There has been so much preparation for the Miss Teen Canada World pageant, I can’t believe I leave in 4 days! There have been appearances, fundraising activities, a lot of planning, and numerous blog posts. All bringing us closer to the pageant. I have learned so much and have really enjoyed representing my Miss Teen Southern British Columbia World 2013 title. It has been an honor sharing about MTCW, the wonderful charity Free the Children, and promoting my platform “Children in Care”. Raising awareness in my community of the impact youth can have as global citizens and youth role models. It has been important for me to be able to show that as youth we can and have awareness on critical issues and contribute and give voice from a youth perspective.
I wanted to share with you an amazing organization that has been helped me develop my voice. I was first introduced to Toastmasters as a candidate for the Miss Osoyoos Pageant. I was very shy at fifteen and public speaking made me very nervous. Once a week for over four months I attended toastmasters. Each week we were given the opportunity to learn communication skills and leadership projects designed to help us learn the arts of speaking, listening, and thinking. Each week we were given a “Table Topic” which is similar to a impromptu question, we were given 30 seconds to give an answer. We also held a speech contest at every meeting. We learned how to filter words like um, and, awe, which often are distracting to the audience. They also gave feedback on our speeches.
Today I am still a member of toastmasters and have polished up on some of the learning. I was given an opportunity to practice public speaking again in preparation for some of my upcoming presentations. Toastmaster has really helped me become more confident with public speaking. I give multiple hour long presentations at work and speak in front of hundreds of people each year. I can’t believe I was once so shy, toastmasters has really helped me push through the fears of speaking publicly.
I would recommend Toastmasters to everyone, not only those who are shy. I have learned life long skills through toastmasters that I will take with me into my all aspects of my life.
Toastmasters International is a nonprofit educational organization that operates clubs worldwide for the purpose of helping members improve their communication, public speaking and leadership skills. Wikipedia
Hope to see you in Toronto!
Shelby Lepage xoxo