District 102 Updates on COVID-19 Impact

Dr Yvonne Leong

Dear Members of District 102,

The coronavirus outbreak is now a global pandemic – a crisis that all of us are facing now. The word crisis in Chinese is “危机” if we break the 2 Chinese words “ + ” it means “danger + opportunity”. Yes, in every crisis, if we can be fearless in the face of danger, we will see opportunity. In this global crisis, we find the opportunity to change our lives, change the ways we meet friends and change the way we run Toastmasters club meetings and contests.

For example, with the Movement Control Order, most of our members started to do clubbing online. Some even attend more than 1 online meetings in a day. We make friends from other regions and countries; we learn from members outside of our circles. The crisis brought us new ways of learning. Stay positive, take care of yourselves and your loved ones in this challenging time. We can sail through this crisis together.

Many advice, guidelines, directives, and orders coming from the Toastmasters International and our government in the past one week; and what do they mean to all of us in our Toastmasters Clubs, Areas, Divisions and District? I would like to address the most common questions, which fall mainly into the following categories:

• Should we continue with club meetings and club contests? Due to the Movement Control Order effective 18th to 31st March 2020, we need to avoid mass gatherings; but we can continue our club meetings and contests virtually. District will share an online contest quick reference guide and will organize online workshops on “how to run online club meetings” in days to come. Meanwhile, you may refer to TI’s online speech contest exception document HERE.

• Should we continue with area and division contests? Yes, Toastmasters International has recommended all district events from now till 1st June 2020 to be conducted online. You may refer to TI’s online speech contest exception document HERE.

• Is our Annual Conference (AC2020) still on? AC2020 will be postponed to after June 2020. We will communicate with you once the date and venue are determined. Meanwhile, AC’s organizing team will contact the delegates regarding the refund of the AC fees paid.

• When is our District contests, District Executive Committee Meeting (DECM) and District Council Meeting (DCM)? They will be conducted online in June. We will announce the detail in due course.

• When is the cut-off date for submission of education award, so that we can be recognized in the coming Annual Conference? As the AC2020 is postponed to after June, the education award submission deadline will be postponed from 30th April to 31st May 2020. This will give us sufficient time to prepare the plaques and awards for you and your club.

• Do Area Directors need to complete the club visit? Yes, the deadline for club visit and campaigns remain status quo.  You are encouraged to conduct online meetings with the club officers.

• When do I need to pay April membership dues? Toastmasters International has extended the April membership renewal deadline to 30th April 2020. However, we advise all clubs to complete the membership renewal by 28th March 2020. District’s Membership Renewal campaign is extended 1 week (from 21st to 28th March), we will recognize your effort to complete the renewal early by giving you a car decal and a club signboard. Click HERE for detail.

Nothing matters more than your safety and well-being. Thank you to continue providing our members with an alternative channel for their learning. It matters to so many members, especially at this time of the term where members need a platform to complete their speeches before the end of the term. Thank you for helping to keep us moving forward through these most challenging times.

Should you need further clarifications, please speak to your Area Directors, Division Directors or the undersigned. Take care and keep safe.

Dr. Yvonne Leong, DTM
District 102 Director

Toastmasters International
Where Leaders Are Made