Online Speech Contests Explained

In reaction to the evolving Covid situation affecting the four countries in District 59, District Core team held an urgent zoom call with the District Executive Committee* on Friday December 3 to discuss the 2021-2022 contest season. After consulting the policies of Toastmasters International, there were still decisions to be made. This is what was decided.

Area, Division and District Contests

Due to the risks of meeting in person during the continuing pandemic and the high possibility that events may need to be cancelled due to future restrictions, the District Core team unanimously voted – on Monday December 6 – to hold all speech contests beyond club level (Area, Division and District) online for 2021-2022. As a reminder, there are six contest categories this year, as follows:

  • International Speech Contest in English
  • Speech Contests in French and Dutch
  • Tables Topics in English, French and Dutch

If you have questions about this, please contact your Area or Division Director.

Club Contests

Members across the District have asked about Toastmaster International’s Covid policy as it pertains to club contests. Toastmasters International does not have policies regarding a requirement to provide proof of vaccination or to wear a mask to meet in person or attend events. Toastmasters International recommends that each club and District adhere to the following:

  • Local governmental restrictions for in-person gatherings. 
  • Specific requirements set by the venue at which the club meeting or District event is taking place.

(The above is an excerpt from Club Member Support and District Growth Support Teams email December 10, 2021.)

Despite having to conduct our contests online, we look forward to a Spring contest season filled with inspiring speeches, leadership opportunities, connections with old (and new) friends!

Opportunities are everywhere!

We encourage all Toastmasters members in the District to think about what you can learn and what new skills you can develop this contest season, not just as speech contestants, but also as a judge, ballot counter, timer or enthusiastic and supportive audience member. You could conduct online education sessions on a topic you particularly like or know about. You could propose online games and other activities that will make the online contests more fun and interactive?

If the District can be of assistance as you plan and manage your contests, please let us know.

* The District Executive Committee includes the Core Team (District Director, Program Quality Director, Club Growth Director, Public Relations Manager, Finance Manager,

Administration Manager, Parliamentarian), the Area and Division Directors