Now that we are proud Toastmasters members, we understand more than ever the power of the voice and the importance of speaking out authentically and passionately about what you believe in.
— ERIN GRUWELL
Freedom Writers Toastmasters was formed in September 2014, after Professional Women Toastmasters (PWT) Past Presidents (Merle Minkoff-Singer, Ann Hastings, Patsy Bellah, Julie Broady, Kathie Nirschl, Evelyn Ballesteros, Hellena Jones-Elbling, Lisa Lockhart, and Miyo Yamauchi) held a Speechcraft session for the Freedom Writers Foundation. After the club was chartered, Evelyn and Lisa stayed on as club mentors, and other past presidents contributed their time when available. During our time together, we shared knowledge, laughter, tears, and inspiration. Each two-hour session seemed to go by in a flash and we always looked forward to the next meeting.
In 2014, in a diary, I wrote about Freedom Writers:
Every speech was a jewel. Each jewel had its own beauty and shined in its unique way. Each jewel was exquisite. Those jewels in the form of memories and inspiration will be with me for years to come, and I will cherish them.
It was true. Even after 3 years, I still remember those experiences as if they were yesterday; their icebreaker speeches, their inaugural meeting as Freedom Writers Toastmasters, their charter ceremony, and many other wonderful happenings along the way will always be fondly remembered.
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