A visit to Agrofest and an expert recollection of it has won Rachad Pinder top honours in a Toastmasters competition.
The competition, which took place recently at the St Michael’s School, was focused on developing students’ ability in public speaking and impromptu speeches.
Pinder, a 15-year-old Deighton Griffith Secondary School student, was the only male in the competition.
He admitted he was unsure about entering the competition, but was glad he eventually did.
“At first I didn’t want to enter because that isn’t really my thing. But I decided to do it after some encouragement from my principal and my parents,” the teenager said.
Pinder said while he didn’t have to give much thought to coming up with a theme, a lot of planning and hard work went into writing the speech.
“I chose the theme myself and I titled it ‘Agroreflections’. Agrofest was the first thing that came to my mind because it had recently happened. I spoke about the food, the people, the vendors, you name it,” he said.
The shy but brave young man told Barbados TODAY he was always confident he was going to come out on top.
“It had to have a good introduction, body and conclusion, and mine was the best. I always felt like I was going to win going into the competition,” he added.
Pinder, the stepson of experienced scriptwriter and dramatist Carl Alff Padmore, said he was thankful for all the support and help he received from his family and principal.
“They all helped me out so much, and I know I couldn’t have done it without them,” he said.
The teenager’s stepfather said he was extremely proud of his son’s latest achievement.
“I knew that once he applied all the things he would have learnt in the programme, and the hard work that we saw him put in at home, that he would have done a great job. We prayed for him just before he went into the auditorium and we were always encouraging him. He’s a big fighter. We thought that he would have done well and he did do well, so excitement is in the air,” he said.
“When you look at it, a lot of these speech competitions are won by women. So when you find a young man being dedicated to speech and drama, you should feel proud. We are always saying the negative things about young people, but when you can hear the positive things about young people it shows that they are grounded and I feel good as a theatre person that he’s doing a similar thing,” the proud father added.
As for whether his son would follow in his footsteps, he referred to his son as “Mr Drama”.
“He can imitate people, he can imitate voices, and he’s good at creative writing. We do see a future for him in that aspect. He loves creativity. We are happy that he has done well, and we would like him
to use these skills to further who he is as an individual.”
His mother Deandrea Pinder also felt a sense of pride.
“It was a long, hard process, but we were always confident that he was going to win. We are so very proud of him,” she said.