May 28, 2020
Dear Club Officer,
There is cause for celebration. As Toastmasters clubs around the world adapt to the effects the coronavirus crisis is having on in-person events and meetings, Toastmasters International is taking note of the overwhelming positive energy and resiliency. With year-end approaching, many of you have risen to the very difficult challenge of continuing to achieve membership and education goals, despite what is going on around you, and for this, you and your clubs are an inspiration and deserve special recognition.
The Board of Directors is sensitive to those clubs that have been dealing with membership challenges brought on by the current crisis; in fact, the Board and World Headquarters has received much feedback requesting a modification of the Distinguished Club Program (DCP) or even postponing the program year-end date to a later time. After careful consideration, the Board determined that any recognition program change to lower the qualifying requirements or goals would be unfair to those of you going above and beyond—and amazingly, still striving toward achieving Distinguished status!
To ensure all clubs, Distinguished or not, are recognized for their outstanding efforts, new club-level awards have been created for the 2019–2020 program year only. They were designed with the same enthusiasm so many of you displayed to earn them:
Online Ovation/Education Award Silver, Online Ovation/Education Award Gold
Clubs will qualify for these awards by meeting both of the following criteria by June 30, 2020:
The Great Revival Award
This award will be presented to clubs that were suspended by April 1, 2020, then reinstated between April 1 and September 30, 2020.
Membership Consistency Award, Membership Resiliency Award
Based on a club’s membership base as calculated on July 1, 2019, the first award is presented to any club that experienced no net member loss; the second award is presented to any club that experienced a net member gain by June 30, 2020.
You can find descriptions of these awards and check your progress by visiting the Recognition Awards tab on the COVID-19 page of the Toastmasters International website www.toastmasters.org/covid-19. Recognition for a club that achieves any of the awards described above would be listed in Club Central under Club Awards. For any questions on how your club can achieve any or all of these awards, please contact our Club Quality and Member Support team at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Toastmasters International admires and appreciates the truly extraordinary efforts of club officers who are diligently supporting club meetings and actively encouraging members to achieve their year-end goals in these unprecedented times. If you can achieve this today, there is no telling what you will accomplish tomorrow—and we look forward to continuing to recognize you.
May 6, 2020
Thank you for putting your trust in the Board of Directors as we work together to navigate
this difficult time. COVID-19 has put a strain on the economy, directly affecting
Toastmasters International and many of our members. We have been working diligently to
find feasible and timely solutions with your best interest in mind; every decision taken by
the Board of Directors has had serious consideration and discussion behind it. We would
like to share three new decisions with you:
- Access to Pathways’ Base Camp has been extended through June 30, 2020 for
members who were in good standing as of April 30, 2020. Our hope is that this will
provide added support to Toastmasters who are not yet able to renew their
membership but may want to continue their educational journey. Please note that
this is not an extension of all membership benefits.
- Several austerity measures are in place at World Headquarters, including a decision
to not fill open staff positions and a pause on compensation increases of any kind for current employees.
- Print delivery of the Toastmaster magazine has been temporarily discontinued for
the coming months, starting with the May 2020 issue. This decision took into
consideration that some countries are no longer accepting mail from outside their
borders. We will reevaluate the status of print delivery regularly and will inform the
membership when it will resume. We anticipate this will be no later than January
- Access to Pathways’ Base Camp has been extended through June 30, 2020 for
The magazine is still available online at www.toastmasters.org/Magazine. If you prefer, you can also download a PDF of the monthly issue to print. The online magazine has digital benefits not included in the print version, such as: an interactive experience, extended photo galleries, timely topics, and exclusive video and audio content.
For more information regarding decisions made by the Board related to COVID-19, visit the COVID-19 FAQ.
The Board truly appreciates your support and commitment. We hope you will continue to
find Pathways and the Toastmaster magazine sources of education and inspiration.
Take care and stay safe,
|Deepak Menon||Daniel Rex|
|International President||Chief Executive Officer|
|Toastmasters International||Toastmasters International|
This message was sent to all members.
There is a two speech limit per manual in the traditional education program but this is not the case in the Pathways program. There is not a limit in the number of speeches you can complete outside of the club. The requirements for completing speeches outside of the club in the Pathways program are as follows:
- Speak to your VPE/executive committee and receive approval for completing your project outside of your club
- Meet the project requirements
- A Toastmaster must be present for your evaluations
- Receive a verbal evaluation
- Receive a written evaluation
If this criteria is met, your project will be eligible for credit. The intention of the Pathways program is to be more flexible as life is ever-changing more now than ever!
- Area, Division, or District events can no longer be conducted in person, on or prior to June 1, 2020. As an alternative, we encourage Areas, Divisions, and Districts to host events online to help clubs and members through this difficult time.
- Each District must conduct its Annual District Council Meeting online, rather than in person, on or prior to June 1, 2020. More guidance on conducting an online Annual District Council Meeting will be forthcoming.
- Each District Executive Committee is authorized to determine whether they will continue to conduct or cancel Speech Contests for the 2019–2020 contest cycle. Each District is responsible for notifying World Headquarters of their decision.
List of Club Connections for Virtual Meetings
March 24, 2020
My dear fellow Toastmasters and friends,
The pandemic caused by the coronavirus is now affecting all aspects of our personal and professional lives with so many activities on hold. For us, as Toastmasters, this is unsettling and makes us feel isolated. We rely on one another for growth, support, and camaraderie. We have helped one another become stronger leaders, speakers, and team players. Communication is at our core; we thrive on it.
While we are most comfortable fully engaged with in-person meetings and interaction, we are finding it is possible to thrive through our technological connections now. Online meetings, speeches, and chats are giving us purpose and reason to smile with one another, even in this difficult time. Toastmasters was always a laboratory, of sorts, for experimenting and learning, and now it gives us an opportunity to become more creative as we engage online together. We are experiencing our support system, still in place, all around the world.
As your International President, I have been thinking very seriously about our role as Toastmasters, but also about the precautions we must take during these times, especially regarding current and upcoming Toastmasters contests, programs, and events. To see the actions we’ve taken so far, click here.
Rest assured that we are closely monitoring the situation with respect to the 2020 Toastmasters International Convention to be held in Paris, France in August. We are actively working with our partners in Paris and relying on local health and government officials to assess moving forward. We are also following the lead of the world’s most trusted sources, including the World Health Organization (WHO) and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and will keep you updated on any changes. We want to make the smartest decision, above all, for the health and safety of you and your families.
I encourage you to continue to find ways to connect; emotional wellness is just as important as physical health. The Board of Directors and World Headquarters staff is committed to helping you through these challenging times. While staff is working remotely for the safety of all, they are dedicated to keeping service standards and helping members in any way they can. Please reach out to them here.
Our activities as Toastmasters have certainly shifted, with our primary focus on protecting ourselves, so we can protect the globe. It is my hope and passion that we stay connected and come through stronger, as we endure new challenges, but also find new reasons to be grateful.
Please take care of one another,
March 17, 2020
Dear Club Officer,
The coronavirus disease (COVID-19) continues to impact Toastmasters around the world, and we understand the challenge this poses for many as the April dues renewal period approaches. To provide added support to our members and clubs, the Board of Directors has extended the April renewals due date to April 30, 2020. This extension has the following impacts:
Toastmasters International acknowledges and appreciates the efforts of the many club officers who are diligently supporting club meetings whether in person or online.
Want to promote your business in this year’s conference program?
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