First Online Meeting

First Online Meeting by Gavel Mora

By Madhushika Munasinghe








Love finds its way through all dark and hardships. Gavel finds its way to keep the family together and share the warmth through all hurdles. Gavel never stops. It was a lovely evening during the boring quarantine days. Because we, all the Gaveliers knew, boring quarantine was going to give us a break, with two wonderful hours with our beloved Gaveliers as well as our beloved alumni.



President Amaya Dharmasiri started the meeting welcoming all and reminding us if it were normal, we would be commencing our newest flagship event “ChapterX” at the civil auditorium at the moment. The future is unpredictable and things may go way more different than we ever imagine. There, instead of the flagship event ChapterX, Gavel Mora was taking a more unexpected step, conducting the very first Gavel Online Meeting.

After welcoming all, president Amaya gave a brief introduction to the new members and alumni about the new segment added to Mora Gavel Meetings, “Open Mic”. Open mic focuses on improving the skills of members, beyond the traditional speeches. Then she introduced the Toastmaster for this special evening, Nikhila Dharmadasa, mentioning that he was the one, who came up with the idea of conducting an Online Gavel Meeting. As the gavel can not be handed over in the virtual platform, signifying the handing over the control, President Amaya made Nikhila the host of the meeting.

Nikhila commenced his role, sharing some valuable tips, to safeguard ourselves during this crisis. He asked everyone to wash hands frequently for 20 seconds, not to go outside and to reduce social contact. Then Nikhila introduced the role players for the day, General Evaluator – Isuru Dissanayaka, Timer – Nirodha Rajamanthri, Ah counter – Shehan Paul and the Grammarian – Chamuditha Benaragama. Chamuditha introduced the word of the day to the participants, “Irrevocable” which means, not being able to change.

Next, it was time for the most exciting session of every Gavel meeting which is the Round-robin session. The round-robin session was really interesting, amusing, and engaging. Nikhila, the toastmaster asked everyone to talk about a groundbreaking thing that they have found during the quarantine period. People shared different experiences they had such as Chamuditha realizing that he still loves to read, Kasun realizing that how important were those moments he spent with friends, Natasha finding out that Chinese dramas are better than Korean dramas, Paul finding out pre-planning would never work for him, Shimzara finding out that sometimes being silent is the best way to solve problems, Ruchira realizing he cannot live without fast-food and Malithi realizing the quarantined version of herself is not very different to her usual self. Being locked in houses for almost two weeks, missing all the chit-chats we had with our friends, missing the way we used to live a lot, it was something we all could relate to. We all enjoyed sharing our experiences, the things we have discovered and uncovered about our selves.

Letting everyone enter into the most amazing, mind-blowing session of the day, Nikhila introduced the Table Topic Master of our very first Gavel Virtual Meeting, Vidura Erandika. Marking the beginning of a session full of inspiration, enjoyment, and knowledge, Vidura introduced his wonderful, interesting Table Topics for the day, throwing away the boredom we were drowning in due to quarantine.

Kalana Weerakoon grabbed the opportunity for being the very first speaker of the very first Gavel Mora Online meeting, challenging himself by being the first speaker on his first day at a Gavel Meeting. He talked about a revolutionary idea in the technology sector of making a unique operating system rather than having different platforms. Then Ruchira Thenuja talked about the impact of the Corona Virus on Economy. He shared facts not only about the world as a whole but also about how Sri Lanka would be affected due to this pandemic. He talked about how everything is on hold at the moment and how devastating it could be for the economy.

Then the opportunity of sharing ideas was grabbed by Chathumi Thumbovila, who talked about how she was not a good dancer, but managed her fears and did well. She left us a great message, saying, “Whenever you are scared of doing something, take a deep breath and go for it”. It is something, we, Gaveliers practice every day. That is why Gavel is called as the place where fear becomes passion. We, Gaveliers, challenge our fears every day by making them our passion and our strength.

“Imagine there’s no heaven

It’s easy if you try

No hell below us

Above us, only heaven

Imagine all the people

Living for today”


Akhila Senevirathna started his speech singing the song above, which is “Imagine” by John Lennon. He talked about a world without music and he concluded that if there is nothing called music, the world could be in a catastrophe.

Dineth Mudalige talked about how irrevocable the situation we face at the moment is. He figured out how the things that we considered to be unimportant, became important when the storm came, by describing the things we were facing in the quarantine period. He emphasized that the only thing we could do is to adapt to the change.

Kasun Withana, spoke next, being the first alumnus to speak in this special milestone of Gavel Mora. He started his speech by explaining a song from the movie, “Prince of Egypt”. He explained the similarity of the situation described in the song and pandemic we are facing at the moment. And he mentioned that it is high time for all of us to think about attaining sustainability rather than destroying mother nature.

Then, Kasun Ranasinghe talked about his journey of winning All Island Best Gavel Speaker and pointed out the importance of having a crowd to watch you, to get the full experience of your success. So, sometimes you have to dance watching how others enjoy your dance.

There are three types of futures; namely, Near Future, Middle Future, and Distant Future. It was Chamuditha Benaragama, who shared his experience of realizing the importance of focusing on the middle future where our hopes lie.

Merl Chandana, shared his biggest concern about the world at the moment, which is, the world going to continue as it was before the pandemic, without learning the lessons and COVID-19 pandemic being nothing more than another event in history. He mentioned a speech delivered by Bill Gates at the time of the Ebola outbreak, where Gates warned that the next biggest threat to humankind might be an Epidemic. But the world was not ready to face it.

Amaya Dharmasiri talked about her days, staying at home, without the usual stress of academics and all. She highlighted the fact that we need a healthy amount of stress to be productive than not having motivation at all. The next chance was given to Hashan Rahubaddha who left the participant with the message, “If we learn to dance in the rain, After the rain, there will always be a rainbow.” He shared some of his experiences, proving his words.

The next speaker was Shimzara Zakariya, who said that the invention of the mobile phone was kind of a mistake. She explained the cons we faced due to the mobile phone and how life would be without it. Then Madhushika Munasinghe shared a thought with the participants, saying, that everyone needs a holiday, just to look at themselves and to try to understand themselves.

The last table topic speaker for the day was our beloved alumnus, Rajitha Katugaha. His speech was about, “What if there was no corona, but we were still at home”. He talked about the impact of social media on our lives and how we deal with each other has been changed. He emphasized the fact that this should be a concern for everyone in the future.

After that wonderful table topics session, the Table Topic Master for the day, Vidura, called upon the reports of the timer, ah counter, and the evaluators and then handed over the control back to Nikhila, the Toastmaster of the day.

Then it was time for the newly introduced session, “Open Mic”. Achintha Senadhipathi did his Open Mic which was a Review of the book “Chicken Soup for the Woman’s Soul” and it was evaluated by Merl Chandana. Achintha gave an attention-grabbing opening to his review by sharing one of the quotes from the book, “When demigods are gone, gods arrive.” That quote describes how patience could lead to a successful life. Achintha did a descriptive and informative review about the book and left the participants a message, saying, “Life is not a matter of milestones, but the moments.”

All good things must come to an end. So did our first online gavel meeting. Marking the end of the meeting, president Amaya thanked everyone who participated, and everyone who helped in the process of organizing the online meeting. It was time to take a return ticket to the moment we enjoyed, so, everyone turned on their video and took a Screenshot with the smiling faces of all the Gaveliers who attended the Online meeting.

Gavel is full of awesomeness. Gavel is the game-changer. Gavel is the second family we have. Gavel will never let us feel lonely.  Looking forward to a day without corona, looking forward to a brighter day, the online meeting was a great opportunity to cherish the moments, share the love, warmth, and energy of the Gavel Family and to forget the sorrows for a moment. 399th education meeting of Gavel Mora marked the special milestone of bringing Gavel to the virtual world.