Tuesday, December 5, 2017

D69 Southern Division Club officer training Dec 2017

Report by Ursula Beatty
HDB members enjoying the Club officer training at The Robina Community Centre:
Christine Lennon, Matasha Nuss (Incoming VPPR for 2018), Sarafina Zubovic (Area Director 2017-2018); Ursula Beatty (Outgoing VPPR and Incoming President 2018)  and Tom O'Sullivan (Sergeant at arms) 

It was very worthwhile attending the D69 southern division club officer training (COT) on Monday evening (December 4th) at the Robina community centre. We were all very grateful that the forecasted storms and torrential rain didn't  really eventuate. Plus, the M1 motorway, normally pretty congested during the afternoon/early evening, was a breeze with traffic flowing freely all the way from Brisbane. The venue was great too with plenty of parking.

D69 TLI Training officer, Carolyn Shaw did a wonderful job organising this event  from the catering of a light dinner to the training program itself.
Apart from the individual sessions for each club officer role, large group sessions were held in the main hall on topics such as risk management with Christine Lennon; Introduction to Zoom video conferencing with Graham Cairns;
plus most importantly for our clubs; an informative  Q & A session with the SD pathways guides on  how to get all members ready and excited to start the new pathways educational program  which officially starts this Wednesday, though most clubs I suspect will probably wait till the new year to really get started. Bring it on! 

In regard to the 'Zoom' video conferencing, it is interesting to note that some clubs are using this as part of their normal Face to face club meeting or  in specialised online TM clubs, as well as for committee meetings ,where some or all of the participants choose to connect in this way.
The future of toastmasters using the pathways educational programs and technology such as video conferencing is certainly exciting! 

Well done Carolyn and all of the trainers and helpers. 5 stars.

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Area 24 Conference: The Toastmasters games

Report by Ursula Beatty

The Toastmasters games: 'your journey to greatness'  was the theme for this years Area 24 conference and round 2 of the speech contests, held at HiRUM software solutions at Arundel on the Gold Coast on 21st October, 2017.

 Contestants and place getters from HDB at "The toastmasters games":
Ursula Beatty - 2nd place in Evaluation contest; Julie Anne Cantwell - Winner of the International contest and 3rd place in Humorous contest; Hannah Castelijn - 3rd place in  the International contest; Daniel Black - 2nd place in Humorous.

I really enjoyed the experience of competing at this level. It was a great day to connect with fellow toastmasters and coming third in the international speech competition was just a bonus.” Hannah Castelijn

HDB Members and contestants: Tom O'Sullivan, Ursula Beatty, Christine Lennon, Julie Anne Cantwell - winner of International contest, Daniel Black, Hannah Castelijn and Sarafina Zubovic

Speech contest results at a glance. 

Evaluation contest
Table Topics
1st – Linda Hardstaff
1st - Linda Hardstaff
1st – Julie Anne Cantwell
1st – Julie Schafer
2nd – Ursula Beatty
2nd - Judi Jacques
2nd – Judi Jacques
2nd – Daniel Black
3rd – Julia Schafer
3rd - Julia Schafer
3rd – Hannah Castelijn
3rd – Julie Anne Cantwell

"Ursula, Hannah, Daniel and myself competed in the Area 24 Conference speech contest. We all left with medals. We supported each other and gained so much from taking part in the competition. I will be going onto the next level in March so between now and then, I plan to work on the content of my speech and practice the delivery. The challenge of competing is both exciting and nerve wracking, however, like any speech in front of Toastmasters, the audience is interested and receptive and it is so reassuring looking out to those friendly faces. It is so valuable being involved in a contest and I recommend  it to all members.” Julie Anne Cantwell, President of HDB.

Evaluation contest test speaker: Emily Nagle (from Club Runaway 2000) delivered a  very humorous and enjoyable 5-7 min speech for the contestants to evaluate. Thank you Emily.

Evaluation contest Toastmaster, Christine Lennon with participants: Julie Schafer, Judi Jaques, Linda Hardstaff, Ursula Beatty and Hannah Castelijn.

Evaluation contest place getters: 3rd Place - Julia Schafer; 1st Place - Linda Hardstaff;  2nd Place - Ursula Beatty.

Table Topics contestants who answered the question:" It was meant to be a joke, however..."
Julie Anne Cantwell, Linda Hardstaff, Judi Jaques, Ursula Beatty and Julia Schafer

Table Topics contest toastmaster, Marty Haynes congratulates the place getters: 1st place - Linda Hardstaff, 2nd Place - Judi Jaques and  3rd place - Julia Schafer.

Conference Chair, Rachel Pleasant, thanks Guest Speaker, Neil Johnson for his keynote speech.
Neil  (Renowned Brisbane radio personality) both entertained and inspired us with stories of his own personal journey with it's  many trials and tribulations. Originally from Longreach, He has had a long and very interesting career in radio including talk back radio. He gave  some useful advice on how we can all "go for gold"  at these TM games and beyond.

Guest Speaker: Mark Hunter,  DTM and Toastmaster for 22 years. He shared with us his own inspiring journey to becoming the world champion of public speaking  in 2009. Although he reached the finals six times prior to winning, he believed his success was due to putting the time in to crafting and perfecting a winning speech, that was authentic and maintained his individuality and core values, without trying to copy what others winners have done before him.
Rachel Pleasant facilitated a lively and informative Q & A session with Mark following his speech.

International contest participants: Julie Anne Cantwell, Julia Vincent, Ian Garvie, Veronica Dunlop,  Hannah Castelijn and Judi Jaques.

International contest place getters: Judi Jaques - 2nd place; Julie Anne Cantwell - 1st place and Hannah Castelijn - 3rd place.

Humorous contest Toastmaster, Peter Jaques with participants: Daniel Black, Denise Ivory, Julia Schafer, Ian Garvie and Julie Anne Cantwell.

Conference chair, Rachel Pleasant (LHS) and contest toastmasters Peter Jaques (RHS) congratulate Humorous contest winner Julia Schafer ; Daniel Black - 2nd place and  Julie Anne Cantwell - 3rd place.
Humorous contest place getters: Julie Anne Cantwell - 3rd place; Julia Schafer  - 1st place and  Daniel Black - 2nd place.  

Sarafina Zubovic gives a  big thank you  to all of the people who helped organise and run this very successful conference and speech contest: "the toastmasters games".

You cannot have a speech contest without judges!  Well done and thank you to all of the judges for giving your time and energy to judge all of the contests. Chief Judge Ian Mc Larren with Judges: ? ; Marianne Geevers, Alana Beale, Mitch Drage, Teresa Brake, and Southern Division director Garry Jardine.

Area Director Sarafina Zubovic, congratulates and thanks Rachel Pleasant for her outstanding effort in organising and running this years conference: "The Toastmasters games". Well Done Rachel and Sarafina..

Also, well done to all the contestants and in particular to the HDB contestants who took out 5 medals (1 Gold, 2 silver & 2 bronze) and 1 winning perpetual trophy!  I wish Julie Anne Cantwell all the best in the 3rd round of the speech contests to be held in March 2018, as part of the  southern Division conference

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

HDB Members doubling up at the Nerang TM speech contest - Report by Ursula Beatty

Christine Lennon, the current president of Nerang Toastmasters club organised this year’s speech contest for the Nerang toastmasters club which was held on Tuesday evening – 26th September, at the Red cross rooms in Nerang. This is the usual venue for the Nerang toastmasters Clubs bi-weekly meetings.

Some of the Helensvale Daybreak Club (HDB) members went along to assist in the running of the contest. Sarafina Zubovic, area 24 director was one of the judges, Ian Garvie was the MC or contest toastmaster, Julie Anne Cantwell, HDB club president, was tally counter and SAA. I  was timer.

Julie Anne Cantwell, Sarafina Zubovic, Ursula Beatty and Christine Lennon

What happens when two TM clubs get together to run an event?
Some people may think it was double trouble or seeing double. Why? There were 2 Ian’s: Ian Garvie and Ian Mc Larren; 2 Ursula’s, both of us assisting as timers for the evening; 2 Julia's (Julia Schafer and Julia Vincent from Nerang TM) and 1 Julie Anne. We could have had 2 Hanna’s too if our membership officer, Hannah Castelijn came along. It may sound confusing, but it just added to the light hearted, enjoyable atmosphere of the evening.

Hannah Mitchell from Robina Sunrise club gave a very inspiring and motivating speech as the test speaker for the Evaluation contest. Well done Hannah!
A very enjoyable evening had by all. Thanks for the Invite Christine.
Also, congratulations  to the place getters from Nerang Toastmasters who will go forward to the next round of the contests to compete with our club's contestants and the other clubs at the Area 24 conference on the 21st October.  See you there!

 Lets try to get the pose right girls! Christine, Julie Anne, Sarafina and Ursula

For our assistance running the event, we received a lovely thank you card and  gift – a nice touch of appreciation from the Nerang Toastmasters Club President Christine Lennon.

Thursday, October 5, 2017

Pets: Theme for Meeting No: 745. by guest reporter Oliver Pidgeon

My Name is Oliver or "Ollie". This was my 3rd visit to Helensvale Daybreak Toastmasters Club over the years that my Mom has been a member. As usual, all the members and guests warmly welcomed me.
To be honest, I had no idea I was going to Toastmasters. I was planning to go back to bed after breakfast, when I was ushered into my Mom’s car. I resisted at first, thinking I was off to the hairdresser or something. I dislike going to the hairdresser, as I come out looking and feeling  pretty bare and vulnerable.
I am told that the many dreadlocks that I have been growing for the past year "do nothing for my good looks and they need to go".  I protest: "Isn't  there a hair removal cream or something you could use instead of a radical trip to the hairdresser?"  Thankfully, toastmasters is a much better place to go than the hairdresser! 
I loved todays theme: Pets, that the President Julie Anne chose. I consider myself a ‘cat person’ so was glad to be sitting next to a lovely lady called Aimee, who adores cats and a new guy called Ken, who also likes cats and who exclaimed that I was very big boy! That sounded funny coming from him as to me, he was a real giant!

There was a lot of hand clapping and laughter by everyone,  which at first, I found a bit noisy and nerve wracking, but then I relaxed and chilled out with this relaxed bunch of happy toastmasters. 
Daniel wrote a big word on the whiteboard “Anthropomorphic”. Everyone had trouble with that word, so it wasn't  just me; what it meant and especially  how to pronounce it! 
It means “Attribution of human motivation, characteristics, or behavior to inanimate objects, animals, or natural phenomena.”
Such as the way Animals are treated like they are humans. What’s so wrong with that? Cats  (and dogs) love to sit on the comfy sofa and eat delicious human food and be spoken nicely to by their human owner. I like Anthropomorphic! Dressing pets up in silly outfits, well that kind of anthropomorphism is just daft. 
Seriously, do people actually use big words like this? Big words are superfluous if you ask me.

There was a range of ages and equal numbers of boys (including me!) and girls at the meeting, so it was evenly balanced in that way. I liked that. 

There were two longer  "prepared" speeches. Christine did an inspirational type speech (A project from the story telling manual) while  Ian did a speech project from the special occasion manual - mastering the toast, where he spoke in praise of a club member: my Mom! 

Paul had the very important job of timing everyone. He used a small set of 'traffic lights' which look really cool when the lights come on. The red light means your time is up. 

Nicole and Mark evaluated these speakers. Evaluating means to give feedback in Toastmasters language. But hopefully in a kind, yet honest way. It doesn’t always come out that way though, but all toastmasters try to learn to become better at  giving and receiving  evaluations.

Now, over the years, I have had to listen to a lot of speeches by my Mom when she practices at home. It can be a bit tiring at times, but I have learned a great deal from it too.  For instance...
How to use vocal variety to enhance my presentation and get the desired outcome from my audience - usually just my parents. When I increase the  volume, rate and pitch of my voice, it nearly always works in getting what I want - which is usually my food!

Aimee led the impromptu speaking or table topics segment. Thankfully, she didn't call on me. Otherwise, I would have to be evaluated by my mom, Ursula, who was evaluating the table topics. She evaluates me enough at home... For instance, she says:  "that I have a very strong speaking voice, but that at times I can come across as way too demanding..." Whereas, I prefer to call it persuasive speaking!

It was interesting to hear some of the answers relating to the theme of Pets. Mark was very passionate about horses and that showed in his voice and with his gestures. Ken didn’t care much for Monkeys (I can’t say I blame him - Just stick with Cats Ken, I say), but he told a good story too. 
Nicole didn’t’ really agree with the statement: that Pets reduced depression or stress. She had everyone laughing with her answer, but I guess it wasn’t very funny for her when her dog did his business in her shoes and only her shoes! In my opinion, he was trying to tell you something Nicole, evaluating you perhaps, in his doggy way? (he should have gone to Toastmasters?) 

Later Sarafina evaluated the entire meeting but especially the evaluators or whomever wasn’t evaluated already. That's a very big job..

All in all a Purrfect ending to a Purrfect  meeting. By the way, its a shame that you have to be over 18 to join Toastmasters, other wise I would definitely like to join up. 

Aimee and "Ollie"

Saturday, September 30, 2017

Helensvale Daybreak TM Club speech contest 2017 - Report by Ursula Beatty

This years club speech contest was held in Christine Lennon's home in Nerang on Saturday 23rd September, 2017. It was an unusually hot spring day and Christine's Air Conditioner was very welcome. It was once again a very successful contest. Thanks to all the participants and  helpers and especially to Christine who organised and hosted the event. Well done.

Helensvale Daybreak club contest participants: Daniel Black, Sarafina Zubovic (Area 24 director), Hannah Castellijn, Julie Anne Cantwell, Ian Garvie and Ursula Beatty.

Contest MC Rod Dixon congratulates Humorous Speech Contest participants: Ian Garvie, Julie Anne Cantwell and Daniel Black.

 Daniel Black responds to MC, Rod Dixon's post contest interview questions, with Ian Garvie and Julie Anne Cantwell.

Humorous speech contest winners: 1st Place - Julie Anne Cantwell; 2nd place - Daniel Black.

Table Topics Contest participants: Ian Garvie, Julie Anne Cantwell, Daniel Black & Ursula Beatty

The Table topic question:  "I was driving along the motorway, when suddenly..."  had to be  answered in a  time of 1.5 to 2.5 mins. As the final participant, it was a weird feeling to come into the room, knowing that I was the only that did not know the question, until I was called up to the stage and given the question by Rod, the contest MC. 

Table Topics contest winners: 2nd Place Julie Anne Cantwell; 1st Place - Ursula Beatty

Ian Garvie and Daniel Black enjoy a chat over lunch

                                                     Sarafina and granddaughter Hannah

 Evaluation contest participants: Ursula Beatty, Ian Garvie and Hannah Castellijn.

Thanks to Colleen Carnes from Robina Sunrise TM club, who gave the 5 - 7 min test speech (for the evaluation contest). She wasn't fazed one bit by Pug and Emo (Christine's much-loved Pug and French bulldog) who were very keen to come into the room and observe her speech. They didn't seem interested in any of the other speeches!!

Evaluation contest winners: 1st place - Ursula Beatty; 2nd Place - Hannah Castellijn

 International Contest participants: Julie Anne Cantwell, Ian Garvie and Hannah Castellijn

International contest winners: 1st Place - Julie Anne Cantwell; 2nd Place - Hannah Castellijn 

Club President, Julie Anne Cantwell thanks the contest MC Rod Dixon for his participation and contribution to the success of this years speech contest.

Also a huge thanks to the contest judges: Ian Mc Larren, Mitch, Deniece and Tracey with Ian Garvie and Christine Lennon  (centre of photo) - contest organiser, tally counter, chef and host.
Missing from photo: Sarafina Zubovic who was timer for the contest with Colleen Cairnes. 

The  Area 24 conference and 2nd round of the speech contests will take place  on the 21st October in Arundel. See the upcoming events tab for more details. 1st and 2nd place getters will go through from our club to this contest. Best wishes to all. 

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Social Media and Negotiation - TM meetings in September - Report by Ursula Beatty

Themed meetings add variety and interest to our weekly meetings. The toastmaster or MC who leads the meeting  is responsible for selecting the theme for the day.
The following reports are from two club meetings in September with two different themes: Social Media and Negotiation.

Ian Garvie was the Toastmaster (MC) for the day. His chosen theme: Social media.

His  question for all of us: Is Social Media friend or Foe?

There were some very interesting answers to this question from the audience during our introduction of members section. 
Networking was the word of the day (WOD)– selected by Sarafina, who also gave a report on the WOD usage and grammarian report towards the end of the meeting.

Occasionally we have Debates related to the Theme of the day. The participants are required to speak for or against the motion regardless of their personal preferences!
Nicole led a debate with 2 motions. 1.  Is Social Media beneficial for society?  Ursula spoke in favour and  Aimee spoke against.   
2. Are Face book Friends better than real friends? debated by Ian (For) and Mark (Against). Both questions produced lively and entertaining answers.

Julie Anne gave a speech in preparation for the upcoming club speech contest.
A good selection of thought provoking Table Topics led by Mark Butler. For example “Is Social media heading in a positive or negative direction?”

Nicole answered the table topic: What is your favourite form of social media?: In Aimee’s evaluation of table topics, she noted that “Nicole  was like butter – very smooth!”  Another great quote Aimee!
In the evening, I 'happened' to  turn on the 612 ABC radio and there was a very interesting discussion and talk back  with a psychologist about  “Does Social Media and Facebook in particular,  make you sad and depressed?” It would appear that for many people, it does. What do you think?

Meeting No: 743. Sep 13th, 2017

An Excellent meeting today with a great vibe and very well run. 

Nicole Kelly was the Toastmaster (MC) for the day. Her chosen theme: Negotiation. 

Her question to all of us: What is your negotiation style?
[after first explaining the 5 different negotiation styles: 1. Competing Win/lose; 2. accommodating Lose/win;  3. compromising lose/win some: lose/win some;  4. collaborating win/win and 5. avoiding lose/lose] 
One of the Guests,  Cameron was at a  workshop on this very topic the previous day, so this was an easy question for him to answer.  I love how synchronicity is always at work at our TM meetings!

Nicole shared a great quote:  Money isn’t everything, but I would rather cry in a Mercedes than on a push bike!”
Hannah was the 1st speaker with a speech from the speaking to Inform manual about how to play the violin. She gave a very informative and interesting presentation, especially for those of us that have never played the violin. Julie Anne evaluated Hannah’s speech

Ursula was 2nd speaker with a speech project on using Vocal variety. A story about the highs and lows of her recent visits to an aged care facility  in Ireland.   
Christine evaluated this speech as well as the table topics questions with her usual expertise. She  demonstrated her excellent multi tasking and focusing  skills, despite the fact she has only been back in the country a few days after a long haul flight.  

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Music to my ears – Meeting # 733; 5th July 2017 – report by Ursula Beatty

Julie Anne Cantwell began the meeting in a rather unusual way for Toastmasters!  Strumming along with her ukulele, we were treated to a  sing along to the upbeat song: “You are my sunshine, my ray of sunshine…”. What a great way to warm up our voices and lift the energy of the meeting.  Nice one Julie Anne.
Julie Anne Cantwell: the multi talented singing, ukulele playing toastmaster, and Club president. 
Note: This report is on one of our weekly meetings. Most meetings have standard features such as a theme and introduction of members, impromptu speaking segment and 2 prepared speeches, as well as oral and written speech evaluations. The theme for this meeting was Music to my ears, chosen by the Toastmaster for the day:  Julie Anne. It was also her first day as president of the club.

The answers from the different members to the question: “What is your favourite musical piece?” in the “Introduction of members” segment was quite interesting and humorous. For instance, for one member, it was easier to identify the least favoured instrument:  the great big (and beautiful) Cello that is dutifully manoeuvred and ‘squeezed’ into the car, when it’s time for the son’s Cello lessons! What a fabulous instrument for a child to learn to play, even if it is a bit cumbersome.

The Table topics segment, led by Mark Butler and evaluated by Nicole, got the musical stories going.
Have you ever played a musical instrument?” was the question I was given, which brought me right back to my childhood (which doesn’t seem that long ago!) to the Limerick school of music, where my siblings and I were dragged along to Piano lessons and music theory classes. My mother believed that a child’s education was incomplete unless they learned to play a musical  instrument. Unfortunately, at the time, I didn’t agree! Although I liked playing the Piano (for enjoyment), I disliked the very strict, regimented Piano teacher and the terrifying practical exams: Playing a grand piano up on a huge stage; on my own, watched on by a handful of austere looking examiners, sitting below me in the huge concert hall. No wonder I needed to attend toastmaster’s years later!

Looking back, I was grateful to my parents for the opportunity, especially as we were not well off financially.  I can also agree with the old battle axe of a piano teacher, that I was wasting her time, and my parent’s money with my lack of motivation and regular practice!!

Paul answered the question: “What Instrument would you like to play?” describing the instruments he already plays – the Guitar and Ukulele and then moving on to talk about the keyboard he would like to learn to play.

Ian surprised us all when he was asked to “describe your favourite piece of music as he started singing Frank Sinatra’s “More…” “More than the greatest love the world has known. This is the love I give to you alone. More than the simple words I try to say. I only live to love you more each day… ; which he loves to sing to his wife. How sweet is that! Nicole, as the table topics evaluator, was unusually lost for words, not expecting to see this 'softer and romantic' side of Ian!  Well done Ian.
Aimee gave a wonderful speech "Judgement and understanding", about the way we tend to judge people and circumstances without really knowing what is going on for that person. She gave some examples of children behaving badly (her own and then seeing other people with their kids) and the parents not controlling or disciplining them as we think they ‘should’. Often, we just need to appreciate the ‘true’ stories behind the ‘unforgivable’ tantrums and the parents 'inappropriate' response. This speech was evaluated by Ian.

Hanna gave a very informative, well researched  and motivating speech about reducing, reusing and recycling, using excellent props and visual aids. She engaged the audience’s participation at the start of her speech with a quiz to see which “bin” (rubbish bin, Recycle or compost/waste bin) various household and garden items, food and its packaging should go in. I was very happy to evaluate this speech.
Paul gave a general evaluation of the whole meeting and then later, Julie Anne finished this very lively and interesting meeting with another singalong to her ukulele. Thank you Julie Anne, and best wishes with your term  as  club president.