certainly spoken to members who heard about us from a neighbour and so on. It’s all about familiarising people with the name, or the brand, of Toastmasters. Hearing someone speak about it leads to internet and Facebook searches, I have definitely always seen a spike in our Facebook ‘likes’ after a talk.

Selling Toastmasters, which is really what it is, is not for everyone. However, as I wrote at the start, Toastmasters has changed my life, and I firmly believe that it can do so for many people. If you have someone in your club who is outgoing and has the energy and time on their hands to go out there, support them! Remember – nobody is 100% altruistic, we all like a bit of recognition now and then.

I joined TOASTMASTERS because…

Isweri Pillay Clonmel Toastmasters

I joined TOASTMASTERS because my daughter, Lauren, participated in a YLP as part of her Transition Year at school. Denis Corcoran, a Clonmel Toastmaster for over 30 years, delivered her programme. Denis is a fantastic coach. In fact, he sat beside me and talked me through my first visits, as a guest, to Clonmel Toastmasters club. Now my club!

Lauren Igoe is 18 years old and at University in Cork now, in her first year. She put herself forward as Class Rep. YLP is partly responsible for that confidence to lead. I emailed her and asked her to answer a few questions about her experience.

Where did it take place?

It took place in Loreto secondary school in Clonmel, in one of the classrooms.

When did it take place?

During my fourth year in school. 2015/2016

How many sessions were there?

I’m not sure how many sessions there were. But I think maybe 10 weeks. 1 per week, I think on a Friday

How many took part?

The entire year did it, but we were split up into 3 groups by class and only did it for one term.

Was it compulsory?

Yes, it was compulsory.

What worked well in the programme?

Our class was so close already, so it was a safe space to give speeches and debate. That encouraged people to get out of their comfort zone.

What did you not like?

I thought the roles were distributed a little unevenly. (I asked her to explain this. She meant that if someone didn’t want to do a ‘hard’ role like a speech, they could choose to be an ah counter or something. This meant the rest of the group had to pick up the slack and take on ‘harder’ roles.)

What did you personally enjoy and why? Did you learn anything from doing it?

I really enjoyed giving speeches and the table topics. I learned how to give positive feedback and I became more confident at giving speeches.

Do you think other people wished they had joined the program once they understood what it was about?

Well we weren’t given a choice to do it or not. So, no.

If given a choice would you do it again?

Yes, because it improved my presentation skills and confidence in giving speeches in front of other people. It gave me confidence. The girls who didn’t give speeches and stuck to roles like the ah-counter didn’t get anything out of it. They stayed nervous when speaking in public right up to 6th year at school.

Outreach Programmes – Prepare to be Flexible

John Cox, Program Quality Director

Roma and I have run several Youth Leadership programmes and aspects of the Speechcraft programme for the last six years – our biggest learning has been that we must be flexible.

There has been no “one-size fits all.”

It all started when a local Rotary Club, who run their Youth Speaks Contest, contacted our club to provide some coaching to youngsters from an Independent Girls school. Four of us from our club went along for a couple of hours and low and behold, a few weeks later, several of the girls did exceptionally well in the contest.

So well in fact that their teacher invited us along to do some more coaching. The school was also entering the English-Speaking Union and Catenian Association Contests. Our first Youth Leadership Programme was born.

Trying to run a conventional programme when we had 24 girls aged from 11 to 18 for one hour a week was a challenge – particularly when their main goal was to win contests.

With the support of two other members we initially launched the programme in 2013. We had to tailor the programme to fill the one-hour lunchtime slots and to fit in with the number of weeks when students were available. On some days we split the group with the assistance of the 2 other Toastmasters as assistant co-ordinators.

The first programme was so successful that we have repeated it for six years. The programme has been modified and fine-tuned but essentially it follows the same YLP principles of prepared and impromptu speeches, evaluations, and educational sessions.

Some girls have continued to join the programme year after year resulting in many contest wins. Every Head Girl has also been a YLP attendee. Parents have also been impressed at the way in which their children have developed.

We have also supported many of the students with interviewing skills and preparing them. for University interviews.

Moat Community College in Leicester – it shows the diversity of students that the programme supports and the boys who were camera shy!

We recently ran another successful Youth Leadership programme for a local Community College whose 20 + students on the programme were predominantly from an Asian background. Again, we had to modify the content and timings to fit in with the one-hour sessions and the school curriculum.

Both programmes culminated with the students presenting their new-found skills to their families and teachers.

Other spinoffs have included some of our club members acting as judges for the Young Farmers Public Speaking Competition.

Applying the same principle of flexibility has allowed us to run variations of the Speechcraft programme. [Speechcraft is covered in more depth in the next print edition of the District 71 Newsletter or available online now]

Universities run a worldwide programme called Enactus where students take entrepreneurial action for others to create a better world.

Through this programme, Nottingham University has set up several mini businesses over the years including supporting ex-offenders and under-privileged youngsters.

Using the principles and practices of the Speechcraft Programme we have been able to integrate with their programmes and help their delegates to find their voices, increase their confidence to tell their stories effectively to an audience.

The ex-offenders wanted the confidence and skills to go into schools to talk to the children about the perils of falling into crime – drug taking, gangs and prostitution.

The other youngsters were to present to senior members of their housing association regarding the challenges of growing up on their estates, and their future community needs.

Raising our profile in the community has certainly paid off, gaining us several new members and University student members. We also took part in Nottingham’s Festival of Words where we ran a Table Topics session at Nottingham’s Speakers’ Corner.

There is no doubt that these outreach programmes achieve powerful outcomes for participants, gained us some new members and have certainly raised our profile in the community.

Guest Division H

Guest Division H


Steve Campion DTM (East Herts Speakers), Division H Director

Having the privilege of being the featured Division for this edition of the District newsletter means that we get to share some of the adventures of our members. In this edition, we learn what happened when a very new member went to our Division conference, hear about how two of our clubs celebrated educational awards, learn about the benefits of advanced clubs, and enjoy tales of spooks, stories, and supper. This edition is focused on what happens when Toastmasters get out into the community, so look out for the articles by Elizabeth Jordan, Vicky Lester and Daniel Sandars about youth leadership and helping people in their careers [See links at bottom].

What can I tell you about Division H? Well, we’re:

Home to the District Cruciverbalist. Why not take the challenge of entering the monthly crossword competition? These wonderfully well researched questions are set by a member of Hertfordshire Speakers and they aren’t fiendish at all. Honest.

Hospitable and social. Many of our members are members of multiple clubs, which helps to spread experience and excellence. It also makes life horrendously complicated when it comes to finding eligible judges at speech contests!

Homologous with The Bahamas: OK, so the beautiful countryside of Area 20 doesn’t obviously compare with the beaches around Nassau, but it does something in common with District 61 area 92. In the past Toastmasters year, they were the only two areas in the world to have all six clubs reach Presidents’ Distinguished status

Hungry for growth: We recently welcomed Luton Communicators as our latest club to charter, and look forward to Stevenage Speakers and Milton Keynes Confident Speakers chartering soon

Honoured to be home to the first person in the District to complete and collect an entire Pathways Path. Congratulations to Elizabeth Jordan on her success with the Leadership Development Path. Elizabeth is also the first person to complete the Pathways mentoring programme.

Hilarious. We’ve just held our Humorous Speech and Table Topics contests. I’m still giggling when I remember it

Hitting new highs with Pathways: Did you know that out of the 111 Pathways awards in the District, 30 of them have been earned by members of Division H?

Hot! But that’s obvious….

Adventures of a newbie

Andrea Lee, Stevenage Speakers prospective club

When Stevenage Speakers Club launched in the summer of this year, I signed up hoping it would allow me to practise new skills and help me to feel more connected with the outside world. I certainly struck gold when my mentor, Steve Campion (Divisional Director), agreed to be my Pathways Mentor. He encouraged me to broaden my horizons by attending events outside of my own club and recommended that I attended the Divisional Conference.

As a ‘newbie’ this could have been a lonely experience but, in practice, was far from it. At Stevenage Speakers we often have visiting Toastmasters supporting the club and I recently visited North Herts Speakers too. This meant that although there were already familiar and friendly faces, and one even jumped in my car to help me find where to park!

With “The Future of Communication” as the theme of the day, the Divisional Conference was certainly the place to be to help me feel connected and happening. Not only was it inspiring and entertaining to meet and listen to so many competent speakers, I was able to make new friends and pick up tips over lunch about how to commit my speeches to memory – my current biggest struggle.

The highlight for me was a Table Topics session, live on the big screen, with participants from as far away as the Caribbean and South Sudan. Presentations about how to ensure websites make the first page of Google were current and useful for all attending. With so much modern technology, and the world changing at the pace of knots it was also interesting to hear from individual Toastmasters about what they felt technology added or took away from the whole mix of communication methods.

Overall, it was a fantastic day, which left me buzzing for some time after. I would like to extend a huge thank you to the many Toastmasters who worked so hard to make this event such an enormous success.

Advantages of Advanced clubs

Nigel Oseland (Cornerstone Communicators)

Nigel OselandAfter a few years in Toastmasters International, you may look at further ways of advancing your speaking skills. Challenging yourself to contests and attending conferences all help, but have you considered joining an advanced club?

Having been a member of Cornerstone Communicators Advanced Toastmasters Club in Division H for over a year, I have concluded there are three good reasons to join such clubs.

Firstly – I was first attracted to visiting Cornerstone Communicators due to their program of useful workshops. Some workshops are facilitated by club members and fellow Toastmasters, but external experts are brought in occasionally (and workshops are often free to members). For example, I have attended valuable workshops on quite specific but relevant topics such as: rhetorical devices, “winning evaluations”, humorous speeches, stand-up comedy, presenting on the radio, being interviewed by journalists and so on. The workshops not only provide knowledge but stimulate and motivate further thoughts.

Secondly – Cornerstone Communicators (and other advanced clubs) just do things differently. For example, rather than a standard evaluation the club usually offers an open evaluation – where each member of the audience is invited to provide a commendation and recommendation. Table Topics are very different, and more akin to the impromptu speaking seen on TV. Quite often two or more members will perform together – perhaps one narrating and the other miming, or there may be an absurd dialogue or interview situation in which the two members verbally spar. These Table Topics are indeed challenging but also so much fun than the norm.

Thirdly – As might be expected the members of advanced clubs are experienced speakers, many are professional presenters and workshop facilitators. As with most Toastmasters, they are willing to provide expert advice, valuable within and outside of Toastmasters. They are also well connected and know of conference organisers looking for speakers etc. Unlike one-off courses, advanced clubs give you on-going access to these experts.

There are several advanced clubs throughout the District and beyond. You’re welcome to visit Cornerstone (in Markyate) or at one of our monthly online meetings. Go on, treat yourself and join one of the advanced clubs!

Celebrating success

Eldergate Toastmasters has a record breaking year

Esha Sokhi, CC ALB (Eldergate Toastmasters Club)

Eldergate Toastmasters, Milton Keynes celebrated a Goals Awards evening to recognise a record breaking of 24 awards being achieved by their members between July 1st, 2017 and June 30th, 2018. Collectively members earned 7 CC’s, 8 CL’s, 7 ALB’s, 1 ACB and 1 ACS. Eldergate Toastmasters club would like to share some of the lessons learnt along the way to help other clubs in District 71.

Firstly, engage with all your members, understand what brings them to Toastmasters and help them achieve their goals. Secondly, make sure members stay on track by continuously reviewing their progress with the Vice President of Education (VPE). This is easier said than done. Each member was motivated by being asked to set an annual goal. By sharing their intended goals with the VPE, it provides the Toastmaster with self confidence that the goal is obtainable. Individually members were asked a simple but important question, “What are your goals for this year and more importantly how can we help you achieve them?” By reviewing goals regularly with your VPE and seeing progress, soon that self-confidence turns into inspiration of oneself, an unstoppable force.

The third and final lesson is one of having fun and building camaraderie within the club, so members felt supported and develop and realise their potential both in and outside of club meetings.

24 goals are an enormous number so with fizz in hand, certificates, and medals presentations, we completed our jubilant celebrations this summer.

Who needs an Oscar when you can have an EARNIE?

Rose Marie Calder, DTM (Luton Speakers Club)

You have heard about the BAFTAS and the OSCARS, but have you heard about the ERNIES?

If the term the ‘ERNIES’ does not sound familiar to you, then a visit to Luton Speakers Club is in order. In what has become an annual fixture, Luton Speakers Club holds an awards-evening each year to celebrate the success of its members.

The name itself is a tribute to the club’s first three Presidents: Elaine Hide, Rose Marie Calder and Nike Ogundana. The final three letters describe the attributes of our club’s members: Incredible Eloquent Speakers.

Since the concept of the ERNIES awards was introduced we have had a surge in members taking on roles to qualify for the next year’s ERNIES awards. Receiving an ERNIES is an achievement to celebrate in our club

Halloween Spooks & Soup

Davina Malcolm, Hertfordshire Speakers

Six years ago, when I joined Hertfordshire Speakers Toastmasters Club, I never thought I’d be inviting spooks to supper! I did, and it was a tremendous success. In the words of Toastmaster, Elizabeth Jordan, DTM, from Hertfordshire Speakers: “Davina is a consummate storyteller. Her stories together with Bob’s songs made the Halloween event an evening to remember. I hope it will become an annual event.”

Although a college lecturer, I was afraid of public speaking outside my own classroom. Since retiring, I have become a story-teller at local and national events. I am particularly keen on events that promote environmental awareness.

The easiest way to get an audience is to invite them. I planned a Halloween story, song, and supper in our village hall for 24 paying guests. Although finding and presenting the right mix of ghost stories was crucial to the success of the evening, there was so much more involved.

All the range of skills I’d practised at Toastmasters paid off as, for the event, I had to be President, Toastmaster, Sargent-at-arms, and speaker.

Agreeing the date and venue was the easy bit. Delegating the songs to my husband Bob was a given. Luckily a cook was also available, and happy to fit food courses into our playlist schedule. (“Playlist”: there’s a novel word in my repertoire.) Next, I advertised using posters and, for the first time, the village Facebook page. Design, put up, check, then actively sell tickets to ensure we had a full house.

I had delegated decorating the room to a friend with an eye for design and detail but, in helping her, I learnt that it took longer than I thought. It meant I had no time left on the day for rehearsing or panicking. Instead, dressed up and ready to go, I was there to meet and greet. In my introduction, I remembered to include Health & Safety, phones off instructions plus a review of the format of the evening. Telling spooky stories that had been running around in my head for 3 weeks was a relief. I could let the demons go.


The Youth Leadership Program (YLP) – Case Studies

Diverse Community Outreach case studies

Pathways is here but is your club making the most of it NOW?

Pathways is here but is your club making the most of it NOW?

John KendallJohn Kendall DTM (North Herts Speakers), Past Pathways Ambassador and Guide

Around our districts there are hotspots of Pathways activity, but there are others that have yet to fully grasp it.

What distinguishes clubs making the most of pathways from the others?

Some of the factors are:

  1. Champions – who know more about the projects or how basecamp works,
  2. Senior members e.g. New DTMs, setting the example of starting a path,
  3. Most of the officers starting a path,
  4. Some members making fast progress in pathways,
  5. Giving new members are good start.

The learning load for a new member was high enough when they had manuals and loads of people to ask about things.  Now they are told how to login and most people in the club can’t help them and before they can start they have to choose a path from 10 without really knowing the consequences.

Toastmasters works best by doing things in small steps – a salami approach.  So how do we make it easier for a newcomer to do their Icebreaker?  If we had lots of experienced members in the club, we could mentor them about paths and teach them how to use choose a path and how to cope with the basecamp implementation.

Now we don’t have enough pathways experienced members in most clubs –  so until we do, we can make the steps to start smaller.

VPE (Vice President of Education) gives all new members electronic copy (PDFs) for all level one projects, as they are the same in all paths, and while they are doing these – introduce gradually to the paths – and basecamp.

By the time they have finished the third project they will have to choose their path and learn basecamp to go on to level 2.

This will speed the process & time it takes for new members to get their first award.

Remember our core values, Integrity, Excellence, Respect & Service.  Are we, being good clubs members doing all we can to maximise the benefits of pathways for new members?

District Officers will know that Pathways gives the opportunity for new members to contribute to Distinguished Club Programme goals in their first year and the mix of traditional and pathway goals allows club to achieve a higher performance than usual.  Are your club officers including new members in their plans?

Of course, pathways are not just for new members, it is for all of us.  We all joined Toastmasters International to learn new skills, not for CC or DTM awards.  Pathways is simply a way we can choose our new learnings.  When we do the icebreaker at the start we bring all or current knowledge with us and build on it as we progress.

It is said only babies with a full nappy look forward to changes.  That is not true of Toastmasters is it?  We are all here to learn new things, aren’t we?

Club Growth News – November 2018

Club Growth News

Gerard MannixGerard Mannix DTM, Club Growth Director


Any member who has a suggestion of a location, community or a workplace which could has the potential for a new club please contact myself Gerard Mannix germannix @ gmail . com,  your Area or Division Director or any member of the District team. You are invited to be involved in the GROWTH of Toastmasters District 71

Now that Halloween is done the real fall time of year is approaching.  At this stage meetings have got into full swing and contest time is with us.  Good wishes to all members participating.

Does your club have many guests?

Toastmaster clubs need to encourage new members to join to maintain quality meetings and continuity.  This time of year, District 71 has an incentive for clubs that add 4 plus members.  Each club that attains these extra members will qualify for a pizza voucher valued at 45 euro.  Yet, if the club does not like that food a voucher valued at 45 dollars for purchase of goods from the Toastmasters International store.

Fall into Winter Award

Club Growth PIZZA Incentive

Club Growth PIZZA Incentive

November 1 -31 December

  • Clubs that add 4 plus members during this period will be awarded a pizza voucher valued at 45 euro or for those in the sterling currency a voucher valued at 40 pounds
  • Or a voucher valued at 45 dollars for purchase of goods at Toastmasters International store.

Thank you for your attention and the magnificent work you are undertaking.

[Always check the The Latest Information on District Incentives]

Membership Contest Smedley Award Results


Cambridge City Communicators

Manchester Orators Toastmasters Club

Heart of England Club

Leeds City Toastmasters

Castleknock Toastmasters

Naas Club

Clondalkin Toastmasters

Galway Club

Glasgow Toastmasters

Lincolnshire Speakers

EI Toastmasters


This is the membership award where clubs have added five new, dual or reinstated members between August 1 to September 30 2018

New Clubs

Any member who has a suggestion of a location, community or a workplace which could has the potential for a new club please contact myself Gerard Mannix germannix @ gmail . com,  your Area or Division Director or any member of the District team. You are invited to be involved in the GROWTH of Toastmasters District 71

With great please District 71 can announce our latest clubs.  Very many congratulations to all involved.

  • McAfee Toastmasters Cork, Club Number: 6806020, District 71, Area A3, Charter Date: 23rd October 2018
  • Luton Communicators, Luton, Club Number: 5941966, District 71 Area H32, Charter Date: 31st October 2018

Club Growth Map Novembnr 2018


Club Banner presented at DELL EMC Limerick