Three young men have made it their mission to help students and others in the art of communication-English communication that is. Enter ‘The Orators Club.’ The brain child of Ali Malik, Affaan Sherwani and Abdur Rehman Chaudhry. These men have a passion for public speaking and want to share their skills with others so that people can overcome the hurdles they face when communicating in English.
In Pakistan, from public schools to the local madrassah, the art of oration is considered an important part of a student’s grooming. ‘The Orator’s Club’ claims to provide individuals with modules to address their specific needs
Sherwani, who is a student at the Lahore School of Economic (LSE), said there was a dire need to address the communication gap in our society. Speaking with The Express Tribune, Sherwani lamented that it was unfortunate that our youth were not open to ideas. He said students often lack confidence which hinders their expression. “Debating is a form of public speaking,” he added.
According to Sherwani, the biggest motivator to speak with confidence comes from knowing and believing in yourself.
Malik, a 23-year-old graduate from LSE, said the club would not only improve communication skills but would also aim to provide clients with a healthier thought process by focusing on self improvement.
The club was started in July 2009 when universities were closed due to security concerns.
Rehman, also a student at LSE, said public speaking required a hold on general knowledge, analytical thinking and formulation of opinion and justification. He said a good speaker should recognise his target audience and aim to strike a balance between logic and emotion.
Their youngest student, so far, has been an 11-year-old girl who enrolled in to improve her English speaking skills. Hanan said it was inspiring to see the diverse collection of students at the courses.
Sherwani said that even at the corporate level there was a lack of appropriate expression. This, he added, hinders innovation and productivity.
The club holds sessions at the Aligarh Public School, where a four hour class is held once a week. Each session costs Rs1,000. Malik said the fees were kept low to make the club accessible to all. Students from LSE, Kinnaird College, Punjab University and the Foundation for Advancement of Science and Technology University have attended courses.
Sherwani hopes to offer customised services to professionals in various fields in the future.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 9th, 2011.