You may have seen that on the list of links on this page is one to Diamond Valley Toastmasters. Toastmasters clubs exist to develop the communication and leadership skills of their members. They offer training in giving presentations and conducting meetings, in an encouraging, supportive atmosphere. For those of you who know me, it may come as a surprise to you that I've been a member of the Diamond Valley Toastmasters club for just over three years, and have found it highly beneficial to my personal development. I also serve on the club executive as Vice President Public Relations. This involves compiling the club newsletter and promoting the club in the local community.
Our meetings are held on the first, third and fifth Monday evenings of each month, at Eltham Bowling Club. I had the privilege of officiating as Toastmaster at our last meeting on June 19. This role is conducted by a different person at each meeting, and involves introducing all the speakers and keeping proceedings running smoothly. In other words, acting as Master of Ceremonies.
One of the regular meeting segments is called Word of the Night. A member introduces a word, gives its definition, and briefly gives an example of how it might be used. Members are then challenged to use this word appropriately during the meeting. At the end of the night, an award is given to the person judged to have used it most effectively. The award winner gets to temporarily bask in the glory of their win for the two weeks until the next meeting, when it is passed on to the next recipient. This time I was the winner of the perpetual Word of the Night trophy. It takes pride of place on top of my bookcase, collecting dust with my other household artifacts. Although it must be returned, it's nice to receive tangible recognition for something occasionally.