NI Final Soroptimist Public Speaking Competition



On Saturday 8th February Catherine Turkington in Lower Sixth took place in the Northern Ireland Final of the Soroptimist Public Speaking Competition. Catherine qualified for the final after winning the Ballymoney and District heat back in November 2019.


In total, twelve competitors each representing the different clubs and areas of Northern Ireland took part in the final. Each finalist had to deliver a prepared speech of between four and six minutes on a topic from a choice of six possible titles. Also, each competitor had to deliver an extempore speech of between one and two minutes on a topic that they were given on the day.


Catherine delivered an engaging and heart-felt speech on the topic, “Overfed or underfed – a modern day issue!” In her speech she addressed the complex problem of how many people are overeating whilst in other countries people are struggling to put food on their tables. Her speech was particularly poignant as she shared with us her own personal experiences from her volunteer work in Fiji last Summer.


The extempore topic this year was, “Is trolling a modern day phenomenon or has it always been around?” This provided a wide range of responses and the competitors dealt with this challenging part of the competition admirably.


We are delighted to announce that Catherine was the runner up at the final. She was presented with The Betty Hudson Memorial Cup, a gift and a bursary of £100. To come second in Northern Ireland is a fantastic achievement and the whole Rainey community is very proud of Catherine. Congratulations, Catherine on this brilliant achievement and for representing the school so well. Thank you for the tremendous amount of work that you and your family put into preparing for the competitions – all the hard work paid off!


Also, we would like to take this opportunity to congratulate the winning student from Lisburn and District and the student from Newtownabbey District who came third and indeed all the competitors who took part. It is a massive achievement to take part in the Northern Ireland Final of such a significant and long-standing competition.
Thanks also to all the Soroptimists from Ballymoney and District who have been so supportive and to everyone involved in the organisation and running of the event. The Soroptimist Public Speaking Competition truly helps to develop the speaking skills and the confidence of young people and all the Soroptimists are most encouraging and welcoming.


Once again, well done, Catherine on your great success. We hope you continue with public speaking for many years to come!