The Soroptimist Ireland Girls’ Public Speaking Competition has been running for over 40 years and is the result of North-South Soroptimist co-operation when Mildred O’Brien SI Bray (President SI ROI) and Marie Brownlee (President SI Northern Ireland) decided that there should be a competition to encourage girls to speak in public.

The Competition is a three-stage event with local, regional competitions leading to a national final. A selection of topics is circulated to schools and each competitor can choose. A 6-minute speech is presented at the competition on the topic of choice and adjudicated by a panel of 3 judges. Impromptu competitions are held at the regional and national finals.

The competition encourages girls to develop the skills to speak effectively and articulately with clarity and conviction. This enables them to improve their self-confidence and personality which in turn will enhance their career opportunities.

A choice of topics is provided for the competition. Each contestant chooses one topic and she carries this topic through to the Regional Heat and National Final if she qualifies for either or both. 

All clubs hold their Local Heat before the end of November.  Two girls in each club qualify to represent their clubs in the Regional Heat. 

The Regional Heats are held on a Saturday or Sunday in January or February 2024. Two girls qualify at each of the four Regional Heats to go forward to the National Final. The National Final will be held in Dublin on 9th March. The outright winner’s club hosts the National Final the following year and decides on the date and venue.

ENTRY: Participants should be in their 4th, 5th or 6th year in a second-level school. The entry form and Parental/Guardian consent form should be completed and returned to the Public Speaking organiser in your school. S/he will make contact with the local (or nearest) Soroptimist Public Speaking Convenor who will forward a ‘school pack’ with all relevant details to participating schools.

The closing date for entries is 31st October 2024. Download the Entry Form and Parental Consent Form below.

TIME: Prepared speeches must be NO LESS than 4 minutes, nor exceed 6 minutes; otherwise, a penalty may be incurred. 



■  Certificates will be awarded to all participants.

■ Two qualifying speakers from the Local Heat will each receive a Regional Qualifier’s Certificate and a prize.

■ A third speaker will be selected as a reserve. 


■ Certificates will be awarded to all participants at the Regional Heat.

■ Two qualifying speakers from each of the four Regional Heats will each receive a National Qualifier’s Certificate and a prize.

■ A third speaker will be selected as a reserve.


■ National Finalist Certificate and gift will be awarded to each finalist. 


■ Perpetual Mildred O’Brien Trophy.

■ Apple iPad and Winner’s Certificate. 

Regional and National Finals 2024

During January 2024 the Regional Finals took place in Ballina and Drogheda and further Regional Finals will take place in Wexford
on 3rd February and Killarney on 11th February.

The National Final will take place in Dublin on 9th March.

We would like to thank SCF Global Campus for their generous support.

Soroptimists transform the lives and status of women and girls through
education, empowerment and enabling opportunities.