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Jakarta Post

Toastmasters aim to produce better speakers

  • Aparna Bansal

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Mon, July 7 2008   /  10:31 am
Toastmaster Ersa delivers a speech at the meeting for the Essential Club. She has been a member for four years, during which time she has traveled to take part in a speech competition and has been given her own radio show. (JP/Aparna Bansal)(JP/Aparna Bansal)

It is close to 7 p.m. on a Thursday night. In a small, fluorescent-lit room nestled high in Plaza Semanggi shopping mall in Central Jakarta, 16 and women, all in their business attire, loosen their ties and bond together over a Japanese take-out. Huddled together, the strangers strike up conversations and become friends in a matter of minutes. Among the crowd are bankers, business executives, teachers and even university students, all taking turns putting on their name-tags. As the clock approaches the hour, one man rises to bang a gavel on the whiteboard and all turn, putting away their food, while some take out notes from their pockets and get a pen ready. The aroma of sweet and sour sauce still lingers in the air. The anticipation and good cheer seem palpable as members and guests are welcomed to the Essential Toastmasters Club. Toastmasters International...