Region 6: Regional Final Youth Speaks 2018

The Region 6 Final included one school from D1100: Red Maids' High School in Bristol

Saturday 21st of April, after the disruption of the March snow, finally saw the Regional Final of Youth Speaks at Lydiard Millicent Village Hall. There was a tremendous turnout of supporters from all Districts, and the competing teams once again did not disappoint with their broad range of chosen topics. These included “Could there be a solution to the housing crisis”, “The true meaning of happiness” and tough subjects such as gender and pay inequality, fact versus fiction and freedom of choice. The skills on display were truly inspiring, particularly when considering the age range is 11-17 year olds. 

Congratulations to all who reached this stage and gave such excellent presentations. The judges included Carl Rosier-Jones, current president of the Swindon Speaker's club who is a serving Detective, alongside Mary Champion, twice Mayor of nearby town Royal Wootton Bassett who has a history of supporting youth programmes and projects. Both agreed that the standard and abilities were extremely high. Sadly there could only be two winning teams: the Intermediate Category was won by King Edward VI Handsworth School for Girls in Birmingham, with “The True Meaning of Happiness”, and the Senior Category was won by Red Maids’ High School in Bristol, with “True love is not the stuff of Pop Songs”.  Both teams were awarded with individual trophies and certificates, and also a further version of both as a memento for their Schools.

The judges, in recognition of the skills on display, also awarded a certificate and book to the Best Speaker, Chairperson and Vote of Thanks in each age category. These awards went to:

Intermediate Category:

·         Best Chairperson: Rachel Williams (D1210 - Shrewsbury High School)

·         Best Speaker: Yameena Rushdy (D1060 - King Edward V1 Handsworth School for Girls)

·         Best Vote of Thanks: Nicole Rowlands (D1150 - Bryntirion Comprehensive School)

Senior Category:

·         Best Chairperson: Hannah Murphy (D1150 - Cwmtawe Community School)

·         Best Speaker: Niki Mehta (D1100 – Red Maids’ High School)

·         Best Vote of Thanks: Kay Boucher (D1060 - Kineton High School)

We wish the individual winners as well as the two winning teams: Dhairya Ruparelia, Yameena Rushdy and Praise Abelarde of King Edward VI Handsworth School for Girls, and Evelyn Quinn, Niki Mehta and Farin Rahbarpour of Red Maid's High School the very best of luck representing Region 6 in the National Final in May.

Congratulations are extended also to the sponsoring Rotary Clubs of Solihull St Alphage, and The Rotary Clubs of Bristol and Clifton.

A huge thank you to all the Rotarians who volunteered to facilitate this event, including the extended support from The Rotary Club of Royal Wootton Bassett Town for assistance with parking, catering, registration, the role of question master and assistance with scoring, and to Geoff Sumner of Chepstow and District Rotary Club who lead on the timing.