Thurles Toastmasters is zooming into the future
Toastmasters is a world-wide organisation, founded to help people develop self-confidence and improve their speaking skills in a structured but very relaxed atmosphere.
Like most community based clubs, Thurles Toastmasters has had to adjust to life under lockdown.
That’s not easy when your very existence as a club depends on talking to, and interacting with, your fellow club members and friends.
Toastmasters is a world-wide organisation, founded to help people develop self-confidence and improve their speaking skills in a structured but very relaxed atmosphere. It is a well-known fact that fear of speaking before an audience is one of the top phobias among adults, not just in Ireland, but all around the world.
Toastmasters exists specifically to help people overcome that fear, and the Thurles club has been doing so successfully since 1987.
But the COVID-19 pandemic posed a problem. In the normal course of events, meetings are held in a relaxed social setting, where individuals can speak for a few minutes on a topic of their own choice. With a gradual building of confidence, the beginner can progress through the various stages of competency to the point where speaking to an audience becomes second nature.
Over the years Thurles members progressed to winning contests at local, national and international level, with one member went all the way to a world final on two occasions.
In their usual competent fashion, the club met the COVID challenge head on and commenced holding meetings through the medium of Zoom, and these have proven most enjoyable, even for those not accustomed to this modern method of communication.
The Club decided to continue meeting every fortnight through the summer just to keep in touch with each other and this has been welcomed by an active group.
When normal activity resumes later in the year, one of the major attractions of Toastmasters for anyone interested in joining the Club is the fact that there are no restrictions on people visiting a meeting just to see what goes on.
No matter the level of your confidence you will always be in the company of people who are willing to listen and offer constructive advice but they never criticise. You make a speech in your own time, at your own pace and only when you are good and ready.
From September to June, meetings are held on the first and third Wednesday of each month in Thurles, at 8.00 p.m.
In the meantime, if you would like more information, you can contact Mairéad at 087-2321217 or Tom at 086-8412505.