Finalist Siphosenkosi Kadzutu

It all started when my French teacher, Mademoiselle Pedzisa, invited me to join the Debate Club in Form 2 at Prince Edward School. I started watching videos so that I can become a better speaker. When I was in Form 3, I stumbled on a speech by Mohammed Qahtani. That’s the year I attempted Public Speaking for the very first time and ever since then, the passion for speaking has grown.

The core message in my speech is in the title. There is always a point in our lives that we Drop the ball and all we need to do is Pick up the ball.

A lot of the things prompted me to present this speech. My message is meant to give hope to that person out there who feels like they messed up really bad and there is no way out of their mess. I am here to let them know that all you need to do is pick up the ball.

The current state of my beautiful nation, Zimbabwe, is another reason that prompted me to choose this speech. I hear a lot of my fellow citizens talking about how Zimbabwe used to be so beautiful and how it is an impossible task for us to go back to the golden days. My message to all Zimbabweans is that, if we make a collective effort, from the highest office to the ordinary citizen, we can PICK UP THE BALL and move forward to achieve things beyond what we can imagine.

The higher you go the more you have to train.

My goal was to give at least 2 speeches at every stage of the competition all the way to the end of the International Speech Contest.

My advise is, just start! I wrote about this in my book Becoming 19. It doesn’t matter how much English you know, start practicing where you are, with the words you know. A good way to practice is to go through your Pathways projects and complete them. That way you get more practice.

For confidence I believe that being comfortable speaking in front of the mirror really helps with self-confidence. Speak more in front of your club members as well. Toastmasters will never laugh at you but will laugh with you.