On 26th January 2016, Tuesday, both my husband and I were invited to be part of the inauguration of the 16th Branch of Thiru-Vi-Ka Speakers Forum in Chennai, at Independence Day Park behind Valluvar Kottam. Exnora and Walkers Association joined hands in support.
It was such a pleasant morning where lot of people of all age groups gathered. There were guests of honour felicitating the function. Few children queued up to speak about freedom fighters and India's Republic Day.
Children and Elders took up turns to talk freely, happily and out of heart on the things that were closer to them. After the flag hoisting on the eve of 67th Republic Day, the guests gathered to celebrate the beginning of the speakers forum at this specific park. This is a moment of celebration as this forum is a platform for all people, sharing and give and take knowledge. There is no money motive or heirarchy of leadership in this forum. This is the forum of the people, by the people and for the people.
The mantra of the speakers forum founded by Dr .R. Damodharan 13 years ago in Chennai is very simple. Meet everyweek in the nearest park, encourage speakers and give them an opportunity to showcase talents, share knowledge, build a community of inspiring youngsters and prune them to be leaders.
1. The speakers can talk on any subject except criticizing Religion and Politics
2. Anyone can participate and speakers are free to talk on anything, except provoking speech on religions, political or radical topics
3. Motive is to provide brief, clear and precise speech within 5 minutes given to each speaker
4. All languages and all age groups are encourged
5. They meet at the local park (branch of Thiru-vi-ka Forum) every week at the specific time and share knowledge.
6. It has people from all walks of life - including lawyers, doctors, engineers, press people, teachers, auditors, accountants, students, IAS aspirants, government employees, home makers and all others.
7. Every one is a member. It continues as a forum of people
8. Voluntary contributions help for the motivational gifts and organizing chairs, mikes etc needed for the forum. There is no monetary motive in this whole exercise
9. Free meetings attended by an average of 30 people in each park every week to conquer the fear of public speaking.
10. Continued for years with the motive of making good speakers and thinkers to transform as leaders. Energize them to meet the challenges of life
What this forum builds
1. Excellent speakers - making introverts come out as extroverts
2. Making Leaders with objectives of public speaking
3. Building a network of like minded people
4. Creating a community with strong moral values
5. Importance of time, talk and words is enriched
6. Develop communication skills and self-confidence
May God bless the endeavors of the self-less service and contribution of all forum members continue. May this tribe increase as the forum slowly spreads to all the parks in Chennai.
Long Live the inspiration for a better society.