Meeting No.791 'Miracles'

This was our last meeting for 2017 and our first meeting with Pathways being operational (for less than 24 hours).
Sgt-at-Arms, David G. started the meeting spot on at 7:30 pm. Twelve members were present and a guest, Mark Xu, who has been in Australia only for a few months and who was member at a club in China.
Business Session was conducted with Chih D. in the chair, and matters at hand were moved expeditiously.
After a raft of program changes, Udana A. took control of the Educational Segment as Meeting Toastmaster.
Thought of the Day was presented by Daniel I. Word of the Day presented by Wendy P. was “snafu”, originally a military acronym for “situation normal, all fouled up”. The Word of the Day for this meeting was a real hit, as it was used profusely throughout the meeting.
The Round Robin, ably coordinated by Meeting TM, Udana A., was held around the meeting theme (miracles), and the question was “Do you believe in miracles?’
Peter K. followed with four fabulous Table Topics, also around the theme of “miracles”. Wendy P., DTM, evaluated the four respondents, praised them for their existing skills, and gave a common suggestion: when answering Table Topics the lectern is not needed, get rid of it, place at the back; this will allow you to do “full body” non-verbal communication with your audience.
After the tea break we resumed the meeting with a bang. Four speakers, including two icebreakers, a second and a seven speech!
Speaker #1 was Jinal M., and her icebreaker speech entitled “The Great Fight”. Jinal told us of her life in India, how being the eldest allowed her to “boss around” her sisters, and of her struggles to be able to go to a good secondary school, how to go to tertiary education, and how to win her parents to consent to her marriage to her chosen partner and not go into an arranged marriage.
Speeker #2 was Tayla H., with her icebreaker speech “My journey to Toastmasters”. Tayla told us of her love for her grandparents, of her puppy dog and pet chickens, but also how envy and greed hit her extended family. How all this affected her personal life and her health, and how now at age 22 and in her last year as a law student she has come to Toastmasters not just to develop her personal skills, but as a cathartic experience to make new friends and become a balanced person.
Speaker #3, doing only his second speech, was Greg Hynds. The title of his speech was “Jurisdiction over Terrorists”. Greg told us of the terrorist attack in a café in CBD Sydney in 2014 with two deaths and several injured. Some people, after the incident, wanted the military to become involved in dealing with terrorists. The rest of Greg’s powerful speech was about why this is not a good idea, and how the police are best suited to the task.
Speaker #4, doing speech 7, was Daniel B. and his speech title “Problems”. Daniel B. is a NLP practitioner and he used his knowledge to show us how some people know they have a “problem” and know what to do to overcome it, but don’t as they are afraid of losing their identity and the “secondary benefits” the get. He had a breakfast stool as visual aid. To the top of the class for innovation, as in my 20 plus years in Toastmasters this is the first time I have seen this.
Patty K was harkmaster, and she made it clear that no one should answer her questions but the persons nominated by her. Which is fair enough as we want all members to keep paying attention.
Wendy P, gave the report on WOD, and remarked how well the members had taken up “snafu”.
Stephen M. gave the Timer’s report, and following him David G. gave us his General Evaluation. David has been a member for several years now, and his experience can e seen by the quality of his reports.
The members present voted for Meeting 791 as Best Table Topic, Tayla H. (for the third meeting in a row!!); Best Evaluator, Stephen M. (for Tayla H’s icebreaker); and Best Speaker, Greg H. Congratulations Tayla, Stephen, and Greg!
We’ll now have out Festive Season recess and our next meeting will be on 17 January, the theme will be “tasks”.
Pathways is now operational for our club, and all members are reminded to go to, log in and go to Pathways to select your path and start your journey on this wonderful path.
See you all in January and may you all have a great festive season, surrounded by your families, friends, and people who appreciate and like you.

Daniel I.

Meeting No.790 'Enemies'

“Keep your friends close and your enemies closer.”

The theme of the meeting was “Enemies”, so the phrase above was presented as “Thought of the Day”. For those who wonder this phrase has been attributed to Chinese military genius, Sun Tzu (of The Art of War fame), and sometimes to Niccolo Machiavelli or Petrarch. However, according to my friend Wikiquote, there are no published sources yet found which predate its use by Michael Corleone in The Godfather Part II (1974): "My father taught me many things here. He taught me — keep your friends close but your enemies closer."

With such a theme, we managed to have a serious and fun meeting.

It all started at 7:31 when acting Sgt-at-Arms, Chih opened the meeting and promptly handed the reins to Business Session Chair, Udana. In addition to handle the administrative aspects of the life of the club, the Business Session is the segment where members can learn how to chair a meeting, how to submit motions, etc. All members will get a chance at having a go at this activity.

Chariman Udana welcomed members, and guests Tania and Ali, and also former member and friend Arun R to the meeting, and expeditiously moved through the agenda, and then gave control to Meeting Toastmaster, Patti K.

Patti, with her usual affability, quickly brought us to the Round Robin, the opportunity to introduce ourselves to the club and quickly reveal something about ourselves.

Thought of the day, shown at the heading, was delivered by Greg H. Next, Daniel I presented the Word of the Day, which happened to be Word of the Yeara 2017: complicit.

Peter K had his chance to present Table Topics for the first time. He had five questions around the meeting’s theme, all well researched, and even quoting the Bible.

Arun R evaluated the Table Topics, and every speaker was not only built up but also received helpful hints on how to take it up another notch.

After the tea/coffe break break, club president Udana A inducted into the club new members Tayla Harrison and Jinal Makawana. I always get a great deal of pleasure in welcoming new members, and, as a father of two daughters, even more so when they are young and female. Welcome Tayla and Jinal. You have come at our club at a very exciting time, when we’re just about to embark in Pathways, the new and vastly improved educational system. May you get every thing you need from Toastmasters.

There were only two speakers for the night, and one was impromptu.

One of the many reasons why I am a Toastmasters addict is because I keep being surprised by people. I’ve met Wendy P, DTM, around 1994 at a Toastmaster convention. I joined Werribee in February 2013 and since then I had numerous occasions to see Wendy in action. We all know she’s a gold-class evaluator. But I never suspected she was what we in Australia call a “petrol head” (i.e., a lover of automobiles and car racing). Her speech was about being the proud owner of an Alfa Romeo car, and how being member of the Alfa Romeo Owners Club gave her opportunity to go around many racing circuits, including Philip Island, Sundown, and others, with Winton being her favourite. Congratulations Wendy for living your life to the full, and for sharing those precious moments with us all.

Second speaker was yours truly. This was an impromptu speech due to the cancellation of other speakers. Unfortunately I could not make it fit into a manual speech, as I didn’t even had manuals with me. (It’s important to always speak from a manual and advance towards your goals.) I tried to make it a bit of an educational speech, and I spoke about some tips for powerful evaluations. I would have liked to prepare better, but noticing how some members were taking notes, I think it was well received.

Tayla H (harkmaster), Daniel I (word of the day), Jinal (Ah-counter) and Ramya/Arun (timekeepers) were in charge of the minor reports.

Patti K has recently joined our club, after a long membership in Bribie Island Club in Distirct 69. Every club has its own personality and traditions, which are neither better or worse, but simply

different. In this case, Patti, in her role as Meeting Toastmaster, asked the timekeeper to inform the meeting of the times taken after the table topics, after the speeches, and after the evaluation. Then at the end of the meeting the timekeeper can report in other aspects such as starting the meeting on time, etc.

By asking for the times of the different kind of speakers to be given at the end of the segment, the evaluators can use this information if needed, and the members can use it to decide our votes on Best Table Topic, Best Evaluator, and Best Speaker. When it is your turn to be Meeting Toastmaster, you may like to do this as well.

The meeting closed at 9:32 pm. As this meeting was on the fifth Wednesday of the month, our next meeting is only a few days away, on 7 December. Hope to see all the seats taken for our last meeting of 2017.

Some news that came at hand after the meeting. Bunnings have cancelled our Sausage Sizzle date and given it to another organisation. Reasons are not clear to me at this stage, but its important that members know they will now not be needed to staff the stand on Sunday 10 December.

Looking forward to seeing you all next Wednesday.

Daniel I.
Werribee Toastmasters VPPR

Meeting No.789 'Truth'

As is often the case in meetings towards the end of the year, there were many apologies. And as usual, we still had an educational, entertaining and fun meeting, under the theme “Truth”. With such a powerful theme, all members and guests present committed to “tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth” (unless, of course, it gets on the way of a good yarn!)
Meeting 789 was called to order at 7:30 pm sharp by Sgt at Arms. On the Chair was Daniel I. Some important items were presented to the meeting for the attention of the members.
Guests at the meeting were Tayla and Shridhar.
Club Treasurer, Peter K. presented his report, including Profit and Loss Statement from 1 July to 11 November. Cash at the bank is currently $2539.10.
Cub VPE, Chih D. informed the meeting that club President Udana A. had sent a letter to Victoria University Chancellor regarding our hire of University room for club meetings. In this letter we presented three proposals to VUT to get rooms for free and some quid pro quo from the club. VUT has acknowledged receipt of the letter and will get back to us.
Sgt at Arms, David G. informed the meeting that VUT had answered our separate inquiry about the cost of rooms for 2018, and hiring for a financial year instead of the calendar year. VUT responded that hire to end of June 2018 would be $1200, and another $1300 for the second part of the year.
Vice President Public Relations, Daniel I. informed the club that all District and Club officials had received an email form TMI Headquarters confirming that we’ll be online with Pathways in December, although no exact date was mentioned.
At the end of the Business Session control was handed over to Meeting Toastmaster Jacqueline B., who had previously accepted to step into the role after the scheduled Meeting Toastmaster presented her apology. Thank you, Jacqueline, for stepping in, and for your warmth doing the task.
Heman A. was Table Topics Master and all his questions were around the meeting’s theme — Truth. The topics were interesting and allowed the respondents display their knowledge and opinions.
The topics were evaluated by Wendy P., DTM who added something of value to each respondent, and a general message: when answering a Table Topic, get rid of the lectern as you don’t need it to hold notes; this will remove a barrier between you and the audience.
After the tea break, we were treated to three interesting and well delivered speeches.
First, Chih D. spoke on “Crypto currency”, the new and mysterious (for us codgers) digital assets. He explained their genesis, how they can be used, what is a “digital wallet” and several other interesting facts.
Second, Peter K. presented his 8th speech, “It’s ok to be posh” about the importance and relevance of having good manners in life.
Third and the last speaker was David G, who spoke from one of the advanced manuals. The title of his speech was “It will be all right” and it dealt with the scaremongering perpetrated on the public by the media, presenting and showing us all the negative things happening in the world. David contention is that despite all the negativity of the media, we are all right.
Our guest Tayla accepted to fill the role of Harkmaster, the checker of how well we pay attention during the meeting. She had 6 questions and caught some of us unawares, all of them delivered with a wide smile.
The Harkmaster was Patty K. She briefly and efficiently notified us of all those “noises” which do not add any meaning. She noted that some of us have a decided preference for “ums” while others have it for “ehrs”.
Greg H. was in charge of the timekeeping, a job he did with military precision.
As we had so many apologies, we could not have a General Evaluator, so we did instead a “round robin general evaluation”. It turned out to be “good different”, to paraphrase the Aldi commercial.
Daniel I.
Werribee Toastmasters VPPR

Meeting No.788 'Friendship'

John Donne’s 1624 poem reminded us all that “no man is an island”, and we are all part of life. And life happens and we often have to change our plans. For the club this means we often cannot assist to meetings and we give our apologies. When apologies are on the last day, this means we cannot find replacement for speaking roles. As a result, speaking opportunities go begging and we all miss out. Individual members miss on an opportunity to advance on their goals, the club misses opportunities of learning by not being able to listen to the speakers.
Please look at the forward program and see what roles you have been scheduled for in the upcoming three meetings. If for any reason you find you cannot fulfil a role, please give the VPE the most notice you find so he can find a replacement easily and without fuss.
Meeting 678 started at 7:34 pm. Daniel I. stepped in as Chair, and went through the agenda quickly.
There were a few apologies, as usual, and our industrious VPE, Chih D., handled the program changes without fuss and efficiently. Chih cover the role of Table Topics Master, Venky covered the Table Topics Evaluation, and Greg H. became Harkmaster.
Three guests were present at the meeting, Taylor, Ash, and Jinal.
The meeting was informed that on Saturday 28 October the Area Contests were held at Geelong. Our club was well represented with contestants, officials, and supporters. We are happy to inform that Werribee Toastmasters representatives won three of the four contests on the day. Our congratulations to Venky S. for winning the Humorous and International Contests, and Greg H. for winning the Table Topics Contest. The evaluation contest was won by Vince C. of Aerospeakers Toastmasters. They will all compete now on Northern Division contest next February in Bendigo. If they win in Bendigo, they will go to the District Finals at convention in May 2018
Toastmaster for the meeting was Carol M., the theme of the meeting was friendship, and word of the day was concord.
This was her first time as Meeting Toastmaster, but Carol took to it like a fish takes to water. With her friendly smile and demeanour she moved us through the segments with ease and warmth.
Table Topics was conducted by Chih, and all questions were around the meeting’s theme — friendship. The topics were challenging, but not too hard, allowing a wide range of opinions and experiences to be expressed.
Venky S. gave his evaluation of the five topics, and gave plenty of praise but also demonstrated how the speakers could do better.
After the coffee break, the first speaker was Patty K. Patty is our newest member but she is also very experienced, having just transferred her membership from District 69 in Queensland. She is doing the CC manual again and gave speech 4 from the said manual. This was a very emotional speech, not just for Patty but also for us the audience. Patty spoke about her first face to face conversation with her birth mother at a hospital bed in Geelong. You could hear a pin drop.
Second and last speaker was Peter K. with his 6th speech from the CC Manual. Peter is qucikly advancing through his speeches and his improvement is noticeable every time. Peter quoted a series of well-known phrase and saying and told us how we can make use of this wisdom to improve our lives.
Patty and Peter’s speeches were evaluated by Udana A. and Shridhar P. Both of them built up the speakers and offered and demonstrated suggestions of things they may do in the future.
I call the “watchdogs” to those minor (in time) but crucial roles in each meeting. The Harkmaster, checker of how well we pay attention; the Ah-counter (aka “gruntmaster”, counter of all ungrammatical sounds; the grammarian who presents word of the day report and checks for poor and also colourful use of the language; and the timekeeper, who checks we use the time wisely and appropriately.
Greg H. was the Harkmaster; Ah-counter, Bruce B.; Grammarian, David G.; Timekeeper Heman A. They all presented their reports in a friendly and efficient manner.
There was no award for the best speaker as there were only two. Best Table Topic went to Greg H. (he just kept on from winning the Area Contest!). Best Evaluator went to Shridhar P.
Before closing the meeting, club President Udana A. briefly reminded us how fortunate is our club of counting among its members a Charter Member. Charter Member is one who was a member at the time the club was Chartered, i.e., officially recognised as a Club by TMI. And the member who was there that day over 30 years ago when our club was welcomed to the fold of Toastmasters is none other than Bruce Bedson.
Before the meeting closed, our guests Jinal and Ash expressed their intention of joining the club. Jinal, Ash, we’ll be thrilled to count you on our ranks.
And also there was a reminder of not one but two “Sausage Sizzles”.
The first “Sausage Sizzle” is an end of year social gathering for all members plus one, on Saturday 9 December, at Daniel I’s place, 26 Tandarra Drive, Hoppers Crossing. The host will provide sausages, bread, soft drinks and some salads. Guests are to bring a plate of food to share plus any other drink they wish to imbibe. RSVP to the host by the meeting on Wednesday 6 December.
The second “Sausage Sizzle” is a club fundraiser and it will be held at Bunnings Warehouse, Werribee, on Sunday 10:00 am to 5:00 pm. All members are encouraged to give a hand for a couple of hours on the day. Coordinator for this event is Paul von H.
Toastmasters International’s new educational program, Pathways, is being implemented in our District as of December. All members are encouraged to take advantage of this interlude to become familiar with Pathways and getting ready.
I must confess, I am too excited and cannot wait to get my hands on the new material and get started.

Daniel I.
Werribee Toastmasters VPPR

Werribee TM came first in three out of four contests in area level

Yesterday I went to the area contest, to support the members of  Werribee Toastmasters who are participating at the second level of the competition. I was quite happy to see, close to half of the active Werribee Toastmasters at the Geelong Area Contest. It was a great opportunity for our members to contest in area level with other Toastmasters clubs in the Area. I was very glad to be there and listen to a very talented bunch of Toastmasters from the area.

Werribee came first on three out of four contests
Humorous Speech Contest - Venky S.
Table Topics Speech Contest - Greg H.
International Speech Contest - Venky S.

I'm proud of all our contest participants (Venky S, Wendy P, Julie W, Carol M, David G) and our members who were doing official roles and helping the event to be a success. Our Area director Debbie Horoba did an excellent job to make the event a success.

Udana A.

Werribee Toastmasters Inc

Meeting No.787 'Pathways Presentation'

A truncated but interesting meeting this week due to Paul and Liz giving us a second presentation on Pathways. the new personal training direction of Toastmasters.
Our Toastmaster for the evening Julie W summed it up beautifully in her closing segment by saying (and I’m paraphrasing here) “we are all resistant to change but change is inevitable. The Pathways program delivers lots more individual choice and opportunity, but it will take time for us to absorb and appreciate. In ten years’ time, we will be saying ‘how ever did we manage with the old manual/catalogue system”.
Words of wisdom Julie and thank you for summarising the Pathways challenge so concisely.

Two Speakers only this week and both Speakers giving their Icebreaker speeches.
Although it may be said that the Icebreaker is the toughest speech (because it is the First) I sometimes think it is the easiest because, because essentially it is about our life ie; where and when we were born, how we transitioned through life and what our aspirations are.

Stuart and Heman both exhibited confidence in delivering their Icebreakers and both were effectively evaluated by Wendy P and David G .  Both Evaluators delivered well earnt praise as well as in sight-full advice for future improvement.
Congratulations to Stuart and Heman for taking an important first step in your Toastmasters journey. You should both feel well pleased on your performances. Good luck for the future.

We welcomed four guests Tayla H, her mother Angela H, Jinal M, Arun J as well as Hirav P a previous Guest and who signed-up for membership. Hirav was accompanied by his father (sorry I did not get his name) who is visiting from India. Congratulations Hirav for taking that important first step in transitioning from Guest to new member.

To our Guests for the night, can I suggest that you attend our next meeting (1St November) in order to get a truer experience of what Werribee Toastmasters has to offer.
I think it fair to say that the attendance level on Wednesday was an indication of the strength and functionability of Werribee Toastmasters. We look forward to your future involvement and the opportunity to help you progress in public speaking and personal confidence levels.

Toastmaster Julie commenced the meeting by asking us to consider a single but beautiful yellow rose which she brought to the meeting. I must admit to being non-plussed as to the significance of this item. At the conclusion of the meeting Julie explained the personal significance of the rose in relation to her and her mother’s recent life journey. Wendy P also advised that the rose was indeed a Freedom Rose that has meaningful connections to the end of WW2.
It’s amazing, but not surprising, the stories that one simple but beautiful rose can evoke, Thank you Julie and Wendy.

In summary, a well-attended meeting, but one that diversified from our normal meetings.

Paul von Harder
VP Membership

“Werribee Toastmasters is not a destination, it is a journey to be enjoyed”

Three events to diarise:
1) The Area Speech Contest
Sunday 28 October
Holy Spirit Hall
Cnr Narmbool St & Bostock Avenue
Manifold Heights, Vic 3215
10am – 3.00 pm (followed by the Area Council Meeting)
Lunch options:
$5 per person share in a subway platter, confirmation payment on arrival for delivery
BYO Lunch or there are a few takeaway venues in area. 
2) Our end of year Club BBQ
Held Sat 9th December at Daniel’s home
3) An all-important Bunnings Sausage Sizzle fund raiser to be held at Bunnings Warehouse, Cherry Street, Werribee on Sunday 10th December.
All members are asked to help-out for at least a couple of hours. It’s fun, easy and of course financially rewarding to our Club revenue. The day will commence at 8.00am and conclude at 4.00 pm.
Please contact Paul von Harder to advise your availability (Email and Phone number can be found on Meeting Agenda printouts.)

May Wilson's Toastmaster Journey 1994 to 2017

I am a very shy person. In early 1994 Debbie (my daughter) asked me what I would like to do with my life. To which I replied, that I would like to do something in public speaking. Debbie nodded and said "Leave it with me." A few days later she returned with a contact number for me to ring. The first Toastmaster I spoke to was Lorraine Margerison from Werribee toastmasters. Lorraine gave me the meeting evenings, times and the length of the meetings, and where they were held. She encouraged me to attend the next meeting.

April 1994 was the first meeting I attended it was held at the Werribee Community Aged Care Home (Old Werribee Hospital) in Synnot Street Werribee. This was an interesting venue, we were sometimes visited by the elderly residents who would wander in and then leave after a while. Bruce Bedson evaluated my Icebreaker. Bruce calmed my fears, I was sure my terror was obvious during the speech, but Bruce said no. The club was supportive and very friendly; I gained confidence as I worked through my 1st 10 speeches. I was overawed when I achieved my 1st Competent Toastmaster. I would never have believed that I could do such a thing. My elation was increased some weeks later when I received a Competent Toastmaster Certificate from America. I had never achieved a certificate for anything in my life. In 1996 I was VPE then in 1997 I became President. In 1997 I was Area Governor for N3, for which I received a District Gold Elite Award for Leadership and Administration.

May Wilson induction, 2nd Feb 1994, Meeting 158

In about February 1997 Tom Boon asked me if I would be the Semi-annual Convention Chairman to be held in the August. With absolutely no experience in this field I lead an executive made up of members from Werribee, Williamstown and Footscray Skyline. 'Flying High' semi annual convention was held at Tullamarine airport in the Hotel that is there. The flying theme was carried right through the weekend. Ross Whittingham Chaired the Table topics as flight steward. We needed a key note speaker, someone suggested Suzy Maroney a marathon swimmer who had a swim school in North Footscray. I rang Suzy and asked her if she would be our keynote speaker, we discussed her charges for being our speaker, (Suzy could charge a large amount of money at this time). I explained the non profit status of Toastmasters and she agreed to get back to me. Suzy rang me a few days later and agreed to speak at the convention for $500. I was over the moon. Suzy was perfect she left the audience wanting more and feeling inspired. Just what we needed in a keynote speaker. The Convention was a great success. In 1998 Wendy Powell who was working at Footscray Council discovered a pamphlet about the hotel that was proposed to be built as part of the Werribee Mansion and was due to open early in 2001. A wonderful place for a Semi Annual Convention. A great idea was born. I made an offer to hold the Semi annual in Werribee at the Lilydale convention late in 1998 and a video promotion at the South Australian convention followed in early 1999. The building of the hotel still had not begun, although by the end of 1999 the building had begun. And still Toastmasters still did not about any of this.

Once again I was Chairman of the convention committee. Wendy and I kept the committee informed of the building progress and things were going very well. A booking was duly made.

The hotel was about 6 weeks old when the Convention was held in August it had opened in mid June. When May stood up and told the story when welcoming toastmasters to the Werribee convention on the Friday night, an audible gasp swept across the audience. Werribee members ran every aspect of the convention and excelled themselves. Every member grew in confidence that weekend. I was very proud to be a Werribee Toastmaster. Ross Whittingham who had achieved DTM in early 1999 suggested I apply for my DTM as I had completed all the requirements. I duly applied and was awarded my DTM in April 1999.

October, 2017

During my journey I was involved in the sponsoring and mentoring of 3 new Toastmaster clubs Williamstown North, Melbourne and Filoz. Both North Melbourne and Williamstown are still working, unfortunately Filoz closed in 2007. I am very proud of my Toastmaster achievements. Wendy tells me that I can now talk under water though I still feel shy, I now have the confidence to speak out when needed. I enjoy working with the students at Westbourne Grammar which has been running for 19 years and Seaholme Primary which has been running since 2000. I thank Toastmasters for taking me on this wonderful journey and the wonderful toastmasters I have met and worked with on the way.

May Wilson, DTM
October, 2017


Meeting No.786 'Books'

Now the club has finished all contests for the year and found our champions to represent us at area level at the end of the month, We went back to “normal” on meeting 786 to our full on educational program.
Although we had a few apologies, other members readily stepped up to cover for the roles left vacant by the absentees.
Our heartfelt thanks go to these members for taking up a role at a moment’s notice: Chih D., Meeting Toastmaster; Carol M., Sargent-at-arms, Word of the Day/Grammarian y Ah-counter (and this on top of her scheduled role as Table Topics Master!); Udana A., speaker; Patti K., timer and speech evaluator, Daniel I., evaluator.
Peter K. chaired the Business Session. Although it was his first time, he carried out the job with aplomb and efficiency. He gave a warm welcome to our guests for the evening, Afrasa and Ash.
The theme of the meeting was Books, and the quote of the week in the program was by Frank Zappa: “So many books, so little time.” I’m sure that Frank made this statement thinking of me!
With this theme, our affable Topic Master, Carol M. had all questions on books. Respondents were Stuart C., Heman A, and guests Afrasa and Ash. Best Table Topic for the night went to our guest Ash, who out-staged all other contestants with his description of the joy he feels when going to the library.
The Topics were ably evaluated by Julie W., who not only praised the respondents for their efforts and their good qualities but also managed to give them good feedback on how to go even better.

President inducting new members

After the tea break, the meeting resumed, and the first item was the induction of three new members: Stuart C., Heman A, and Patti K. Patti is an advanced toastmaster — ACB, ALB — who transferred her membership from District 69. Welcome to Werribee Toastmasters Stuart C., Heman A, and Patti K. We wish you lots of improvement and we look forward to your contributions to our club.
After the inductions, we had two powerful speeches.
Greg H., with humour and panache, gave his Icebreaker about his life in the Army, his role as a civilian contractor and why his mates knew him as Red.
Udana A., now approaching his CC accomplishment, gave a powerful speech on why all members should “subscribe” to the club’s website in order to receive news and other important relevant information.
Because we had only two speakers, no vote was taken on Best Speaker for the night.
The speeches were evaluated respectively by Daniel I. and Patti K. Both acknowledged the strong points present in the speakers’ present ability and also offered them information on how to advance another notch.
We did have a vote for the best evaluator, as we had three. This evening the best evaluator was Patti K. Congratulations Patti!
Daniel I., harkmaster; Carol M., grammarian, word of the day, and ah-counter; and Patti K., timer presented their reports efficiently and ably.
Finally, Immediate Past-President Elena M. presented the General Evaluation. Thank you, Elena, for reminding me I need to smile more. The highlight of Elena’s general evaluation was her comparing the lectern to the Olympic Torch. The Olympic Torch must be attended at all times. When the Torch-bearer relays the torch to another member, he or she is handing all the symbolic power of the Torch to the next person. And so is with the lectern. The lectern is the symbol of who is in charge of the meeting. And when a speaker needs to leave the speaking area, they need to hand control to the next person. The best way to do this is with a powerful handshake.
Thank you, Elena, for reminding us of this important aspect of the meeting, and your wonderful analogy with the Olympic Torch.
Before breaking up, we were reminded that we have a one-hour training session about the new Pathways program scheduled for next meeting on 18 October. Unfortunately, District has not been able to confirm the date yet. So, all members need to be prepared for a different meeting, with over half of it spent on training for Pathways.

Five Presidents, Udana 2017; Wendy 2000, 2011, 2012; Elena 2016; May 1996, 2005, 2006; Daniel 2014

30 years of Werribee Toastmasters Gavel & Gab

In 1987 Bruce Bedson would never have imagined that he would still be looking forward to attending Toastmaster meetings in September 2017. Congratulations Bruce our longest serving member. Thirty years is a long time to have remained a member of any club. Werribee Toastmasters value your knowledge and history of Werribee Toastmasters. I will touch on 3 aspects of Werribee Toastmasters. Youth Leadership, Conventions and Members. Youth Leadership In 1997 VPE Audrey Selley organised to run a Youth Leadership course at Westbourne Grammar for 15 senior students. 2017 is the twentieth year that this course has been running. During the last 20 years many members of Werribee Toastmasters have presented Educationals or run the course.

Over the past 20 years Werribee has also presented Youth Leadership Courses at - The Grange S.C., Hoppers Crossing S.C., Emmanuel College and Laverton S.C. Currently May Wilson and I are working with the grade 5 and 6's at Seaholme Primary School. May has run this course with numerous assistants 2000, I have been assisting since 2006. Youth Leadership is another way in which Werribee members can grow and also serve the community. Semi Annual Conventions Both the Tullamarine and the Werribee Mansion conventions could not have been held without the hard work and input from the members of Werribee.

Tullamarine convention was an Area event, the Werribee Mansion convention relied on the members from Werribee. Werribee members introduced the workshop presenters, manned the registration desk, chaired the sessions in the main hall, introduced the key note speakers. Werribee members made sure that the rooms were ready and any props needed were in place. Sandy Cooper drove a mini bus collecting people from a neighbouring motels and taking people to and from the station. We had members who found sponsors for the convention, chased up donations in kind and in cash. Werribee Toastmasters were on show that weekend and came up roses. Members The members of Werribee are the life blood of the club. People come and people go and this is how it should be. Toastmasters is for the individual. It is the members of the club who encourage and support the new members as they work through the first 10 speeches in the Communication and Leadership manual. If you want to gain the confidence to speak up at the union meeting or to speak at your sports presentation dinner that is fine, we will welcome you to join Toastmasters. We also wish you well when you achieve your aims and you leave. Toastmasters is where you learn public speaking skills and practice them. Toastmasters actually needs a constant influx of new members and subsequently the new ideas they bring, to keep the momentum flowing. As I have said Toastmasters is a moving feast. Every meeting provides a feast for the brain.

Wendy Powell, DTM
September, 2017