Almaty Toastmasters Club

Almaty Toastmasters Spotlight Series: Greg Heaver

Almaty Toastmasters Club – Member Spotlight Series will be featuring all the current members of the Club. Stay tuned to learn more about our fellow Toastmasters, why joined the Club, what they like about it and what is their life like outside of the Club activities!

Today’s “spotlight” features Greg Heaver, the founding member, Treasurer and recently appointed Vice President of Education of Toastmasters Club in Almaty, Kazakhstan, which was established in December 2013. We are delighted to present this interview.

Greg is an avid follower of Australian Football. This photo was taken at the Kangaroo Bar in Almaty in 2014 on the day of the Grand Final. His team Hawthorn won of course.
Greg is an avid follower of Australian Football. This photo was taken at the Kangaroo Bar in Almaty in 2014 on the day of the Grand Final. His team Hawthorn won, of course!

1. What is your happiest childhood memory?

Each summer when we would spend a few weeks down at a caravan park on the beach together with our cousins and their families, just running around barefoot through the sandhills, eating icecreams, and swimming in the ocean.

2.  When did you join Toastmasters? What made you join?

I think it was in 2011.

Even though I already had some unsucessful stints at public speaking clubs in Australia on my resume, I thought I would give it another shot, simply because I knew that I needed to change.

3.  Life outside Toastmasters or what do you do for a living?

I work for a mining company.

4.     How do you use communication skills in your daily life?

Well, communications is required at some level to just survive in this world. And the better you can do it, the better your life, and the lives of those people around you, will be. So I try and use my skills to create better relationships, and better experiences.

  1.   What do you like best about our Club?

The comradeship, the energy, and the passion of our members. It is infectious.

  1.   What have you learnt since you joined? Do you feel that you had grown as a communicator or a leader since you joined Toastmasters?

I can say without doubt that I have become a better speaker. I know that simply from watching some of the early speeches that were recorded.

But despite saying this, when I watch some of the other incredible Toastmasters in our Club, I realise that I still have a lot to learn in this art.

What I have also learnt is that public speaking is like any skill. No matter how much you progress, if you don’t continuing practising on a regular basis, then you quickly unlearn things and find yourself going backwards, which is not fun.

  1.      What are your personal hobbies and interests?

I love riding my bike, and I love playing poker.

When I was younger I had serious aspirations in the former. Now that I am a little older, I have serious aspirations in the latter.

  1.      Can you share random or surprising facts from you biography?

One of my first jobs was as a ‘checkout chick’ (in case that is Australian terminology, then ‘Person who scans the grocery items and works the cash register in a supermarket’), three times a week after school.

  1.      If you could have a lunch with anyone, who would that person be and why?

No-one in particular comes to mind.

  1.   What is the most important thing you would tell your friends and family about Toastmasters?

That it is never too late to face your fears in life. And if those fears are speaking in public then Toastmasters provides a friendly, encouraging, non judgemental forum which will be able to help you succeed – providing of course that you have the courage to try.

Greg is the current Vice President of Education at Almaty Toastmasters Club. Previously, he held the role of a Treasurer since the Club’s establishment in December 2013. He remains the key member of our Leadership team and recently established a Mentorship Program within the Education Committee that he chairs. Members, guests, fellow Leadership teammates and the founding members and officers of Almaty Toastmasters Club all treasure Greg’s excellent organizational skills, positive energy and enthusiasm for the Club! 

Thank you for this interview, Greg! We all appreciate your leadership and commitment to Almaty Toastmasters Club and your previous role as a Treasurer (which expanded to interim roles of Secretary and Sergeant of Arms a number of times) as well as mentor to so many members of the Club – was both inspiring and encouraging! We wish you all the best with your tour as a VP of Education starting in July 2016, where all your amazing efforts so far – already gather high praise from all members and guests of the Club.

Almaty Toastmasters Club Highlights: January-June 2016

Letterhead

News Digest for January-June 2016

Here is a quick overview of some of the highlights on what’s happening beyond our regular weekly meetings within this past half-a-year at Almaty Toastmasters Club – dedicated to those of you, who don’t want to miss our news!

Xmas 2015-16Christmas dinner on December 30, 2015: our year kicked off with an amazing hosted by our Club’s President, Tom Bartkoske and his lovely wife, Michele at their home here at the foothills of Almaty mountains. Click this link to our YouTube Channel to watch the video made by our regular member and video blogger – Aiym Nurseitova. Thank you, Aiym for this crafty video: Almaty Toastmasters Member New Years Dinner in December 2015

Thank you to our wonderful hosts – Tom and Michele for the warm and cosy atmosphere of your home, delicious meals, fun games, impromptu holiday speeches during this unforgettable evening!

 

Movie Night on January 4, 2016: over 15 members and guests went on to watch “The Little Prince” in English in the first days of this year. A legendary classic prose, where every line is a deep, beautiful metaphor that provokes and provides food for thought for people of all ages created discussions about favorite movies, books and set forth an establishment of our reading club as a consequence a few days later! Facebook Event: Movie Night “Little Prince” – January 4, 2016

“25 Books” Reading Club established on January 15, 2016: a book club was created among Toastmasters Club members and guests with an idea of reading at least 25 books a year! We are all set. This Club’s opened from the strong initiative, full coordination and our book-reading tracking of Yernur Satybaldiyev, former member of Astana Toastmasters Club, who had officially joined our Club here in April 2016! The reading club also, enjoyed strong support and enthusiasm of Ilyas Batyrov, founding member and Sergeant at Arms of our Club. We appreciate it. Here is a video made by Aiym, again, for a glimpse at one of those meetings: video: “25 Books” Reading Club Meeting on April 2, 2016

 

Social Event on March 20, 2016: Hiking trip to Butakovka Waterfalls. Hiking enthusiasts at Toastmasters cannot forget that last spring trail to Butakovka waterfall – thanks to Daulet Mukanov, our newly elected Sergeant at Arms – for organizing this picturesque hike!

March 20 - group

Hike 20 -snow

March 20 - snow

 

 

 

 

 

 

April 6, 2016: Business Meeting hosted by the Leadership Team of the Club for its members: training, tips and motivation to be a better public speaker and a great Toastmaster. Follow the link for a video of a Business Meeting for Members on April 6, 2016

Our after-regular-meeting get-togethers every Wednesday are always fun! Come join us for networking, games, good conversations with our Club members – stay up to learn where we are going after the regular meetings end! Here is the video link to one of Aiym’s wonderful vlogs about it: www.youtube.com/watch?v=qgKPsbnxzRE

 

Some of our Club’s events in photos:

Honored to host Astana Toastmasters Club President - Anuar Zhumabayev!
We were honored to host Astana Toastmasters Club President – Anuar Zhumabayev!
Our members and guests bike-n-drinks ride in May 2016!
Our members and guests bike-n-drinks ride in May 2016!

Stay tuned for our new Member Spotlight Feature posts on this website blog!

Stay tuned for our new Member Spotlight Feature posts on this website’s blog!

 

 

Hosting a visitor from Toastmasters Club in New York City - Dilber Shatursun!
Hosting a visitor from Toastmasters Club in New York City – Dilber Shatursun!

May 4, 2016 marked the visit from USA: Dilber Shatursun, Secretary of Flushing Toastmasters in New York and on May 11, 2016 for the first time in its brief history, Almaty Toastmasters Club had the priviledge of a fellow Toastmaster from another club (all the way from America!) deliver a speech during our regular meeting. Dilber Shatursun, New York’s Flushing Toastmasters Club, gave her Competent Communicator Manual’s Prepared Speech Project #9.

Follow the link to view Dilber’s warm and touching speech: www.youtube.com/watch?v=2KsfWy-RMVU

 

 

 

Gallatin Valley Toastmasters Club in Bozeman, Montana, USA says hello to Almaty Toastmasters Club!
Gallatin Valley Toastmasters Club in Bozeman, Montana, USA says hello to Almaty Toastmasters Club!

Meanwhile, this April and May, our President – Tom Bartkoske became the Best Table Topics Speaker at the Toastmasters Clubs he visited in China and USA! We are so proud of you, Tom!

 

 

 

 

 

Our Toastmasters participated in Almaty Marathon on April 24, 2016 and made us proud!
Our Toastmasters participated in Almaty Marathon on April 24, 2016 and made us proud!
March 8 2016 celebration
Toastmasters Club Men Congratulated Ladies with International Women’s Day – March 8, 2016. Thank you, Gentlemen!
After-regular meeting outings are held after each Wednesday meeting!

 

 

 

 

 

Ladies of Toastmasters Club in Almaty congratulated the Gentlemen with May 7 Day! Here is the video link: www.youtube.com/watch?v=nPnE6ytQszY
Ladies of Toastmasters Club in Almaty congratulated the Gentlemen with May 7 Day! Here is the video link: www.youtube.com/watch?v=nPnE6ytQszY

April 27, 2016: our Club held its elections and a new Leadership Team’s term commences on July 1, 2016. Stay tuned to learn who is now on board!

May 15, 2016: some old and new Leadership Team members held a meeting to discuss Club Success Plan. Follow our Facebook and Instagram account updates to learn more! We also, had the privilege of a fellow Leadership Team Toastmaster from New York, NY – Dilber Shatursun join us for feedback and advice! Lots of ideas were flowing and decisions made. Stay tuned for the announcement of our new Leadership Team and of novelties we jointly came up with! Here is a photo from this meeting on our Instagram page: www.instagram.com/p/BFbKGSiKGB1/

As you can see, our Club had a busy few months (this is only a few of the highlights!) and it looks like there are more exciting surprises ahead. Here are some ways you can learn our news and receive updates:

Meeting Review Blogs: follow our blog posts on this website http://toastmasters.kz/t-blog for an overview of the meetings – created for you by our lovely – Aisha Maukembayeva and Gaukhar Zhunussova, PR Committee’s very own bloggers and new Leadership Team members! Also, we have launched Member Spotlight Series to feature our members and why they love Toastmasters!

Almaty Toastmasters Club on Instagram since April 2016: we are excited to have this new photo & video social media outlet for our news and updates! Follow our Instagram account: @Almaty.Toastmasters and here is the link to our life in photos! www.instagram.com/almaty.toastmasters/and hashtag us along to spread the word out #AlmatyToastmasters

Our Facebook page contains regular updates and news of our Club www.facebook.com/Almaty.Toastmasters/ or if you want to be friends with us there, here is our account to add us on www.facebook.com/toastmasters.almaty

Stay tuned for more news and a schedule of social events! Also, shhhh….don’t tell anyone but we are working on developing news digests into a full-scale newsletter. Please send us your comments, feedback and suggestions – we always welcome ideas and contributions from guests and enthusiasts of Toastmasters! Feel free to e-mail them to us at almaty.toastmasters@gmail.com

Our Regular Meetings are held every Wednesday from 7:30-9:00 PM at Turan University, room #207 at the following address: 16a-18 Satpaev St. Look forward to seeing you there as you embark on your Toastmasters journey with us!

Almaty Toastmasters Spotlight Series: Begzod Hakimov

Almaty Toastmasters Club – Member Spotlight Series will be featuring all the current members of the Club. Stay tuned to learn more about our fellow Toastmasters, why joined the Club, what they like about it and what is their life like outside of the Club activities!

Today’s “spotlight” features Begzod Hakimov, the founding member and Vice President of Education of the first official Toastmasters Club in Almaty, Kazakhstan, which was established in December 2013. We are delighted to present this interview.

Begzod Hakimov
Begzod Hakimov

1. What is your happiest childhood memory?

When I made my first bicycle by various used spare parts at the age of 12.

2. When did you join Toastmasters? What made you join?

I joined the club in 2012. I wanted to develop my communication and leadership skills. Moreover, I wanted to meet a lot of interesting and like-minded people and I was right!

3. Life outside Toastmasters or what do you do for a living?

I am a Language School Director.

4. How do you use communication skills in your daily life?

Communication skills are very useful in my daily life. I use them to get acquainted with new people. To attract new potential clients and strengthen my network. It also significantly helps me to communicate well with my wife and relatives.

  1. What do you like best about our Club? 

The club is really a unique place to grow both personally and professionally. Well-structured self – development program makes the organization quite useful and attractive to many knowledge seekers.

  1. What have you learnt since you joined? Do you feel that you had grown as a communicator or a leader since you joined Toastmasters?

I strongly believe that I have benefited greatly by being a part of this wonderful club. I learnt how to work in a team, how to be a proactive person and how to be a good listener. In addition to it, I had a chance to feel how wonderful it is when you help other people to grow and become more successful individuals. Certainly, I developed both communication and leadership skills which nowadays help in many ways in my daily life.

  1. What are your personal hobbies and interests?

I like reading autobiographical books and playing table tennis.

  1. Can you share random or surprising facts from you biography?

At the age of 4 I tried the first and last cigarette in my life. At the age of 9 I started making my first money.  At the age of 10 I tried to drive the tractor.

  1. If you could have a lunch with anyone, who would that person be and why? 

It is really a good question. I think I would like to meet with my grandfather from my father’s side. Since he was for a long time the Mayor of the city, I would like to ask many questions regarding his management style and secrets of being outstanding person.

  1. What is the most important thing you would tell your friends and family about Toastmasters?

If you want to feel special, join the club and grasp the opportunity the club provides.

Begzod is the current Vice President of Education at Almaty Toastmasters Club and held this role since its establishment in December 2013. He remains the key member of our Leadership team, albeit, his role as VP of Education is wrapping up in July 2016 after our elections. Official members, guests and fellow Leadership teammates have always been acknowledging Begzod’s excellent communication skills and appreciate his belief in Toastmasters programs and its benefits!

Thank you for this interview, Begzod! We appreciate your commitment to Almaty Toastmasters Club and your upcoming work as a Mentorship Program Lead within our Education Committee!

How To Be A Great Toastmaster! Almaty Toastmasters Club – Business Meeting for Members

Business Meeting Agenda on April 6, 2016 (click on the image for an enlarged picture)

On April 6, 2016 – our Leadership Team hosted a Business Meeting for the official members of Almaty Toastmasters Club!

The members of Leadership Team (their term ending on July 1, 2016) made presentations about Almaty Toastmasters Club that included the information on how  to be a great and efficient Toastmaster! We covered topics such as the brand of Toastmasters, our values, what are the benefits of membership, what each project  and role means and how meetings are set up and ran in Almaty, what our Toastmasters Club strategy is and more importantly, our Leadership team shared some  tips and advice for its members.

Here is an agenda and the video of the meeting below.

We hope this was a helpful event for you, our Fellow Toastmasters Club members!

 

Bike-n-beer on Sunday, May 8, 2016 with Toastmasters Club in Almaty & meet a Toastmaster from New York

bicycle-beer-holder Dear Fellow Toastmasters and Friends! ‘Tis the season for bike-n-beer!!

If you are interested in biking up Terrenkur with us, we are meeting at “Extreme” bike rent shop at Satpaev St, corner Nauryzbay batyr St. “Biking”  contact: Zhadra +7 707 675 0099.

Then, come join us at 4 PM for drinks you like (coffee, tea etc – it ain’t restricted to just beer!) to socialize and chat with our special guest – Dilber from  Toastmasters Club in New York! We’re very excited to have this opportunity to share our experience with a U.S. Toastmaster.

Please contact Aliya at +7 777 223 7641 for any questions about this event, overall. We look forward to seeing you and your friends for sports & drinks &  lots of Toastmasters Club chatting as well as learning how things are done Toastmasters Club in New York!

Kudos Almaty Toastmasters Leadership Team: 2013-2016

This amazing, friendly and deeply committed Leadership team was also, the founding team of the Club. It had done an incredible amount of work for the past 5 years to make Almaty Toastmaster Club happen and later, keeping it together, developing it and then, officially registering the Club in US in December 2013. The Almaty community needs to know who they are.

Let’s give our kudos and help show your appreciation to all of them:

Tom Bartkoske – President
Begzod Hakimov – VP Education
Aliya Shaikhina, VP Public Relations
Olga Kim – VP Membership
Greg Heaver – Treasurer
Yadykar Abdirakhmanova – Secretary
Ilyas Batyrov – Sergeant of Arms
Daulet Mukanov – founding member and the unofficial Social Events Coordinator

Left to right  (back row): Daulet Mukanov; Ilyas Batyrov, Greg Heaver, Tom Bartkoske, Begzod Hakimov         (first row): Aliya Shaikhina, Olga Kim, Yadykar Abdirakhmanova
Left to right (back row): Daulet Mukanov; Ilyas Batyrov, Greg Heaver, Tom Bartkoske, Begzod Hakimov                (first row): Aliya Shaikhina, Olga Kim, Yadykar Abdirakhmanova

Thank you for all your hard work! You showed us what true commitment and teamwork truly means.

On May 1, 2016 our Club voted in a new Leadership Team. Stay tuned to find out who is on board: who stayed, who’s new and who will choose to focus on their speech and leadership projects, instead, from now on!

In the meantime, here is a traditional “fun” photo pose. Everyone is welcome to comment below about your Toastmasters’ experiences you shared with them, they will appreciate it :)

Traditional "fun" pose. it was a pleasure working with you, fellow Toastmasters and friends! Thank you for the opportunity to serve you all.
Our traditional “fun” pose! It was a pleasure working with you, Fellow Toastmasters and Friends! Thank you for the opportunity to serve you all.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Almaty Toastmasters Spotlight Series: Daulet Mukanov

Almaty Toastmasters Club – Member Spotlight Series will be featuring all the current members of the Club. Stay tuned to learn more about our fellow Toastmasters, why joined the Club, what they like about it and what is their life like outside of the Club activities!

Today’s “spotlight” features Daulet Mukanov, the founding member and recently appointed Sergeant of Arms of Toastmasters Club in Almaty, Kazakhstan, which was established in December 2013. We are delighted to present this interview.

1.      What is your happiest childhood memory?

When I first went abroad to Saint Petersburg, Russia at the age of 10

2.      When did you join Toastmasters? What made you join?

I joined in 2013. I wanted to maintain and improve my English level, presentation skills and meeting new people

3.      Life outside Toastmasters or what do you do for a living?

I am an engineer geologist

4.      How do you use communication skills in your daily life?

It helps my interpersonal skills and being able to present in front of the public

5.      What do you like best about our Club?

Friendly atmosphere,  structure and decent English

6.      What have you learnt since you joined? Do you feel that you had grown as a communicator or a leader since you joined Toastmasters?

I think that it has definitely helped to my personal growth as a communicator. Even though there is still a room to improvement

7.      What are your personal hobbies and interests?

I like going to the gym, reading books in various fields and mountain hiking.

8.      Can you share random or surprising facts from you biography?

I have 25% of tatar blood in me. When I was a kid I liked watching soap operas

9.      If you could have a lunch with anyone, who would that person be and why?

I think meeting with Kanysh Satpayev would be a good idea for me

10.  What is the most important thing you would tell your friends and family about Toastmasters?

If you will be diligent enough Toastmasters will surely help you to grow up as a person

Daulet is the current Sergeant of Arms at Almaty Toastmasters Club. He has been a very active member of the Club, helping previous Leadership team from the time of the Club foundation. He was organizing many hiking trips for Toastmasters community in Almaty, and our official members, guests and friends have all appreciated his excellent hiking route guidance.

Thank you for this interview, Daulet! Your teammates and Club members appreciate your calm personality and commitment to our Club and we rely on you for more hiking trips in the future. Good luck with your new Leadership Team role!