Empathy [Meeting Report of 2021-02-09]

Again a very international meeting – we had the pleasure to welcome Toastmaster members from other clubs as well as guest joining us for the first time. Our presiding officer Poorana warmly welcomed Paul from the States, Hannah from Namibia, Sigrid from the Club “Redefluß” in Bonn, Amrith – who had been with us several times already  – and two newcomers Mohammed and Erjon.

With lots of quotations on empathy the toastmaster Sybille led through the evening. One example: “Learning to stand in somebody else’s shoes, to see through their eyes, that’s how peace begins. And it’s up to you to make that happen. Empathy is a quality of character that can change the world”, by Barack Obama.
The word of the day “commiserate”, well presented by Oliver, aligned to the theme and was used three times in the course of the evening.

Our Table Topics master Poorana explained what Table Topics is about and asked the following four questions:
“Things are never as bad as they seem”. The TT speech was given by our Toastmaster Julian.
“If you want more kindness in the world put some there”. Our guest Erjan took this question.
 “If you can’t determine right from wrong you lack empathy not religion”. Amrith delivered his TT speech on this question.
“How you make others feel about themselves says a lot about you”, Hannah opted for this one.

We had two prepared speeches. We had the pleasure to listen to Sigrid’s fabulous speech “The biggest mistake”. A very personal incident triggered off a reflection of her life. Sigrid’s message was that life is precious and we should not make the mistake to think we have lot’s of time left.
Martin spoke about his experiences as VP membership and shared with us the results of the 360° evaluation, a scrutinizing report on what he did well and what could be improved. This report was conducted by Toastmaster members of his club.

The evaluations were given by Jeff and Oliver. The award went to Jeff. The best Table Topic speaker was Amrith. The best speaker was Sigrid. Everybody loved this committed, very touching and personal speech.

Despite some technical glitches we had again a joyful, relaxed, friendly and inspiring evening.

Poorana thanked all participants for their contributions and asked the guests how they have liked the evening. Finally he reminded the team of the area contest on February 27. There are still roles to be filled. The organizers are looking for judges, chief judges and ballot counters.

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