Pax Earth Nepal organised its Vol. 2, No. 2 Toastmasters (TM) Program at its Secretariat, Pashupati, Kathmandu on Tuesday May 17, 2011 after 3 months gap. The TM Program was lasted exactly one hour, i.e. from 6.30PM to 7.30PM. PEN was very fortunate to have 16 participants in this TM.

President Sujan Koirala warmly welcomed honorary member Nilambar Badal, guests Rajan Dulal, Anita Subedi, Prashant Subedi, Deg Raj Lamsal, Sujita Ghimire, Pratik Ghimire, Suraj Duwadi, Deepa Acharya and PEN members Manohar Sapkota, Shreebatsa Basnyat, Harihar Sapkota, Binod P. Mainali, Bijaya Thapa and Sudarsan Risal. He, then, introduced the Toastmasters of the Day (TMD) Manohar Sapkota and handed the session to him.

TMD Sapkota revealed the theme of the day: “Youths and Social Networks” and gave reasons for choosing the theme. He briefly stated the objectives of holding TM Program and also explained the rules and procedures as many participants were attending for the first time. He, then, introduced the evaluation committee members: Binod P. Mainali in the role of grammarian, Shreebatsa Basnyat as Ah Counter, Sudarsan Risal as Timer and Sujan Koirala as General Evaluator.

TMD Sapkota introduced manual speakers, Bijaya Thapa and Harihar Sapkota, both were on their second projects and were speaking on the topic: “Youths and Online Social Network”. Each speaker was given 5-7min to deliver his speech. Thapa started his speech with the introduction of online social network. He said, “Youths are the backbone of the country and they should see positive aspects of online social networks and get benefit from them and avoid negative attractions.” He ended his speech with the concluding note, “The youths should use it at right time with right purpose rather than wasting the productive time sitting in front of computer chatting, checking and commenting in the wall posts.”

Second manual speaker of the day Harihar Sapkota started his speech with a brief history of online social network. He spoke about Hi-Five, Facebook, My Space and Twitter. The online social network helps to build and enhance relationship with friends. He said, “We can’t imagine social network without youths and youths without social networks. It is a room for universal news and activities. Youths like us can get education, knowledge, information. Further, it provides a platform for getting life partner too. So, youths should use online social networks carefully because it can be both boon and curse.”

After the manual speaking session, TMD Sapkota who was also assuming the role of Table Topic Master conducted table topic session. He gave three spot topics and picked three speakers among the participants. Each speaker in table topic session was given 3min for his/her speech. Nilambar Badal was picked for the topic: “Online Social Network and My Life”. He introduced his speech with a background how social network started. He added an important online social network in addition to the name taken by manual speaker Sapkota i.e. YouTube. He also shared that there has been many cases of misuse of proxy users. He shared a recent crime of Dharan which was occurred with the use of an online social network. He told, “People comment in the post but they don’t know whether it is correct or not.” He shared an example, “If somebody says your T-shirt has some problem, you go and change the T-shirt instead of washing it. You don’t even try to do what it is exactly intended for.” He ended his speech saying, “Don’t get manipulated with social networks.”

Anita Subedi was picked for the topic: “In the absence of Social Network”. She told that in the absence of social network we would not have been in this developed world as today. It is helping physical and mental development. She differentiated life between rural mountain and urban area. She explained how the thinking, communication and interaction have changed with the advent of such online social networks. She claimed that online social networks have played vital role in empowering youths of present days. She ended her speech with an open question: “In the absence of online social networks, would we be able to come into this state?”

Rajan Dulal, the final speaker in table topic session, was given the topic: “Meeting an old friend through online social network”. He was pretty awkward for a while as he was speaking for the first time and he was not that much exposed to online social networks. Still, he told, “Although I don’t have time to spend in online social networks, it is a good platform to know what other friends are doing. We can share news, better know each others and have chatting.” Till the date, he did not have any experience as indicated by the topic but he was interested to start using it responsibly then onwards.

After the table topic session, TMD Sapkota asked for the report from the evaluators one after another. Grammarian Mainali came up with his report. He mainly reported the grammar used in the speech by each manual and table topic speaker. He disclosed the incomplete sentences, wrong words and grammar used by the speakers. He was quite happy for the grammar portion of all five speeches despite some minor mistakes. Then, Ah Counter Basnyat presented his evaluation mainly on hesitation, unusual pause and repeated words of every speech. Similarly, Timer Risal presented his report on time used in the speech. Thapa, Sapkota, Badal, Subedi and Dulal spoke 4min 30sec, 4min 7sec, 2min 53sec, 3min 03sec and 1min 52sec respectively. The report suggested that both the manual speakers used lesser time than the given time. Subedi and Badal used the given time properly and effectively while Dulal used less than the given time.

Finally, General Evaluator Koirala presented his report on how effectively manual speakers organized their speeches. He was quite happy as both Thapa and Sapkota had completed their second projects i.e. “Organise Your Speech” very well. He congratulated both the speakers for their speeches. He also stated strong and weak points of both the speakers and offered ways to improve their speech and delivery skills. He also appreciated the speeches of table topic session specially the speech of Badal who have had a long experience of delivering speeches. He was also delighted to see the flawless organisation of the Toastmasters Program. Though he was responsible to pick the best speaker in both manual and table topic session, he didn’t do as all the speakers had given their level best. Instead, he praised the speech of every speaker. After the evaluation committee’s report, the audiences gave a big round of applause for all five speakers for their speeches.

TMD Sapkota thanked all the speakers and participants for their active and supportive role in successfully conducting the Vol.2, No.2 TM Program of PEN. He, then, returned the control of the session to President Koirala. Before wrapping up the program, President asked every participant to give his/her feedback on the day’s Toastmasters Program. Each and every participant highly appreciated the program which has on the spot evaluation i.e. every speaker can know their strengths and weaknesses and also get the feedback for the improvement. Many of the participants who attended for the first time thanked PEN for inviting and giving them an initial learning platform. They wished to join in this program again and again.

After the participants’ remarks, President Koirala stated that each person has a potentiality of becoming a good speaker but they need a platform such as Toastmasters. He assured to hold at least one TM Program each month as far as possible. He sincerely thanked the speakers, guests and audiences for their active participation and support. He also thanked TMD Sapkota for fabulously coordinating the program and formally adjourned the program.

Reported by
PEN Secretariat