AREA 26 NEWSLETTER
THE VOICE OF KENTUCKIANA FALL 2011
Your First Fall Assembly
What's going on Oh, I get it! It's all about here?? SERVICE!!
In This Issue:
The topic of our next issue is "The History of AA: Coincidental or Miraculous?" We welcome articles about your experience.
Deadline for submission of articles is December 1, 2011.
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Area 26 Contact Information
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A Brief Survey from your Newsletter Committee:
Please help us serve you better by answering the following questions. You may email your answers to:
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1: Do you know what the newsletter is?
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So, it's the first time you've been to the Area 26 Fall Assembly in an election year.
Congratulations! You're in for a close-up look at AA in action.
In odd-numbered years, the Assembly elects new Area Officers and Alternates, an Alternate Delegate and a Delegate to represent Area 26 at the annual General Service Conference. Each of these individuals has to meet certain eligibility requirements to run for their respective positions, and is elected for a two-year term. (For details on eligibility to run and duties of these offices, see the Area 26 Structure, available at www.area26.net.) These elections aren't intended to be popularity contests. The characteristics that make an AA well known or well liked aren't necessarily the traits that make for a great service worker. Our goal here is to elect candidates who have the knowledge, dedication and ability to do the job properly.
Who can vote?
In Area 26, those who can vote include: GSR's, DCM's, the Area Delegate, Alternate Delegate, Chairperson, Secretary, Treasurer, newly elected DCM's, and Standing Chairpersons.
How does the Area Assembly decide who will serve in what position?
1. The Delegate and Alternate Delegate are chosen by written ballot in separate elections, by a process called the Third Legacy Procedure (see pg. S20 of the AA Service Manual). This is a fairly complex process, but to put it simply, the first candidate who receives 2/3 of the total vote is elected. Sometimes it takes several rounds of casting ballots for a candidate to receive 2/3 of the votes. This Third Legacy process is unique to AA. It is meant to help eliminate politics from these elections, and encourage qualified candidates to run for office.
2. The Secretary and Treasurer are each elected by simple majorities. The runners-up in these elections become the Alternate Secretary and Alternate Treasurer, respectively.
3. The outgoing Delegate becomes the new Chairperson of the Area Assembly.
4. The outgoing Chairperson becomes the Alternate Chairperson.
5. The Area Chairperson appoints the Standing Committee Chairs from among eligible candidates.
(Again, see the Area Structure for eligibility requirements.) Sound boring? This is actually important work that we perform as an Area. We help carry the message by these simple acts.
The strength and durability of AA depends on our selection of humble, trusted servants who are willing to make personal sacrifices to be of service. To quote Darryl M., Alternate Chairperson and Past Delegate, "As long as we as a fellowship keep electing high caliber GSR's, DCM's, Committee Chair People, Delegates and Trustees, and allow our Board to make the decisions that are truly best for Alcoholics Anonymous, then we shall survive as long as God deems us necessary." Melissa B.
God, help me Remember: Service Work helps keep me sober and helps others to achieve sobriety! In our continuing series on the Twelve Concepts: A Discussion of Concept XI 11.) While the Trustees hold final responsibility for A.A.'s world service administration, they should always have the assistance of the best possible standing committees, corporate service directors, executives, staffs, and consultants. Therefore the composition of these underlying committees and service boards, the personal qualifications of their members, the manner of their induction into service, the systems of their rotation, the way in which they are related to each other, the special rights and duties of our executives, staffs, and consultants, together with a proper basis for the financial compensation of these special workers, will always be matters for serious care and concern.
Concept 11 is one of the longest Concepts and in it Bill W. describes in great detail the composition, functions and relationships of: the Standing Committees of the General Service Board; its subsidiary operating boards; the General Service Office and the A.A. Grapevine. You should read the entire Concept in the Service Manual, but if you find it too dry or complex, I strongly encourage you to read the pamphlet titled 12 Concepts Illustrated. It summarizes the concept very well so I won't restate what it says. In this article I'd like to try to relate the Concept to A.A. today, from the General Service Office in New York up to the service structure to your home group.
When the Twelve Concepts were written in 1962, there were five standing Committees of the General Service Board: Nominating; Finance & Budgetary; Public Information; Literature and General Policy. Seven more have been added since then. These committees are made up of Trustees but they cannot do all the work themselves. Other members of the Trustees Committees include directors, staff and consultants. Bill goes on to describe the function of each Committee but in every case he puts great emphasis on the necessity for competent, experienced and knowledgeable Committee members. The same principle applies to every service position from the Delegate to the District Committee Member to your General Service Representative. We should always use good judgment when appointing or electing our trusted servants.
I particularly liked the discussion of the Literature Committee. It helps to know that Committee's focus and purpose when reading about another point of this Concept - the areas of responsibility of and the relationship between our active service corporations A.A. World Services, Inc. and A.A. Grapevine, Inc. This is a very interesting discussion. Bill not only describes how these corporations operate but he provides sound and easy to understand logic for why it is important that the corporations remain separate entities. The focus and function of each is so different that it just makes sense that they operate independently while both come under the direction of the General Service Board. It's a little like the autonomy of our groups, central offices and convention committees.
Next, Bill provides for solutions to four common problems, which could arise in both A.A. World Services, Inc. and A.A.
Grapevine, Inc. The first is that of executive status. Although there are many trustees that serve on many committees, there is only one final decision maker; be it the committee chairperson, the General Service Board Chairman or the General Service Office Manager. He describes the qualities and characteristics of a good executive - and he sets the bar very high! I won't list the traits here but just know that Bill expected only top-notch people to serve at the executive level. And that is still the case today. The interview and selection processes are meticulous and stringent. As the Concept states, these are matters for serious care and concern. Just as we pointed out earlier, we should always use good judgment when appointing or electing our trusted servants.
The next area of concern Bill addresses is the compensation of our paid workers. If we expect our workers to be top quality, we have to compensate them accordingly. This seems rather obvious to me but I know other people who don't feel the same way. The men and women who "work the desks" at the General Service Office are often the most visible people in A.A. They not only have contact with newcomers but also respond to the many inquiries that come in from the Fellowship. They are required to rotate every two years, which I'll discuss a little later, and they are expected to be able to learn each assignment. I want the best people as the face of A.A. and I agree with Bill that their compensation should be in line with similar work in the commercial world.
The third part of this discussion involves rotation. In the Concept, Bill is specifically referring to the staff workers at A.A. World Services, Inc. but at the time, A.A.
Grapevine, Inc. only had two staff workers and the idea of being able to perform all the tasks - or cross training, if you will was less of a concern. The primary reason for the adoption of rotation was the security and continuity of the office. If one staff member leaves, one or more of the others is able to cover, for a time, without a gap in services.
We've all known times when the-onlyperson- that-knows-how-to-do-something retires or gets ill. The result is usually chaos.
Rotation serves our Fellowship well at all levels. It provides opportunities for personal growth and allows other people the opportunity to serve. And it encourages new and fresh input and ideas.
The last point Bill makes about the paid workers, is that they should enjoy full participation. By this he means more than just allowing these workers a voice and a vote in the office, in committees and at the Conference. He means they are afforded equal status as our elected servants. Not only is their livelihood dependent on doing a good job, but also their sobriety. They have unique perspectives because they are in contact with such a cross section of our Fellowship. Their voice is invaluable.
In summary, the inner workings of the "underlying" service structure and its members was very well thought out and is laid out very plainly in Concept Eleven.
And, in my opinion, all of the Concepts are as important to the success of our Fellowship as the twelve steps and twelve traditions. They are not just 'rules' that apply to some vague group of people way up in New York City. They apply to my home group and me as well.
How did you get involved in service?
I was told to clean ashtrays if I wanted to stay sober, which I resented since I didn't smoke, but that started my journey into service. I was shortly promoted to coffee maker, but continued to clean ashtrays for years after. I'd probably clean ashtrays now but my home group is non-smoking these days. Service to a home group may be the most important service we render to the fellowship.
But I assume you mean the service structure in this case. My District and Home group had been inactive for several years, and I had no knowledge of the service structure. One day when I had about 3 years sober, it was announced at a meeting that there was a special meeting being held and the Area 26 delegate would be there. My sponsor and several old-timers appointed several of us to go to this meeting. Billy M., the delegate, gave us a brief lesson in general service and District officers were promptly elected, and I became the alternate DCM for District 14. I have held several positions since at the district and group level, including District 14 Archives Committee chair and GSR for the Late O'clock group, as well as Alternate DCM. At this time I am serving as Area 26 Archives Committee Chair.
Why is service important to you and your sobriety?
Even though in my early sobriety we were not active in the service structure of AA, my sponsor and the other old-timers taught me I had to give back to this fellowship, not just by sponsoring others but by serving the fellowship, whether cleaning up after a meeting, or representing my group. And it is a pleasure, even when it seems a pain in the butt. When I get off my duff and get out of myself for the good of AA, I am always the better for it. One interesting side note, I have noticed in my years of involvement with the service structure: the people who give back at this level have a much lower rate of relapse. It has also broadened my experience in AA, by bringing me into contact with AAs from all over the state and the country. I love AA, and I can never repay the debt of gratitude I owe this fellowship for saving my life. It allows me to help insure that AA will be there for others when they need it.
What is the function of your committee?
We help to carry the message of AA by maintaining the historical accuracy of the AA message as it has developed in Area 26. The Archives Committee of Area 26 is responsible for recommending policies, budgets and procedures in maintaining the collection. Through our committee's group conscience we maintain the responsibility and authority for the use of materials kept in the Area 26 Archival Repository. In this we are guided by AA's primary purpose. We also maintain the collection scope, which states what we will or will not collect, and why. This is not only a guide to what to gather and maintain in our collection, but streamlines our work, keeping the collection from growing full of unrelated and non-relevant material. We encourage the compilation of group and district histories in Area 26, and assist districts and groups with their own archival endeavors.
How did you get involved in service?
I was twelfth-stepped into recovery by someone who was the secretary of his home group. So service became a vital part of my recovery right away. I started emptying ash trays before I could put together more than a few days sober, which took me three or four months. My first home group was the first AA meeting I attended and it was where I found my first sponsor. I was only a month sober when I started wanting to give back to AA what it so freely gave to me. Still, I had to wait until I was sober three months to chair my first meeting. I became group treasurer with about six months of sobriety. I became an IGR (Intergroup Representative) at about three years sober. After two years as IGR, I was elected intergroup co-chairperson. The most challenging service for me came when I was about five or six yours sober and someone asked me to manage our Central Office. About a year later Intergroup and I had a falling out. I dropped out of service almost completely for the next few years. Later I found myself attending a meeting once a month or less. I was involved in other spiritual things and still called my sponsor occasionally. After a few dry years not only could the people around me no longer stand me, I could not stand myself. I helped form a group out of a meeting in a clubhouse and they asked me to be GSR (General Service Representative). The second district meeting I went to, our DCM (District Committee Member) resigned and they asked me to serve as DCM. Two years latter, I got the crazy idea we needed a website committee and my DCM made the motion to add Website to our list of standing committees. The motion passed and our chairperson asked me to chair that committee.
Why is service important to your sobriety?
Service is the third side of the AA triangle. It's like the third leg of a three-legged stool. I was about three years sober when I almost got drunk over a job I hated. I quit the job and was going to get drunk when I called someone in recovery that reminded me I was supposed to chair a meeting the next day. I slammed down the phone and decided to get drunk the next day after the meeting.
I stayed sober after all. Many times when I was at my wits end someone in my home group would show up to go to a meeting or call at just the right time. Service has kept me connected to Alcoholics Anonymous. I was on a twelfth step list once when I actually got a call to help another drunk. I knew I had to stay sober to stay on that list and help others. Most of our twelfth step work comes from someone doing service work. It is truly the life's blood of our fellowship. AA cannot survive without service, and without AA most of us would surely die.
What is the function of your committee?
The Website committee maintains our area website. We also hold workshops concerning the Internet. We have also helped set up a website for an intergroup. Most recently we wrote website guidelines for our area. The project actually took about a year and a half because we could only meet for about an hour every three months. So it really took about eight or ten hours it was just spread out over a long time. My goal was to make it possible for DCMs to update their own meetings on our website and create a website team to update everything else on the site so anyone could chair the committee with little or no knowledge of building or maintaining a website. We now have a meeting database on our website that can be updated by anyone with access to the Internet and the password.
Peace & Love, Jon S.
Archives - David W., Chairperson I want to thank District 3 for all their hard work. Thank you for your service.
This past Friday was the 10-year anniversary of our repository in Lexington at its present location. I have been to the Repository every 3rd Sunday of the month, except when that day has fallen on that of other AA events: i.e. Area 26 meetings. I have had a couple of visitors this last quarter.
On May 14th, I conducted an Archives workshop for District 5 in Bardstown in conjunction with a service workshop that district was holding. I want to say I enjoyed District 5's workshop a lot.
And 10 people remained from the main Workshop for the Archives event, where we covered quite a bit of ground with a great question and answer session. I want to thank District 5 for this opportunity to serve.
Yesterday we had 4 people attend the Archives Committee meeting. As there are no real agenda items concerning Archives from the last General Service Conference, we had a round robin discussion, focusing on some housekeeping issues. We have decided to start a re-catalog and reorganize what we have in the repository. To facilitate this process, the Area 26 Archives Committee has authorized me to purchase a file cabinet and a computer. I am just thrilled with the enthusiasm of this small group.
Once again, I invite everyone to visit the Area 26 Repository. We are open the 3rd Sunday of every month from 12- 4pm and by appointment. Please feel free to contact me to schedule a visit.
Thank you for letting me serve Area 26.
Cooperation with the Professional Community (CPC)
Charlie S., Chairperson
I would like to thank District 3 for hosting the area meeting. The hospitality and the food were both excellent. I would also like to thank those who attended the CPC committee meeting. As always, it is exciting to have the attendees introduce themselves and to hear what is going on in their districts regarding CPC work.
We addressed the reoccurring question, "How do we perform CPC work in such a way that we serve as an attraction to AA, without promoting the program?" The group rallied around the energy that goes into informing and educating those in a position to be able to effect their understanding of AA so that they can help the still suffering alcoholic.
Another reoccurring topic of discussion is whether to sign court papers at group meetings. Mark from District 27 informed us that his group has decided to announce a time designated by the group for signing court papers. Gary from District 25 provided me with copies of sign-in sheets they use for drug court clients. Once signed, the sheet is mailed directly to the drug court to verify the client's attendance. This alleviates the need for a group member to sign a meeting sheet for the courts and therefore, protects the member's anonymity.
We reviewed the CPC service material F-177. A newly released information sheet titled "Alcoholics Anonymous as a Resource for Drug and Alcohol Court Professionals." The literature is available from your GSO or your Central Office. I was able to update the committee on the request from GSO for the Area 26 CPC committee to host the American Association of School Health convention to be held in Louisville, Kentucky, October 12th -15th. I informed the group that I would be asking for help in heading up this project. We discussed the next Area Assembly that will be held in Ashland, KY in October. At that time I will be rotating out of this position.
Next we discussed that I received a request through GSO for more information about AA from a local hospital to be passed on to organ transplant recipients. We discussed the reply letter that I sent as a sample of what CPC work entails.
We had a local professional attend this meeting and he was able to share his experience of his concept of AA before coming to AA and after attending AA.
Again, thank you all for allowing me to serve as your CPC Chairperson and I would like to ask for all of those who attended the committee meeting to please stand and be recognized.
Respectfully submitted, Charlie S.
Cathy B., Chairperson
Thank you to District 3 for hosting this weekend. The food has been great, especially the Western Kentucky barbeque.
We had a great corrections committee meeting on Saturday without any major controversies. In our sharing session, we helped each other with common problems with correctional facilities around the state. We found that many of us had the same issues. The most common problem seemed to be drug talk in meetings, and we came up with various solutions to this problem.
I have learned this last quarter that inmates may receive a free copy of the Grapevine, if they just send a letter to the Grapevine asking for it. I did not bring the address with me, but if you would like the address come and see me after I give my report.
The last quarter has been very busy for the Corrections Committee. The list of our activities includes: *Attending the Spring Fling in Danville at the Recovery Roadhouse. This was a fundraiser for Big Books for Northpoint Training Center. Thanks to Mike L. for organizing this event.
*Attending Howling at the Moon in June, where I gave a brief report.
*Helped present a corrections workshop in Florence.
I received the following requests for help: *A letter from KY State Reformatory was sent to the Lyon Co. library. This letter was then sent to the Western KY Intergroup and then sent to me. Two men agreed to answer this letter.
*Four requests for Big Books from Western KY Correctional Complex were received from GSO in NYC. I passed these requests on to the Western KY Intergroup.
*A request for meetings near Bell County for an inmate who will be released from the Hope Center in Lexington.
*A request for pen pals for inmates at Luther Luckett.
*A request for meetings to be started at Dismas Charities in Lexington.
A new Spanish-speaking group is now active at the Fayette County jail. Thanks to Alberto for starting this meeting.
Two faithful corrections volunteers have retired from service. Joanne G., my sponsor, retired after 19 years of service at the Fayette County jail. Mike L. retired after 17 years of service at Northpoint Training Center. Mike continues to attend the meetings at the Boyle County jail and Fayette County jail. Thanks to both of these faithful trusted servants for their years of work in carrying the message behind the walls.
Changes to Corrections pamphlets were made by the recent General Service Conference and were included in the delegate's report.
In love and service, Cathy B.
Joe O., Chairperson
I'm Joe, Chairperson of the Grapevine committee. Yesterday we had our regular meeting and there were 10 people in attendance.
As most of you may already know, the price for the Grapevine went up the first of July. I think that probably has to do with the results of the survey, because the survey said that we needed the price of The Grapevine to be solid. Also, if you add two of these products, you get a $12.00 discount.
We heard from a young man (possibly from the Hardin County jail), who said that he came upon a Grapevine in jail and that was all the AA material that he had to read for a long time. He said he read that Grapevine over and over. It impressed him enough that he is with us here today.
He felt that he owed the Grapevine that much to share his experience, strength and hope with us.
Cathy sent me the form for a free subscription to the Grapevine for inmates. I made copies for all the guys in my district who take meetings to the jails. It says it is a lifetime subscription but I'm not too sure about that.
We talked about the August issue. The topic for August will be relationships in the rooms of AA.
We also talked about the September issue and that topic will be dealing with loss.
It was suggested at our meeting that if you know of someone who is having a token birthday, you might buy him or her a subscription to the Grapevine.
There is concern that the Grapevine is a little different than it used to be in the past. It used to be the only message in print. Today, we have the Internet, Facebook, etc.
We had a good meeting and I would like to thank District 3 for all of their hard work. My wife and I really do enjoy coming here.
Amy B., Chairperson
Good Morning. I'm Amy B. and I am an alcoholic, currently serving as your Kentuckiana Newsletter chair. I would like to thank District 3 for an awesome weekend.
We began yesterday's committee meeting with a brief review of our last meeting. We then talked about the current printed edition. This edition cost $461.10 to print. This includes 450 copies with staples, 50 copies without staples for corrections facilities and what the committee is most proud of, 25 condensed versions in Spanish for our linguistic district. Thanks Peggy and Gloria from District 15 for helping finally make this possible.
Our next issue comes out in October and will be called "First Fall Assembly." Deadline for submissions is September 1st. The next issue comes out in January and will be titled "History of AA: Miraculous or Coincidental?" Deadline for submission for the January issue is Dec. 1st.
We will continue with our concept articles. Barbara F will write the piece on Concept XI. We will also complete the Committee Chair interviews by splitting the remaining chair people interviews over the next two editions.
As mentioned at the previous meeting we had a very interesting discussion about the newsletter.
We began the discussion by reading the paragraphs from our service manual Area Newsletters and Bulletins found on page S41. We actually had several points we talked about from "What is our purpose and are we meeting it to could we place the newsletter on the website and make it interactive? We realized we actually had more questions than answers.
In order to better understand our purpose and the future of the newsletter we have decided to conduct a survey of three short questions. You will find these questions on the website and in our next edition. We are also requesting that DCM's ask their groups and let us know what groups think. These are the questions we would like to ask:
1: Do you know what the newsletter is?
2: Is the current format (print version) working?
3: Do you read the newsletter?
With the results of the survey we hope to leave the next newsletter committee with a better understanding of how to improve our service to Area 26.
Thank you for allowing me to be of service, Amy B.
George J., Chairperson
The committee would like to express our appreciation to District 3 for hosting the Area this weekend.
After introductions, we discussed the beginnings and purpose of AA literature, starting with the development of the Big Book, the role and scope of the Literature Committee from the Home Group to the Conference and Trustees Committee on Literature. Next we outlined and discussed how conference approved literature is developed and the role of each member and each level of service plays in the process. This discussion involved everyone in attendance and was very exciting. The idea of the AA group literature representative being part of the District literature committee, as outlined in the AA Group pamphlet, was discussed. I was also informed that currently, most District literature committees are a committee of one, the Chairperson.
The next items discussed were the Conference Advisory Action from this year's conference. The committee was highly appreciative to have had the opportunity to be actively involved, having a voice in this process. The committee voted that the word "successfully" be removed from the language in the motion "Atheists & Agnostics successfully sober in Alcoholics Anonymous" for the proposed new literature on Spirituality.
Discussion of Advisory Actions was followed by a review of the Conference Literature committee discussion notes on agenda items considered. The Area 26 Literature Committee found it very hopeful that the same concerns expressed in our committee prior to the conference, in addition to other concerns and ideas, were given careful and thorough consideration. It almost gave us the sense of actually being there, part of the discussion. It was during this discussion that we found humor in the idea that at some point or another most, if not all of us, get the feeling that "we need to straighten out AA" only to realize that AA is a Spiritual Entity under Spiritual authority and all is well.
We reviewed the updated report on e-Book technology, Digital Rights Management, other literature purchases, and an online store.
And finally, we reviewed and discussed the service material, AA, Resource for the Drug & Alcohol Professional. In our discussion it was noted that this material clearly states AA's Singleness of Purpose and the fact that "AA does not provide recovery for other Addictions
" It was decided that this piece could be returned with "proof of attendance" sheets to appropriate institutional staff persons. This brochure is downloadable from AA World Service website.
We attended a Workshop in District 27, where we had 9 in attendance.
We would like to express appreciation for our Delegate's passion on the amount of information shared with us so that the committee might be informed in its service to Area 26.
In Service, George J.
John A., Chairperson
First, I want to thank all those who attended yesterday's meeting. We had a total of seven people in attendance. Will all those who attended please stand?
Thanks to District 3 for their hospitality in hosting us this weekend.
Last quarter, Gary P., DCM for District 25, reported a service club in Danville that was listed in the phone book as "Alcoholics Anonymous District 25." Two days after our Quarterly, Gary called to let me know that the new Danville phone book no longer had that listing.
I have updated the Public Information Committee's audiovisual equipment by purchasing a new flat screen LCD TV and a Blu-Ray/DVD player. The cost with tax is $291.25. The funds will come from the $500.00, which was allocated to the Public Information Committee for the last two years. No other withdrawals have been made from our allotment in the past two years.
I showed the new equipment to the Public Information Committee yesterday, and we watched three of the Young Peoples' videos. In addition to showing off the new equipment, I also talked about the Public Information Kit and Workbook.
Following a brief discussion, I brought up the topic of anonymity. It was during our conversation that Gary F. from District 35 told us that the Transitions treatment facility had obtained the mailing list for the Northern Kentucky Convention. Per Darryl M.'s suggestion, I will be sending letters to the treatment center, and the host committee of the convention. I will also contact G.S.O. about this.
Respectfully submitted, John A.
Chris T., Chairperson
I would like to thank District 3 for hosting this Area 26 meeting.
Since the last area meeting in April, I have made adjustments to the GSO database for 81 different groups and/or individuals. Most of these modifications also required a change to the living document I have on my computer known as the Area 26 Directory.
I have also put together individual packets for each District in the Area. These packets require updated information to be completed and returned by the current DCMs to the Registrar on or before November 11, 2011. This will give us ample time to report our changes to the GSO and also commence with the publication of the 2012 Area 26 Directory.
The GSO records for Area 26 reflect the following statistics: Status Number of Groups, Group Names and District Groups Belong to New
No groups listed Active
708 Groups listed Pending Active
1 Group # 701174 Spiritual Awakenings In LaGrange Inactive
537 Groups (way too many to list here) Pending Inactive
No groups listed Merged
No groups listed Unknown
One group was listed and corrected during this quarter.
No groups listed Current GSO Totals (Area 26 Only): 1245 Groups listed: 57% (708) listed as active or pending active, 42% (527) listed as inactive or pending inactive.
Respectfully submitted by: Chris T.
Debbie C., Chairperson
Debbie C., currently serving as your Area 26 Special Needs/Accessibilities Chair.
First, I would like to tell everyone how very glad we have been to welcome you to District 3.
What an honor it is to host this body. I'm so glad you are here.
Since our last meeting, I have had the opportunity to co-lead a workshop on Special Needs/Accessibilities at the Falls City Convention. While this workshop was not well attended, those of us who were there got to learn a lot about the barriers that keep people from this program of recovery, such as wheelchairs, visual impairment and hearing impairment among many others.
We also had the chance to hear first hand how the Meetings on Wheels program got started in Louisville, how they are operating at this time and their plans for the future. I would like to thank the Host Committee in Louisville for inviting me to participate in this workshop.
You will notice that I use the Committee title-Special Needs/Accessibilities-that is our new name, which came out of the 61st General Service Conference, and all of the literature will be changed to reflect that title in the future.
Five representatives, two of who were new District representatives, attended our committee meeting yesterday. I was able, with the budget allowed my committee, to hand out new Special Needs/Accessibilities kits to each of these attendees with the understanding that they would pass that kit along to the next Chair in their District. These kits are the first that have been made available to our committee and have many useful items and literature in them. We are very excited to get them. Would everyone who attended this meeting yesterday please stand and be recognized?
Respectfully submitted, Debbie C.
Brian S., Chairperson
I would like to thank District 3 for their hospitality this weekend. Also, thanks to Area 26 for the opportunity to serve and thanks to all who attended our meeting yesterday. I'd like to ask all who attended the treatment meeting yesterday to stand and be recognized.
Since our last meeting I haven't pursued any real Committee-related activity, aside from my regular commitment at JADAC in Louisville. I have fielded a phone call or two for guidance from the fellowship, and I did forward a Bridging the Gap request from Phoenix, Arizona to Gary F. in Northern Kentucky. The person inquiring is in treatment in Arizona and will be returning to Kentucky to live.
In our committee meeting yesterday, we had 14 people in attendance. Some were first time attendees, but many were returning participants. Paul F. from District 6 gave a brief overview of his activity in St. Elizabeth Hospital in Florence, KY. Paul did a good job expressing the personal benefits he receives by taking such actions. He also updated the committee on the improvements the hospital has made in their relationship with AA. Nine months ago, Dick W., District 32 DCM shared with the committee about the struggles he was encountering with St. Elizabeth Hospital.
The hospital has streamlined their volunteer application, which seems better than their old system. Still, there is a great need for more volunteers in the Florence area and especially female volunteers.
Next we launched into a topic, which led to a great sharing session. The topic really was singleness of purpose but the topic read as "Why is it that in Louisville there are 427 AA meetings a week yet only 58 of them are closed meetings? That's less than 14% of our meetings in Louisville that are for alcoholics only. Why? What message does that send? Is it an intentional attempt to reach more potential alcoholics or is merely a lack of understanding of our traditions or our vital need for unity? Is AA being spread too thin?" As you might imagine, many people had something to say about this. I sensed that we could have carried on well into lunch if we wanted to. In summation of the sharing session, it came down to three words: Education, education, education. How this topic fit in with our committee purpose is the fact that we're like first responders. We're on the firing line; we have an opportunity to share the truth about AA to people who haven't even made it here yet. But we need more AA's on the firing lines with us, in the trenches with us, sharing our life-saving message to those who have yet to receive freedom from alcohol.
In service, Brian S.
Jon S., Chairperson
First, I would like to thank those of district 3 for hosting this meeting. As usual you did a great job. Would all those who helped please stand and be recognized?
We received 142 emails this past quarter and answered 102 of them (40 did not require a response.) I also sent an email to every district asking if they would be updating their own meetings or if they would like us to continue to update them. I would like to thank the eight that responded. We had 95,963 successful requests for pages from 11/28/10 to 5/5/11. Of those requests, 2,471 were links from other websites. The rest were links from search engines or directly from users.
We purchased some software from a company that sells at great discounts to nonprofits to equip our website team. We got the software for $64. The same software would have cost $1,616 retail.
By the end of this quarter we should have two other people besides me editing our website. This should make it possible for the next Website committee chairperson to focus on the things other than the tech stuff.
We have completed our website guidelines and will be submitting them as an agenda item at our next area assembly.
We had seven people at our committee meeting. Would those still present please rise and be noticed. One was new to our group and will soon be a part of our new website team. We talked about the need to maintain anonymity online and we passed a motion to submit a floor action.
The newsletter questions should be on our website in the next day or two. We are working to make our website more interactive.
I will be talking with Joy about making a slide show presentation for our website to show in a general way what goes on at the General Service Conference. There is plenty of space available for committees to express their experience, strength and hope about service work on our website.
In Service, Jon S.
Welcome To Service
Darryl M., Alternate Chairperson
Darryl, Co-Chair for Area 26. There were 28 people in attendance at the Welcome to Service Workshop yesterday. There was a lot of discussion about home group participation in service.
We shared how to stimulate service at the home group level; also I was allowed to explain our General Service Conference and Structure.
Yours in Service, Darryl M.
Some warnings we WISH wed seen on the labels of alcoholic
WARNING: Consumption of alcohol may create the illusion that you
are tougher, smarter and more handsome than some really, really big
guy named Killer.
WARNING: Consumption of alcohol may actually CAUSE pregnancy.
WARNING: Consumption of alcohol may lead you to believe you are
invisible to Officers of the Law.
Does your Home Group, Committee or District have an upcoming AA event? Please let Kentuckiana News know about it so we can advertise it in our next issue. Contact us at Kentuckiananewsletter@yahoo.com Recovery Humor Some warnings we WISH we'd seen on the labels of alcoholic beverages: WARNING: Consumption of alcohol may create the illusion that you are tougher, smarter and more handsome than some really, really big guy named "Killer." WARNING: Consumption of alcohol may actually CAUSE pregnancy.