'Kiama Independence Day' Speech and Photo Competition taking place

The Kiama council chambers last year.

The Kiama council chambers last year.

RESIDENTS of the municipality are celebrating Kiama’s independence later this year. 

Therefore, Kiama council has unveiled details of its celebration of the anti-amalgamation campaign of 2016 via a speech and photo competition.

The Kiama Independence Day Speech Contest 2017 seeks to afford all secondary students who live or study in the Kiama municipality an opportunity to improve their confidence and to develop their speech-writing and public speaking skills.

Last October, Kiama council resolved to set aside, each year, the date of February 3 as ‘Kiama Independence Day’ and mark this day with a morning tea and at that time host a public speaking competition on an appropriate topic.

This particular date was suggested, as February 3 last year marked the date of the council merger public inquiry meetings.

Public inquiry meetings regarding the state government’s then proposed merger of Kiama and Shoalhaven councils took place. 

Dozens of Kiama residents registered to speak at the meetings. 

The merger ultimately didn’t proceed. 

According to a report to council’s January extraordinary meeting, Kiama councillor Neil Reilly had met with the manager of library services, the youth worker and members of the library staff to plan the event.

“Due to short timeframes it is now proposed to hold the speech day on May 13, 2017 at The Pavilion...,” council’s report said.

At the extraordinary meeting, councillors noted the proposed change of date of the event.  

The topic for the speeches is ‘What does independence mean to me?’

The competition requires students from years 7 to 12 to submit a five-minute speech by Friday, April 21.

Eight finalists will be selected to speak at The Pavilion on Saturday, May 13 with the winning speaker awarded a trip for three to Vietnam.

“I think it’s important for young people to have experience and build experience in public speaking, because it helps in all sorts of ways – in their life, in job interviews, in their relationships,” Cr Reilly said.

“From a civic point of view, it provides a new generation of people who can express different things about independence… And have the word independence be used as broadly as it can, because it means different things to different people.”

The Kiama Independence Day Photographic Competition 2017 is open to all ages and has the theme of ‘Why I love Kiama’.

Council wants residents to showcase the uniqueness of the area, community and individuals through your lens, and show what you value most about the region.

Entries close Friday, April 21.

Details on how to enter and other information are available at the www.kiama.nsw.gov.au website. 

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