The Birth and Growth of a Chartered Toastmasters Club
It was a cold February afternoon in 2010 when one of my coaching clients asked me to support her when attending a speaking club in Birmingham for the first time, as she hoped to improve her presence and confidence. I was happy to oblige and attended the club night at Bullring Speakers with her.
It was a friendly place and it was full of wonderful ordinary people. It seemed to have a nice balance of age, gender and nationalities. I remember enjoying the evening, and there were three speeches, three evaluations, a round of impromptu speaking and some evaluations of the meeting in general. It had a nice energy about it and on leaving we were advised that there was a club in our own town of Telford.
We sought it out and found a small band of 5 or so members trying to get the club going. I remember Alan Adams was the one trying to drive it forward. I have to thank Alan, because even though it dwindled further as personal and business commitments drew people away, it left me with an amazing opportunity. As the sole member I had a choice. Wrap it up or really go for it! I had attended an Area Training event for club officers with Tina Swani as the Area Governor, and she had used my dilemma as a project for the teams from all five clubs to work on in the training session. At the end of the meeting I had enough ideas and offers of support to feel that I should go for it!
To cut a long (3 year story) short, after a lot of support and guidance from Spa Speakers members (our sponsor club), and a lot of promotional evenings, leaflet dropping, advertising, building a website, and even going on BBC Radio Shropshire we were able to charter as we had achieved more than 20 members in March 2013. We celebrated with a posh dinner and the District Governor, Freddie Daniels and the Area Governor, John Cox joined us for the evening, which made it really special. It felt pretty awesome to receive our official banner with our club name on it.
From here on it was onwards and upwards!
Sam Warner, Get Your Message Across