March 16th is World Speech Day 2020, a celebration through live public speaking events across the globe. In fact, more than 100 nations will participate in WSD.
What to watch for on World Speech Day 2020
There will be events in schools and universities, simple community halls, and grand government buildings across the globe. Each one will mark an enduring characteristic of this annual event: its inclusiveness. World Speech Day reaches out to unexpected voices everywhere.
This year, there is one new county on the list and one new event that encapsulates WSD – a new event at the all-female University at Dar Al-Hekma in Saudi Arabia. Not only is this a terrific addition to WSD as it is the first ever in Saudi Arabia, it is also an invaluable opportunity to add the voices of young Arab women to the extraordinary diversity of events that characterize this special day of speeches.
Who can participate?
In just four years, World Speech Day has grown from an idea into a worldwide activity. Anyone can host an event and anyone can speak up.
Speeches can be in any language. Each event is locally organized and the whole effort is a remarkable example of a highly evolved movement.
There are only a few rules to guide the event. Speeches are short, typically no more than five minutes. The main theme for World Speech Day 2020 is “Climate Change,” although organizers are free to choose their own subject. Many hosts this year are going with a broader title, “Transformation.”
The importance of trust
One of the interesting things about World Speech Day is the power of trust. It seems that the more trust you place in people and the more space you give them to organize their own events the way they want to, the greater is the response.
WSD has grown through trust. Furthermore, by having few rules it becomes easier for organizers to create local events than if there was a slew of guidelines.
Clearly, the resources of schools in rural Africa differ from those of large oganizations in the West. This variation helps each host feel that their event has a design that works locally, for their unique community.
That’s even down to the use of the logo. Hosts don’t have to create expensive banners or sets; events don’t even have to show the World Speech Day 2020 logo. To borrow the Facebook phrase, “Participation is better than perfection.”
And, of course, WSD has grown because people enjoy sharing ideas. As one speaker at the WSD event in Mongolia put it, “I want to share my ideas to the world. I want to live my life to the fullest.”
And thanks to the WSD channel at GetVokl.com, events and speeches can broadcast to the world. They will also share simultaneously on YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Simply follow the tag #WorldSpeechDay on GetVokl.com for broadcasts.
Final words on World Speech Day 2020
World Speech Day will be a global celebration of the power of speeches to share ideas and bring communities together on March 16th. Across the world, people will speak up on this celebratory day, including those young women students at Dar Al-Hekma University.
Special thanks to WSD founder Simon Gibson for this collaboration that encourages people to speak up and be heard with respect.
Top photo courtesy of Simon Gibson.