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A look into this year’s GibTalks

Gib Talks 2019(Photo John Bugeja)

Tomorrow 17 speakers will be on the GibTalks stage at the John Mackintosh Hall, giving an insight into their lives, careers and interests.

The event is organised by Julian Felice and Gibraltar Cultural Services and features broad range of local speakers who will be giving 15-minute talks and 10-minute vox pops.

Host Julian Felice will open the talks tomorrow at 10am with a 10 minute talk.

Each speaker has given an insight into their talks.

Sally Holmes

Sally Holmes Gibraltar Rhythmic Gymnastics Head coach. Road to Games is about my journey with my gymnasts, parents and their families building up to the most important competitions of their lives.
The training is intense, but we always find time to have some laughs along the way. I will be talking about the build-up to the Commonwealth games and 2012 Olympic games.
We have travelled to so many places to qualify, have made some amazing friends from other commonwealth nations and my gymnasts have been successful in achieving their targets and goals.
These gymnasts have been the inspiration to the younger gymnasts who have watched them train and compete and who have strived to emulate them and to compete themselves in the Games.
I could not have been so successful without the dedication of the gymnasts and parents; they have made my job as coach easier.

Christine Vasquez

Over the past 30 years, there have been numerous changes in broadcasting. This is what I shall be talking about. From a computer-free, pre-Google newsroom, that dealt with fax and used blue paper on the news to avoid reflection from the lights, to where we are today.
I aim to examine the different challenges over the years and the changes to a social media-savvy world, where everyone captures immediacy on a mobile phone.
I’ll include anecdotes of the behind-the-scenes reality of broadcasting and also of the excitement of the job, which at times places you at the heart of the action.

Kaylan Gonzalez

My story is one of healing and recovery from post-traumatic stress disorder.
The long journey of learning about my self, my body and my mind.
Overcoming challenges and obstacles with alternative therapy.

Colin Ramirez

If you want to know a bit more about what really happens behind the scenes at the Gibraltar Fire and Rescue Service, and what else we do apart from playing volleyball, make sure you pop by John Mackintosh Hall on Saturday morning.
I will be talking to you about who we really are, what it really means to be a Firefighter in a small and close-knit community such as Gibraltar, our training in preparation for the challenges we face, the dangers that we are exposed to if or when we lower our guard, and our thought processes when we are deployed to an emergency incident, as a Firefighter and as an Incident Commander.
To finish off my talk, I will very briefly speak about my particular role in all of this, as the Chief Fire Officer.

Meenal Viz

Born and raised in Gibraltar, Dr Meenal Viz has built her profile as an activist and campaigner through her work during the Covid-19 pandemic.
In March 2020, she campaigned tirelessly to protect NHS healthcare workers, especially those from ethnic minority backgrounds whilst six months pregnant.
Her desire to fight for justice and hold politicians to account came about after the death of her colleague, Nurse Mary Agyapong who was pregnant and working on the frontline.
In December 2020, Dr Meenal Viz changed the law by working with the British government to create guidelines which ensured adequate protection for healthcare workers and tailored guidelines for healthcare workers from ethnic minority backgrounds.
Meenal’s desire to campaign was fuelled by the fact that she was going to give birth and she wanted her daughter to come into a world where she knew how important it is to fight for the truth and stand up for those who don't have a voice.

Brahmin Krikaz

I knew from a young age that wanted to be a successful young man linking Africa with Europe at the business level. I began working towards my goal by starting the Gibraltar Morocco Business Exchange initiative in collaboration with my partners at the Gibraltar Morocco business association, based in Gibraltar, and the Strait of Gibraltar Association based in Tangier, Morocco.
I am a 34-years-old young man with a background in Law and a university degree, studying Private - Public law and Business.
Why Gibraltar Should adopt a South Policy and invest in Morocco?
2-hours flights to Paris and London from Morocco
7-hours flights to Dubai and New York.
Tanger Med is the 5th best port of the Mediterranean Sea.
Largest port in Africa is in Morocco, with an 8.5 million containers capacity.
Morocco hosts the first car manufacturer in north Africa, and
Morocco is 1st in north Africa in terms of infrastructure quality.

Paul Balban, Minister for Transport

Sowing the seeds for change, trying to create equity within the urban landscape.
A driving instructor and a taxi driver in a past life, a classic car lover enthusiast trying to strike a balance in favour of a better, greener future.
But also, a dietitian by profession with a passion to promote healthier living.
The car has a very valuable, sometimes vital role for many in our society, for transporting our families or the more vulnerable, or to go shopping, but as a vehicle of single occupancy and for all those unnecessary trips, the car is also responsible for a vast deterioration in the quality of our lives.
With the right infrastructure there is much to gain, both physically and environmentally by creating a better walking experience and by giving life to the bicycle lane in Gibraltar.
These improvements may just be the thing that evokes change in at least a few, at first and will surely help us make inroads into greener and healthier transport options, for those who dare or simply wish to try.

Eric Rowbottom

I am very honoured to have been asked to talk at this year’s GibTalks.
The title of my talk is ‘Challenge’.
I will be talking about the biggest challenge of my life.
A challenge that takes courage and determination and is riddled with problems and pitfalls.
A challenge many years in the making!
I don’t want to give much away (you’ll just have to wait until Saturday) but it might not be what the audience expects!

Nyree Turnock Robinson

The talk will centre around the value of Play within a Health setting.
It will outline the physical and mental health benefits of Creative Arts Therapies.
Defining how these playful Allied Health Professionals work, by sharing personal experience within the Arts Therapies, both locally and internationally.
I will path the journey of pioneering in Gibraltar and how I presented it to the community, in a playful, yet serious way.
I will explore how it has been received by the community at large, from the early years in 2000 up until recent years.
The talk aims to be playful, insightful, informative and hope the audience is able to take something valuable.
Hoping to share some of my knowledge on a subject that has captivated me for over 20 years and which I am extremely passionate about.

Roy Clinton, GSD shadow minister

Roy Clinton was first elected into Parliament in 2015 after retiring from a career in finance. Although his main role is shadowing public finance he has an interest in mental health issues and has actively encouraged debate on the subject introducing a Private Members Motion in Parliament on the experience of service users in 2016.
Inspired by the UK ITV Mental Health campaign ‘Britain Get Talking’, Roy in his talk will explore the idea that we can help our own mental health and that of others by simply having that open conversation.
Whereas physical pain and bleeding open wounds receive immediate attention we often neglect those invisible afflictions that affect our mental health and that of others.
The idea is that just by talking positively and openly about mental health we can all make a difference.

Remi Aiyela

Turn on the television and it is constant bad news.
Cost-of-living crisis, war, mass shootings and on and on it goes.
It’s no surprise that we are seeing a progressive rise in anxiety and other mental health disorders.
Depression affects more than 264 million worldwide.
In this talk, I will set out the link between quality relationships and good mental health, and I will give my 5 hacks for building better relationships.
These are tools which, if practised regularly, will help you transform your relationships, whether in your personal life or at work.
This in turn will help make you happier and healthier, making those around you also happier, leading to a virtuous circle of happiness.
You can be part of that revolution by transforming your own relationships.
And to do that, you need to change how you communicate.
That’s why you can’t afford to miss this talk.

Dulcie Edwards

It was evident that dance remains the most sex-differentiated activity, entrenched in stereotypes and gendered practices. Based on deeply-rooted beliefs about what is acceptable masculine identity in our society.
With its perceived feminine nature, dance causes many men to feel fearful of it and therefore reluctant to take part.
Providing access to dance for boys is a major step forward in lessening the gender gap.
If boys are to achieve the same level of success as girls, we simply cannot hope that they will accept what is currently on offer and join in.
What is required is a consistent approach that works against the negative cultural perception, taps into the energy, expression and physical creativity dormant within many boys, yet acknowledges the genuine discomfort many of them feel when they are asked to dance.
It takes time to build a culture of acceptance and respect around dance for boys and there is no quick fix.
We try to work towards the moment where equity is reached.

John Ghio

Let me take you back to the 29th August 2022. It’s a bank holiday Monday, and I’m having dinner at my favourite restaurant. Just shortly after 2200 hours, I get the first notification of an ongoing issue in the Bay.
Gibraltar is the biggest bunker port in the Mediterranean by volume delivered.
In the 24 hours preceding the incident, we had 58 port calls, including 29 bunker supply operations, 14 crew change operations, and many other activities.
The Gibraltar Port Authority (GPA) has a dedicated team of professionals on duty 24/7, 365 days a year.
They have at their disposal an integrated network of hardware, which is used to constantly monitor activities in the bay and in the port.
With some omissions due to the ongoing prosecution case, this talk goes over the work of the GPA on that night and early morning following the incident.

Djamal Marcel Adib

My name is Djamal Marcel Adib and I am a professional forex trader and fund manager. My speech for 'Gibtalks 2023' will be about "Consciousness & the methods of Carlos Castaneda".
Castaneda was an anthropologist at UCLA who spent several years in Northern Mexico with an indigenous Yaqui shaman named "Don Juan de Matus".
He consequently wrote several books, including an international best-seller called "Journey to Ixtlan: The lessons of Don Juan".
Apart from the fact that these books are highly unique and fascinating, Castaneda documented five distinct methods which will allow you to expand your consciousness without the use of any substances.
We live in a time where we get bombarded with information, with news and with noise.
This increases the "chatter" in our minds and blocks our access to 'silent knowledge'.
Castaneda's methods allow us to change that and to ultimately achieve "mastery of intent".

Annie Green

Annie worked at the Caleta Palace Hotel in the 1980s, but her time in Gibraltar came to an end in 1989 when she married an Army officer and moved to the UK. She then spent the next decade living in a variety of garrisons in Germany and the South of England.
In 2002, she volunteered to help at the Visitors Centre at a specialist sex offenders prison in Cambridgeshire and it was there that she was offered a job as the Volunteer Coordinator.
Her experiences at this prison had a profound effect on her life and, for the first time, Annie found herself advising some families to seek the help of Childline.
Shortly after returning to Gibraltar in 2007, she volunteered as a Listener at Childline (Gibraltar) but for the last few years, she has been the charity’s Co-Chair.
Last year was the busiest year that Childline has ever had.
Annie has a fascinating story to tell…

Michelle Rugeroni

My talk is called Why Bother? - the title of my podcast’s third series.
I’m sure we’ve all asked ourselves that question, whether it’s work or just life in general.
Then I read a quote saying that someone with a why can put up with almost any how and it really resonated.
My GibTalk is about my why, my journey to becoming a podcaster. It began during the lockdown.
I really missed being a broadcaster and I started listening to Louis Theroux’s podcast and thinking ‘I could do this too’.
There were many obstacles along the way, but I got off my sofa, bought the equipment, and haven’t looked back since.
This talk is about having the confidence and determination to do what you love.
Podcasting has enriched my life, and I hope those of my listeners too, by turning a sofa and a microphone into a platform for people’s stories.

Nuria Harjani

Business owner Nuria Harjani speaks about 'Gratitude Attitude- how to raise your altitude'
A talk on a particular experience close to her heart and how it acts as a reminder to her daily on how gratitude can often change outlook on certain aspects in life.
in 2016, Nuria signed up to a program with Teach for India, a Non-Governmental Organisation focused on providing individuals with an opportunity to serve as full-time teachers to children from low income communities in some of the nation's most under resourced schools.
Without a teaching background, Nuria fundraised and set off to India with certain goals in mind, but a massive turn of events brought about unexpected challenges.

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