Nicknamed the Rainy Port, Keelung is a major port city with ethnic and cultural diversity in northern Taiwan. Many people living in this port city believe that if they can prepare themselves with better communication skills in Mandarin, English, Taiwanese (Fukienese, 閩南語), and even Hakka (客家話), they are likely to have a happier and more successful life. It is for this reason that many people in Keelung have joined Toastmasters Clubs to sharpen their communication skills in Mandarin, English, and Taiwanese in a happy and fun learning environment.
In this small city with a population of about 390,000, there are three Toastmasters clubs, namely, Keelung Happy Life Toastmasters Club, Hai-Lan-Lan Mandarin Toastmasters Club, and Keelung Taiwanese Toastmasters Club.
Members of these Toastmasters clubs are from all walks of life, including business operators, managers, government employees, teachers, students, housewives, etc. As most of them have to go to work or go to school during the daytime, they usually conduct their regular meetings at night twice a month.
At meetings, they take turns playing different roles to learn from each other, including presiding over meetings, giving speeches, telling jokes, evaluating others’ speeches, etc. They also attend District Toastmasters Conventions, various speech contests, training workshops, etc. to better their skills.
Additionally, they also organize a variety of other activities to share, learn, and have fun together. A joint outing featuring Earth Day was held on June 10, 2017, to promote environmental awareness and foster a sense of togetherness among fellow Toastmasters.
Participated in by 44 people, this informative and fun event was held at a sweet potato farm owned by a Toastmaster member living in New Taipei City’s Jinshan District. Among the participants are these Toastmasters clubs’ members and their families.
Walking in the greenery farm, not only did they enjoy the beauty of Mother Nature, but they also observed farmers’ hardships removing weeds with a sharp-edged hoe in the fields.
Moreover, some even got a chance to experience transplanting sweet potato plants in the ridges of dirt rows in the fields as well. After visiting the sweet potato farm, they also went to a stunning scenic spot nearby, called Shitoushan Park, or Lion’s Head Mountain Park (獅頭山公園).
All of the participants have gained further insights into environmental protection and how sweet potatoes grow, while enjoying the beautiful scenery in the country. Many of them expressed that this event was so meaningful and enjoyable that they looked forward to another outing scheduled to be held when the sweet potatoes are harvested in the next 100 days.
Undoubtedly, joining a Toastmasters Club is definitely a good way to learn, to share, and to have a happier and more successful life.
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