The WSDC Team competed in the Christ University Parliamentary Debate (CUPD) Tournament which followed the Asian Parliamentary Format over the weekend of the 19th of February.
Our very own team which comprised of Faye Crawford, Eugene Cloete and Joshua Hendricks made it to the Novice Final and unanimously won the Novice Final with Eugene ranking 9th Best Speaker at the Tournament!
A massive shout out to the SA Head Coaches and the rest of the speakers for this amazing achievement! We are extremely proud of you!
On reflection, 2020 was truly filled with a mix of life’s misfortune and the blessings that we often take for granted. One would have never thought that hosting a physical debating tournament would ever endanger the health of participants or that such a social gathering would be considered illegal. Nevertheless, the quiet determination of volunteers prevailed and debating events changed form to fit the current time we find ourselves in. The Youth Derby tournament, the Covid-19 Discussion Panel, the various international tournaments and our own national tournament are a few examples of the quiet determination of the debating community. Always a fitting reminder that courage doesn’t always roar.
The vision for 2020 is a simple one: to continue facilitating the events we initiated in 2020 and to maintain the good work that has been achieved. Where errors are committed, we will endeavour to right those wrongs as we build an inclusive and diverse community. We also hope to continue the work of bringing provinces such as the North-West and Mpumalanga into the community and helping them start-up the tournaments and leagues that we know bring speakers so much joy and development. I am truly proud of every speaker, adjudicator, and coordinator that made 2020 a year for the record books. I remain hopeful that the year ahead, with its expected ups and downs, will be a good one.
Due to the CoronaVirus Pandemic, the South African National Schools’ Debating Championship was held online. The Championship was held from the 15th-20th of December on the Discord Platform. Though the competition was not without its challenges and we all dearly missed the vigour of being able to meet in person, for the most part, it was an enjoyable and educational experience for all involved. There were many other firsts for the championships besides its online platform. The Free State Province took part in their first final narrowly losing out to a team from South Korea, making the South Korean team the first international team to win a National final. This year was also the first time we had two international teams competing in the finals. Kenya took part in the Senior plate-final losing out to a team from the Gauteng province. It was also the first time we had all of the top 10 junior speakers from one province, Gauteng. The eventual winners of the senior and junior championships were from the Gauteng province. Congratulations to all speakers who took part in the final. We were once again inspired by the level of intellect, compassion and talent participants displayed. It was a difficult challenge moving to an online platform, and our learners took this in great stride and made Nationals 2020 a phenomenal experience.
Without the hard work of our volunteers none of this would have been possible. Thank you to our Chief Adjudicators, Uheli, Shannon and Amaar for their invigorating motions which challenged us. Our Tab masters, Bradley and Lame, were essential to the success of this competition. Finally our immense gratitude to the organising committee, Lebo, Bettina and Rimbi for taking the vision of an online tournament forward.