What is the Speakers Bureau? The Speakers Bureau is a student-led initiative run by the Centre for Human Rights Research. The purpose of the Speakers Bureau is to connect students throughout Manitoba in grades 7-12 with educational presentations relating to human rights, Aboriginal law and rights, the Charter etc.

What is my role as a Speakers Bureau volunteer? Law or Master of Human Rights students who volunteer with the Speakers Bureau plan and deliver presentations. However, the level of involvement is flexible, and volunteers are also able to use presentations that are ready-to-go and prepared by previous volunteers.

What’s the commitment like? Some of our volunteers deliver one presentation over the course of the year, others have delivered 10.

How long are presentations and when are they? Presentations will often range between 30-60 minutes. They are typically delivered during school hours (8:30 – 3:30 p.m.). Dates can vary, but often they can be scheduled according to your availability.

What kind of supports/resources can I access if I want to make my own presentation? Prof. Karen Busby is available to students wishing to discuss a presentation topic. Presenters are also encouraged to deliver “test” presentations to the Speakers Bureau co-ordinator, and can get help from the co-ordinator to build a presentation (email to set up a meeting time).  The co-ordinator can provide you with some slides from previous presentations and here is a list of participatory activities.

Do I have to present alone? If you are comfortable presenting alone, that is fine, but working with partners/small groups is also encouraged.

What are some of the benefits of getting involved with the Bureau? First and foremost, presentation skills! This is one of the only opportunities first-year students will have to practice their presentation skills, and one of the few regular presentation opportunities for upper-year students. Students who become involved with the Bureau are able to utilize class material for many of the presentations (helping students to learn the material and study), as well as learn by teaching. Volunteers who deliver two presentations are eligible for co-curricular recognition. Find out more here: http://umanitoba.ca/student/studentlife/ccr.html

How do I sign up for a presentation? As presentations become available, they will be advertised to the Speakers Bureau email list-serve. They will typically be assigned on a first-come, first-serve basis.

I know an awesome high school/junior high teacher – can I reach out and connect with them to set up a presentation? We encourage our volunteers to make use of any connections they have. Let us know in advance that you will be reaching out, and keep us posted on the conversation! If you are invited by a rural school, we can often reimburse your mileage if you submit an expense claim promptly to the Centre for Human Rights Research office assistant.

If you have more questions about the Bureau: Contact the co-ordinator at chrrspk@umanitoba.ca

At the end of the academic year, please give us feedback on your volunteer experience and how we can improve the program.