The Prince Rupert Toastmasters Club meets every Tuesday and encourages newcomers to join them.

The Prince Rupert Toastmasters Club meets every Tuesday and encourages newcomers to join them.

The art of communication: Toastmasters Prince Rupert

The Prince Rupert Toastmasters Club has been active in the city for over 30 years

Communication is not often regarded as a skill that should be sharpened but a group in the city are encouraging people to meet once a week to engage in the art of speech.

Have you ever listened to a TED Talk that sends chills up your spine? Some of those superb orators learned their skills through the international Toastmasters program. A Prince Rupert has its own club that meets every week where members learn how to be a master speaker.

The Prince Rupert Toastmasters Club has been active in the city for over 30 years. The group shut down for a few years but on Jan. 13 the club celebrated its first anniversary after finding enough interest in the community to start again.

Daniela Cappelli manages the club’s public relations after joining last June. “Whatever your profession is it’s really important to be able to communicate,” she said. She considers the meetings a safe place where everyone else is going through the same thing — they all want to become better communicators.

Cappelli moved to Prince Rupert two years ago from Mexico. English is her second language and she normally considers herself introverted. As a new stay-at-home mom she said she looks forward to the meetings because it keeps her sharp for when she re-enters the workforce.

Anyone is welcome to join free of cost. Cappelli dropped into the meetings for two months before deciding to become a member. There are members between the ages of 18 and 75 with occupations ranging from nurses, teachers, mothers, politicians and students.

“It’s a rich group of people who are very respectful,” Cappelli said.

At the 90-minute meeting there are prepared speeches and table topics, or shorter unprepared speeches. After someone presents the group offers constructive criticism on how to improve.

The speeches follow a formula and participants learn how to structure their writing so that it becomes easier to prepare each time. The prepared speeches run between seven and 12 minutes.

The table topics aim to develop skills for delivering a short one to two-minute speech. The topic is chosen by the table talk master and once your name is called you respond right away with an on-the-spot speech.

Michael Gurney joined the club last February. He is already a communicator by profession at the Prince Rupert Port Authority but he decided to give it a try after the club’s president, Michal Sluka, urged him to join.

“It has been such a privilege to be among people earnestly eager to grow each week and open up to criticism,” Gurney said.

Both Gurney and Cappelli encourage newcomers to attend a meeting to learn what it is all about.

“Every community needs leaders and Toastmasters is a great site to practice becoming a leader,” Cappelli said.

The club offers relevant skills for leaders of volunteer societies, civic bodies or business professionals to run better meetings, learn how to structure their organization more efficiently and develop leadership capabilities that reflects on the city, Gurney said.

Toastmasters offers many more benefits. It’s a place to network with others in the community. There are different levels of certification for members and once a certain level has been achieved the organization can send a notice of certification to an employer or it can be added to a resume.

There are quite a few notable speechwriters and professionals who were Toastmasters. For example, Jon Favreau was only 27 when he became the director of speechwriting for President Barack Obama; Bill Bennett, was a former B.C. premier; and Leonard Nimroy, was the actor who played Spock on Star Trek.

A notable Toastmaster in Prince Rupert is city councillor Gurvinder Randhawa.

In its second year the club is introducing a mentorship program by pairing up with other clubs within the city to help out with speech training.

The group meets every Tuesday from 7:30 p.m. until 9 p.m. at the NorthWest Community College. Guests are always welcome and they don’t have to participate but are encouraged to try.

 

Just Posted

BC Ferries has announced the welcoming back onboard of recreational travellers on June 15 after the provincial travel restrictions were lifted. (Courtesy of BC Ferries)
BC Ferries welcomes back recreational passengers

The ferries corp will relax mask-wearing in outdoor spaces

Nic Pirillo received $1,000 Youth WORK Apprenticeship Award presented to him by Erik Brooke and Catlin Chandler of Broadwater Industries, in front of the boat Pirillo built in his free time using newly acquired skills. (Photo: supplied)
Learning and earning with apprenticeship

Nic Pirillo graduated in 2020 and was awarded the Youth WORK Trades award

According to the BC Centre of Disease Control epidemiology mapping from May 30 to June 5, there was an increase of one case in the Prince Rupert area after a three-week stability of no new cases. (Image: supplied BC CDC)
Prince Rupert second dose vaccination clinic to run from June 14 to July 9

Volunteers needed for P.R. immunization clinic, recipients must register and cases back up to one

Capt. Portugal was getting into the festive spirit out working for the City of Prince Rupert and celebrating Seafest 2021, on June 12. During regular business hours Capt. Portugal is known as David Costa. (Photo: K-J Millar/The Northern View)
Searching out fun in the sun for Seafest 44

Families and friends can participate in weekend COVID-19 friendly activities

Seafest is underway with a sunfest theme from June 11 to 13 in Prince Rupert. Alex Hoogendorn vice president of Prince Rupert Special Events is creating sunny times making feature for the decorating contest with his son Caleb Hoogendorn on June 4. (K-J Millar/The Northern View)
Seafest 44 plans a sunfest June 11 to 13 in Prince Rupert

All events in festival are COVID-19 safe, social distancing and health protocols approved by N.H.A.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau participates in a plenary session at the G7 Summit in Carbis Bay, England on Friday June 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada donating 13M surplus COVID-19 vaccine doses to poor countries

Trudeau says the government will pay for 87 million shots to be distributed to poor countries

Montreal Canadiens goaltender Carey Price (31) is scored on by Vegas Golden Knights defenseman Alec Martinez, not pictured, during the second period in Game 1 of an NHL hockey Stanley Cup semifinal playoff series Monday, June 14, 2021, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)
Habs fall 4-1 to Vegas Golden Knights in Game 1 of NHL semifinal series

Match was Montreal’s first game outside of Canada in 2021

Kelowna-Lake Country MLA Norm Letnick, assistant deputy speaker at the B.C. legislature, presides over committee discussions. The legislature is completing its delayed spring session this week, with most MLAs participating by video conference. (Hansard TV)
B.C.’s daily COVID-19 infections dip below 100 over weekend

Only 68 new cases recorded Monday, four additional deaths

The BC Ferries website went down for a short while Monday morning following a provincial announcement that recreational travel between health authorities can resume Tuesday. (Black Press Media file photo)
BC Ferries’ website crashes in wake of provincial reopening announcement

Website back up now, recreational travel between health regions to resume as of Tuesday

The Kamloops Indian Residential School is photographed using a drone in Kamloops, B.C., Monday, June, 14, 2021. The remains of 215 children were discovered buried near the former school earlier this month. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Communities grapple with what to do with former residential and day schools

Some tear them down as a tool to help healing, others repurpose them as tools for moving forward

FILE – Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry talks about B.C.’s plan to restart the province during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, Tuesday, May 25, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. watching U.K.’s COVID struggles but don’t think province will see similar pitfalls

Studies show that one dose of vaccine is only 33 per cent effective in preventing B.1.617.2 spread

RCMP Const. Shelby Patton is shown in this undated handout photo. RCMP say that Patton was hit by an allegedly stolen truck that he had pulled over on Saturday morning in Wolseley, east of Regina. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, RCMP
Pair charged in Saskatchewan Mountie’s death make first court appearance

Const. Shelby Patton was hit by an allegedly stolen truck that he had pulled over Saturday morning

David and Collet Stephan leave for a break during an appeal hearing in Calgary on Thursday, March 9, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Todd Korol
Appeal Court rejects stay for Alberta couple facing third trial in son’s death

Pair accused in their earlier trials of not seeking medical attention for their son sooner

Highway notices like this come down effective June 14. Public health restrictions on non-essential travel and commercial operation have hit local businesses in every corner of B.C. (B.C. government)
Province-wide travel back on in B.C.’s COVID-19 restart plan

Gathering changes include up to 50 people for outdoor events

Most Read