Make your own free website on

|   Activities   |   Home  |

Division K 9th Annual Convention’s Educational Workshops
- 19 March 2005

By Azlina Abdul Jalil, CTM

Convention Starts

The convention kicked off with the Division K Council Meeting on the 19 March 2005 at 10 am at the Promenade Hotel, the venue of the convention. The council meeting, which was presided over by Division K Governor Richard A. Gontusan, DTM, focused on the performance of clubs in the Division and how the performance could be improved by the end of the term with reports from all the Area Governors on their respective Areas’ progress.

Among those who attended the council meeting were the District Governor Dr A. Arulnathan, DTM; District 51 LGM R Sivanganam, DTM; International Director Hopeful Dr John Lau, DTM, Area E1 Governor Dr Wong Kim Poh, ATM-G and Area C3 Governor Sandrasegaran, ATM-B.

It was wonderful to see some familiar faces from last year’s Division and District convention. Pushfa, Rozana, Alicia and even Law Lee Poh from Connections Toastmasters in Kuching. She was the speaker that I evaluated in the District level contest!

Educational Workshops

Ever wanted to:

o   Learn to catch a frog?
o   Spice up your speaking skills?
o   Do magic like Harry Potter?
o   Build networks of new friends?
o   All of the above?

If so, then the Division K 9th Annual Convention Educational Workshops were the place to be! The workshops were conducted in the afternoon session of the 19 March 2005, and included four very prominent and senior toastmasters, sharing their knowledge and experience for all to learn and ponder.

Frog Lovers Beware

The first speaker was DTM Dr John Lau, who talked about how to “Catch That Frog”. Animal lovers will be pleased to learn that no actual frogs were harmed in any way during the duration of this workshop!

Catch That Frog is Dr John Lau’s metaphor for not letting your goals, your dreams and desires slip out of your reach. He talked about belief windows and how we can be the BEST by believing, encouraging, sharing and trusting ourselves, and each other. He urged members to make a difference and help others achieve the same. He noted that a little push in the right direction can often make a big difference.

Learn and Laugh

Next, Division K Toastmasters got out their spice racks and learned the fine art to “Spice It Up with Humour”. The presenter, a well known and loved joker..err clown..errr..Humour Master. He was none other than Abu Bakar Sheriff, DTM from the Kota Kinabalu Toastmasters Club. Abu Bakar warmed up the audience with a few jokes of his own and reinforced the fact that stories and humour are a powerful combination for any speaker. Humour attracts and holds the attention, makes a point more memorable and is a good tool to put across your point without offending. He noted that Toastmasters and life really, is a marriage of learning and laughter.


Datuk Adeline Leong, DTM was the next speaker who instantly built rapport with the audience when she pulled out a rabbit from a hat! Eat your heart out, Harry Potter! Datuk Adeline spoke on how to “Bring Out the Magic in You!” She started out by reiterating the story of the Golden Buddha, how it was discovered in the midst of something that was thought of as an ordinary statue. She talked about how that Golden Essence exists in each and every one of us.

To bring out the magic in you, Datuk Adeline said that you first have to Be The Magic by believing in yourself. Only then will you be able to Create The Magic by being and doing the best that you can, no matter what circumstances lie ahead of you. Then you will be able to Live the Magic and you can only achieve this by getting out of your comfort zone, walking the extra mile and facing challenges that appear before you.

I particularly loved Datuk Adeline’s closing story of The Challenge - of how the Japanese fishermen put a baby shark in their fish tanks in order to keep the fish in a fresh and lively condition!

It just makes you wonder – do you, perhaps, need to put a shark in your tank?

What’s In It For Me?

Most of us have probably asked ourselves this inevitable question. Perhaps, whilst making the decision to join Toastmasters or any other organizations. It’s in our nature to want to know, what’s in it for me (WIIFM)?

The fourth speaker, R Sivanganam, DTM spoke on the topic of “Building New Clubs” with a twist. Most of us would have probably heard numerous talks on this topic before. However, Siva answered the question on WIIFM by talking about the joy of sharing and helping others succeed when we introduce new members or charter new clubs.

In Toastmasters, it’s not just about learning how to speak and developing leadership skills. It’s also about meeting new people, unifying members to achieve the clubs goals, learning and sharing together. And that is really what is in for you when you become a part of the Toastmasters family.

Meanwhile the Mandarin Toastmasters held separate workshops, which ran concurrently with the English workshops. To the Mandarin Toastmasters, Dr Jacob Yan, DTM talked about “Time Management,” while Dr Wong Kim Poh talked about “Creating Miracles.” Both workshops were well received by the audience.

(Click on image to view Larger image)

Jennifer Chong and her
assistant, Leong Seh Aun
wait to register all delegates
to the Convention

A prominent speaker at
the educational workshops,
Dr John Lau.

Mandarin Toastmasters
attend workshops by Dr Jacob
Yan and Dr Wong Kim Poh

For urging the Toastmasters
to put a “shark in their tanks,”
Datuk Adeline Leong receives
a momento from Division K
Governor Richard A. Gontusan

Another prominent speaker
R Sivanganam

|   Activities   |   Home  |