Youth Out Loud

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The City of Swan’s Youth Out Loud is a public speaking competition for young people aged 12 to 25 who live, work, attend school or belong to a club in the City of Swan.

As a result of COVID-19, the competition planned for July this year will not run in its usual format.

This year, the competition will be held online and contestants will submit their speech as a video.

Please submit your video, written speech and forms by Monday, August 31, 2020.

To enter the competition, please submit the following using the online registration form below.

  • Entry Form
  • Consent and Release Agreement Form
  • A written transcript of your speech
  • A video of your speech (maximum six minutes), uploaded to YouTube. Please ensure this is uploaded as unlisted/private, so only the judging panel can view it.

For details on how to upload your video, competition rules, judging criteria and more, please read through the information below.

About the competition

The City of Swan’s Youth Out Loud is a public speaking contest for young people aged 12 to 25 who live, work, attend school or belong to a club within the City of Swan. The competition provides young people with a platform to speak out about issues that not only affect them, but their community too.

Speeches can cover topics as far ranging as social media, different world views or the environment, as long as they are relevant to the theme of the competition, which is different each year.

Who can enter?

The spirit of the Youth Out Loud 2020 competition is to give all young people a voice. The competition is open to young people aged 12 to 25 from all backgrounds and academic abilities.

In order to be eligible, contestants must live, work, attend school or belong to a club within the City of Swan. The City of Swan encourages ALL young people regardless of social or educational status, to enter.

The competition is run in four categories – Junior, Intermediate, Senior and Master.

  • Junior, 12-13 years
  • Intermediate, 14-15 years
  • Senior, 16-17 years
  • Master, 18-25 (as of June 30, 2020)

How does it work?

Contestants are asked to video themselves presenting their six minute speech relevant to the theme, “self.”  Speeches must be at least four minutes and 30 seconds to be considered.

Contestants who go more than 30 seconds over time will have 10% of their points deducted, and another 10% for every 10 seconds thereon. You are also asked to submit a written/typed transcript of your speech along with your video.


There will be a first, second and third prize in each category:

  1. First place - $200
  2. Second place - $100
  3. Third place - $50

An overall winner will be announced, who will win an additional $100 prize and will have their name engraved on the Charlie Gregorini Memorial Shield.

Prizes will be gifted as Coles Myer Gift Cards, which can be used at a range of stores.

Winners will be notified by phone and their prize will be posted via registered Australia Post. Winning speeches will be published on the City of Swan’s website.

How to enter

Entry to Youth Out Loud is on the online form on this page. 

Complete and submit the items listed below online by Midnight on Monday, August 31 to be included in the competition:

  • Signed and completed Entry Form
  • Signed and completed Consent and Release Agreement Form
  • A written/typed transcript of your speech
  • A link to a video of your speech (maximum six minutes), uploaded to YouTube.

The theme: self

Youth Out Loud 2020 asks young people to deliver a speech that explores the concept of self. Explore your own identity and what makes you who you are, what pressures you feel on your sense of self and self-reflection. What have you learned in self-isolation?

The contestant can discuss something they are passionate about as long as it references the theme.

It is important to remember that Local Government is your audience and a reference to the role of local government in relation to your topic/the theme, and a local community focus is strongly recommended.

In particular, a call to action for the City would be positive – what action would you like to see taken from your speech? What would you like to see the City do? What would you like to see other young people do as a result of your speech?

The judging

There will be a panel of three to four judges for each category. The panels will include City of Swan Councillors, a City Youth Development Coordinator, a member of the City’s Youth Leadership Committee, people from the youth work sector and other community members.

The judges will be looking at three aspects of the contestant’s speech. Below are the assessment criteria for judges, to give you an idea of how you will be assessed.  However, they are not conclusive as to what makes a great speech – great speeches will go above and beyond the framework stated here.

Assessment criteria

  • Do you communicate a solid argument with convincing conclusions?
  • Do you show a depth of knowledge about your chosen topic?
  • Is your speech relevant to the competition theme?
Manner and presentation
  • Do you make effective use of your voice to communicate (tone, pitch, clarity, volume etc - are these used appropriately and with flexibility?)
  • Do you have a confident presence, effective gesturing, use palm cards appropriately, and know your speech well?
  • Are you logical, persuasive and do you achieve your purpose to inform and make an argument?
  • Do you display sincerity and speak with conviction?

Toastmasters International have provided some useful public speaking tips.

Video criteria

  • Your speech must be all your own material
  • Your speech must not contain any offensive material - swearing, sexual content, racism, gender or religious vilification
  • Ensure your microphone is working or close so the judges can hear your speech clearly and make sure there is no background noise
  • Video only from your waist up to your head
  • Do not incorporate music or any visual effects, no opening titles or credits – keep it simple
  • You can get a friend, parent or guardian to help video
  • Record your video in wide-screen/landscape rather than portrait
  • The video can be in any of the formats accepted on YouTube (e.g. .MOV .MPEG4 .MP4 .AVI .WMV .MPEGPS .FLV and more)
  • Check out 9 Tips for a Better Video from Toastmasters.

How to upload your video to YouTube

  1. Log in to your YouTube account
  2. Click on the video icon at the top right-hand side of the window, which can be found next to your user icon, messages, apps, and notifications
  3. Click ‘upload video.’
  4. Then, press ‘select files to upload’ to find the video file saved on your computer. Or, you can drag and drop it into the window.
  5. Enter a title for your video
  6. Click through the options, do not add any video elements
  7. You can either choose to make your video public or unlisted (if you select unlisted, anyone with the link can see the video but it will not be found with searches)
  8. Copy your video link so you have it ready when you submit your entry
  9. Click save.

Conditions of entry

  • Contestants must complete the required entry form and agree to abide by the conditions of entry in order to have their submission accepted.
  • Contestants must fit the age of their category, and must meet one or more of the following criteria:
    • Live within the City of Swan,
    • Work within the City of Swan,
    • Attend school within the City of Swan, or
    • Belong to a club within the City of Swan.
  • Contestants’ speeches must be their own original work.
  • The judges’ decision is final.
  • Contestants are to provide a written/typed transcript of their prepared speeches with their video entry
  • The City of Swan reserves the right to reproduce and use contestants’ speeches (for the purposes of promotion, advocacy and celebration).
  • An appropriate smart casual dress code is asked of all contestants. We encourage contestants to wear a formal version of the uniform from their school, club or youth service they are representing.

Further information

These guidelines aim to give you an idea of what to expect for the Youth Out Loud public speaking competition. Please complete and submit your entry online by Friday, June 5.

Please contact Annie Martella for any further queries.

Annie Martella, Youth Development Officer
Phone: 0419 953 973


Click here to view form.