Habs Girls Finalists Produce Student Guide to Public Speaking Competition

When Jamila, Tilly and Talia from Haberdashers' School for Girls won the East Region final of the ESU-Churchill Public Speaking Competition in 2020, they had high hopes for the grand final at Churchill College, Cambridge. 

Students from Haberdashers' School for Girls pictured with, from left, Ameeta Sabharwal, ESU-Churchill Public Speaking Coordinator, Hertfordshire; Anthony Harris, ESU member and volunteer filmmaker and editor; Miss Efstathiou, Head of Lower Sixth at the school; and Jane Easton, Director-General, ESU.


Unfortunately, the pandemic put paid to that but, when Ameeta Sabharwal, ESU-Churchill Public Speaking Coordinator, Hertfordshire, put out a call for ideas on how we could in future attract schools from the wider school community, it sparked an idea. Instead of allowing their efforts to go to waste, the trio decided to produce a guide for new schools taking part in the competition, answering any questions and allaying any fears they might have. Combining videos, an interview and a written booklet, it is intended to provide an introduction to the contest from the student point of view. Hertfordshire branch kindly donated £500 towards the project, which was filmed by Brighton branch member and active volunteer Anthony Harris last month at Dartmouth House. Anthony is now working on the edit and we will be releasing the guide to participating schools very shortly. Hertfordshire branch also presented each girl with a £25 Amazon voucher for their initiative. ‘We were delighted to sponsor this project which has not only furthered the girls’ own presentation and communication skills, but which will be so valuable to countless other students,’ says Ameeta.