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WHY YOU NEED A SERVICE SPONSOR

republished from flyer “Why You Need A Service Sponsor”. ServSpon2

 

PLEASE GET A SERVICE SPONSOR 

A service sponsor is a person who takes on the role of guide to the person new to service, sharing experience, strength and hope in service. It is a long-term relationship, usually initiated at the request of the member to be so sponsored. The relationship is one which can provide the experience of a shared journey in carrying the message to the still-suffering alcoholic.

A good overview on service sponsorship may be found in the pamphlet, Questions and Answers on Sponsorship, pages 25- 27.  There it is suggested that, “A service sponsor is usually someone who is knowledgeable inAA history and has a strong background in the service structure.”

In selecting a service sponsor . . . try to find someone whose service attitudes, experience and style he or she admires. It is always helpful to remember that we have three legacies, and that recovery through the Twelve Steps and unity through the Twelve Traditions are equal sides to theAA triangle.  Service in conformity with the Twelve Concepts should always be seen as closely related to recovery and unity. So, one question to ask in selecting a service sponsor ,is whether you admire the recovery and adherence to the Traditions shown by the prospective sponsor.

The same attitudes necessary for a GSR should be present in a prospective service sponsor: courage, self-humor, and emotional maturity. A service sponsor should be as kind, non-judgmental and willing to share as a recovery sponsor would be with a newcomer.”   – from: Service Handbook and Articles of Association and By-Laws SouthEastern New York Area Committee and Assembly of Alcoholics Anonymous (Area49) Eleventh Revision, January 2013, Updated to 2019.

The Nassau County General Service Committee has a Service Sponsorship Committee to help GSRs, District Chairs (DCMs), and Alternates find a local Service Sponsor and learn about General Service structure operations, and responsibilities.

For more information, contact: or .

The Service Sponsorship Committee is also responsible for educating GSRs, DCMs, and Alternates about their commitment, role, and resources to help them represent their group and learn our Twelve Traditions and Twelve Concepts of Service.

General Service Reps Meeting Minutes – April 19, 2021

General Service Reps Meeting
April 19, 2021
Virtual Meeting
Opened with Declaration of Unity
Minutes were screen shared from the last meeting. Motion to accept was passed
Reports:
Melanie – Website Chair
• did an overview of the website
• changed 3rd party host provider over to her
• added new informational pages (i.e., Covid Info)
• calendar maintenance
• committee and officer anonymous email addresses
• measures and monitors website hits
• website is designed to be a resource of events (flyers) and access to archival documents which includes contact information
• we do not maintain calendar for Nassau County General Service or for individual groups
• website is updated weekly
Recent Anniversaries :
Marty – April 25th – 34 years
Steve S – April 12th – 24 years
Deb S – April 18th – 8 years
Issues in Home Groups:
Q- are we allowed to serve coffee
Hybrid meetings – 6 agenda items for online meetings on the Delegates Questionnaire, the question is: is there guidance for this member to pass on to his group.
They were both directed to the website to review “Pandemic Guidance “
Jim M – Nassau Intergroup Chair
• Virtual meetings on the zoom platform were okayed by NUMC, an account was set up
• looking for an outdoor event for the summer perhaps a picnic or share-a-day for August 22 in Eisenhower Park
• Should Intergroup provide medallions ? Inventory of non AA items is an issue
• looking at proposed changes to bylaws
• use meeting change form to keep us updated of changes to your group
Karen K – Treasurer’s Report
Screen shared the report
• Revenue for February $734.10
March revenue $950.60
• % for budget is 23% which doesn’t include $1,193.00
• expenses for zoom, orientation packages are well below 25%
• we are not spending very much money
• $21 will be reimbursed for NERAASA for those that want it
Motion to accept passed
Marty – DCMC Report
• since February we attended NERAASA, our Regional Trustee Francis gave a report regarding GSO
• thé International Convention was cancelled and $1.5 million was returned
• the 7th tradition contribution is up $2 million since 2019
• you can individually donate from $5 to $5,000 to GSO. There is no limited amount from the groups
• we attended the SENY Convention – thank you to those that participated in our time slot
• 71st General Service Conference  is 4/18 – 4/24. A US trustee at large will be elected. Coleen’s name was submitted for a term of 4 years
• please ensure you check your SPAM folder for emails or check with Chris L the Technology Officer if you are not receiving these emails
• upcoming event is NERF from 6/4 through June 6. A mass email will be sent about this event
• Concept 9 states: leadership in AA is always a vital need
Ann – 1st Alt DCMC
• welcomed new GSR’s
• we need DCM’s – see our map for the districts which are divided into clusters
• the requirements for this positions GSR experience. The DCM runs a district meeting virtually either 1x a month or every other month. GSR’s are invited to attend meetings in their cluster
•Raquel just took districts 208, 209 and 211
• how we run our business is outlined in the 3 legacies:
– Tradition 5 is why we are here
– Tradition 1 and 12 are about humility
– Tradition 2 is about faith
• We use “Robert’s Rules of Order” for who votes. The GSR’s can vote. The Alt GSR can only vote in the GSR’s absence. Elected Officers and Committee Chairs get 1 vote
Steve S – 2nd Alt DCMC
• duties include liaison with LICYPAA and Al-Anon
• May 15 is a kickball tournament presented by LICYPAA. Steve distributed flyers
• April 24th was a Poetry Slam
• Al-Anon and Nassau General Service will get together to plan a joint program in High Schools to reach the affected and the afflicted population. This will include CPC/PI members
Chris L – Technical Communications Officer
• nothing to report at this time
Raquel – DCM – Districts 208, 209 and 211
• Justin has been assisting her and she will seek help from Melanie our webmaster
• she has been attending groups in her districts to get more participation. They have very little understanding as to why we need GSR’s
• gave background on the questionnaire – beautiful response from the groups
Joe – Treatment Chair  – Absent
Barbara – Intergroup liaison for SENY
• attended assembly on 4/10
• Tom our delegate attended the conference and shared a video on the Big Book vocabulary and it’s’ legacy. If you would like a copy of his presentation go to SENY.org
• the Delegates questionnaire was discussed. Tom was able to answer questions from the GSR’s
• we are still working on the website in regards to sharing documents and contact lists in SENY including
e-commerce
• discussion was held on virtual meetings and meeting directories. We will not be printing any at this time.
Barbara A – Unity Breakfast
Absent
Chris H – Service Sponsorship (stand alone position)
• the Service Manual describes the chairs and committees
• there are pamphlets for every job in AA. The most important pamphlet is the GSR pamphlet
• we can go where Intergroup can’t
i.e., county jails. There are 57 NY prisons and we have the Bridging the Gap program
Jim C – Archives Chair
• participated in the annual (4/3) SENY Archived workshop which celebrated the Big  Book
• latest edition to archives is the Nassau County General Service group inventory
Linda D – Grapevine Chair
• since we last met we had $56 leftover from 2020. We used this to but 2 “Carry the Message” subscriptions
• attended SENY Grapevine meeting on 4/7
• contributions are down for purchasing Grapevine
• there are 2 new books:
Free on the Inside and the Spanish version of Women in AA
• July we will have a grapevine writing workshop as well as the NYSIW will be held in July
Nadine – Corrections Chair had to leave early
Mario – Hispanic District – absent
Kristen CPC – absent. 5/3 is their committee meeting
Ken – PI – absent
Mike – Accessibilities absent, recovering from surgery
• we reached out to Nassau County Commission for the Blind
• We have the possibility of panel presentations to the commision
• chairs from other counties attended as did social workers
• etiquette on Braille and how to speak to the blind was discussed
Regine – L.I.S.T.S.
• ad-hoc committee will probably be virtual. No date yet
New Business
•$1,193 from our budget and other districts (202 and 216) we have to disperse these funds. The bank closed. Marty put this in the General Service Bank account. No group conscience achieved. This is tabled
•Ann G – we are in discussions for attaining Insurance – can we use this for Insurance?
• Paul suggests we hold on to the money in escrow and perhaps return it to the clusters in the future – discussion tabled to June
Karen K and Chris H – explore meeting places. Form an adhoc committee to explore this. Motion seconded and passed
Important dates:
• concepts 5 & 6 on May 17th at this virtual address
• GSR meeting – June 21
• Unity Breakfast – June 27
Closed with the Responsibility Statement
This report of the minutes is being distributed by Deb S

North East Regional Forum Registration is Open

Registration is now open for the 2021 Northeast Virtual Regional Forum taking place from June 4-6, 2021.
As with traditional Regional Forums, the weekend will include workshops, presentations, Q&As, General Sharing, information about our Class A trustees and much, much more!
*Spanish, French, and ASL interpretation available.
All members are invited, so get on the virtual bus! Bring a newcomer!

2021 Delegate’s Questionnaire

Please use the links below to view the Delegate’s Questionnaire for our General Service Conference.

Hardcopy group responses must be postmarked by April 7th, 2021.

 

Please use the links below to complete your group’s response to the Delegate’s Questionnaire.

Electronic group responses must be submitted by April 13th, 2021.

 

NGSG Inventory Summary for 2020

Dear Trusted Servants:

Thank you to all who participated in our NGSG Inventory on 12/21/20, including members of NGSG, and those who conducted the Inventory. Summary prepared by Zach is as follows:

Nassau County Inventory 12/21/2020

Attendees: John W. (moderator), Nisaa(timekeeper), Zach (minutes), Annabel (DCMC) and members of Nassau General Service Group

Annabel (DCMC) – opening remarks.

John W. opening remarks: In general inventories are uncommon. Not to take your inventory but to help you with the process. This is done in the same spirit as doing your own step-work. The miracle their happens in the 6/7 steps when we look at what we’ve uncovered and take some additional action. The real opportunity to help strengthen Nassau County comes after this inventory. No decisions will be made tonight. Encouraged to not have debate. Please focus remarks to John. Encouraged the current officers to listen as much as you can and try not to respond or give feedback.

Nassau County General Service Inventory
From the pamphlet The AA Group: “Many groups periodically hold a ‘group inventory meeting’ to evaluate how well they are fulfilling their primary purpose: to help alcoholics recover through A.A.’s suggested Twelve Steps of recovery.” We will apply this same principle to our county structure.

1 – What is the basic purpose of Nassau County General Service?
• Support the home groups and to receive information and pass it on.
• Communicate with other groups inside Nassau.
• Facilitate spreading the message of recovery to groups below the group level in the service
triangle.
• Provide services beyond the capabilities of the group.

2 – Are we fulfilling this purpose?
YES: One of the reasons our districts are not strong is our county meetings
provide all we need. Good leadership, communication, love and tolerance.
NO: Lack of reaching out to the area. Only as good as the person doing the service. We could be more willing.

3 – Is NCGS attracting a good cross section of AA members into Service?
In order to succeed we need enthusiastic leaders. We have ICYPAA connection which represents a good cross section.
Yes, a terrific cross section. We include the spanish district.
The people that have joined are both young and mature. So, Yes.
One of the problems is that a number of groups don’t have GSR’s and are not represented. Perhaps there needs to be more outreach.
The pulse of the group can be determined by the representation. Not diverse at all, not a lot of people that look like him.
How do we get groups that are not represented? Hopes that no one feels unwanted.
In terms of increasing representation . . are Spanish interpreters available?
How do we attract members into GS? As a DCM went to dark meeting (no gsr) and tried to encourage participation. Perhaps we should just have a county meeting and helping GSR’s get involved in committees where they have interest.
350 groups in Nassau. Due to Covid many of those closed. We do need more. In Queens they would send GSR’s to nearby meetings to encourage participation. In the past we sent letters to dark groups. We are not attracting GSR’s. We are only receiving contributions from 45 groups. Very low participation.

4 – Are we forming into cliques and being different to some GSRs?
I hope we don’t shrink into viewer districts because the DCM provides a voice. We have to make it fun! Unity breakfast, share a day, etc.
It’s the same GSR’s year after year.

5 – Is the turnover in Service positions excessive?
Consensus was no.

6 – Has enough effort been made to explain the need and value of unity (12 Traditions) and service (12 Concepts)?
• For those of us who participate the answer is yes.
• We do run tradition workshop meetings. Was sober many years before she heard
of the concepts.
• We hold regular workshops. ex. Bridging the gap, grapevine.
• We need to explain the value of these concepts and traditions. In GS you need a
thick skin. In Nassau we value and explain.

7 – Is adequate opportunity given to all members to speak and participate in NCGS activities to arrive at the actual voice and effective conscience for our whole County?
Visual affirmation.
• A good example is tonight. Annabel informed us but to get people to look at the minutes beforehand is a challenge.

8 – Are County officers picked with care and consideration on the basis that serving in this capacity is a great responsibility and opportunity for Twelfth Step work?
• In the three past rotations .. . .there have been situations where it was hard to find people to serve.

9 – Have we defined well the scope of authority and service responsibility of our County officers, by specific job descriptions or guidelines?
SKIPPED

10 – Are the issues brought to NCGS made clear so all know what they are voting for or against?
11 – Are all important decisions reached by a discussion, vote, and whenever possible substantial unanimity?
COMBINE 10 and 11 – “Do you know what you are voting on and is it clear how it happens?”
• It is because the voting process is the Roberts Rules. No one is hand picked and we go through the voting process.
• The issues are made very clear.

12 – How do we treat the “Right of Appeal” thus assuring that minority opinion will be heard and that petitions for redress of personal grievances will be carefully considered?
Visual affirmations.
• We have a good representation as far as elections and as far as committees go.
When we leave the room everyone is happy.

13 – Does NCGS carry its fair share of the job helping SENY and GSO carry the message?
• There are a small group here that carry this message.

14 – Does NCGS communicate clearly its distinction from Nassau Intergroup? Do we cooperate or affiliate?
• We definitely cooperate. There are a few committees where we work together.

15 – Are we “self-supporting through County contributions” in covering expenses for Service in
the County? Do we have sufficient operating funds and operate on a prudent financial principle? • Visual affirmation that Geralda is giving the right information.

16 – Do we have an effective system for accounting and reporting funds? Combined with 15.
Consensus was yes.

17 – Is there more NCGS can do to carry the message?
• We can be doing more. The clusters were effective. No representation among
the black groups.
• There has to be some kind of outreach.
• We need to find a way to incorporate some younger folks with us.

Concluding remarks – John: The important thing now is to look at notes and figure out what needs addressing. If groups need GSR’s this is a great time to do that. Go to business meetings and bring the new GSR pamphlet. There are never enough people to do all of the work. Focus on the solution rather than the problem. Instead of 12 committees with no chairs just have a few strong committees.

Yours in service,
Annabel B

ZOOM MEETINGS FOR HOSTS:  PROTECTING ANONYMITY & DEFAULT SETTINGS

Note:  This was shared by NYC Central Office for AA and re-posting here for all of you hosting meetings since many of us are now using Zoom to host our meetings.
For Zoom users: With the rush to shift to online meetings, many of us did not take time to investigate what this meant to the spiritual foundation of our recovery – namely, anonymity. Now that online meetings are accessible, we want to pass on best practices for protecting anonymity.
These have been curated from the membership and online resources.
The default Zoom settings run counter to AA’s spiritual foundation of anonymity.  The meetings are publicly accessible and full names and faces are often displayed.  Additionally, by default all Zoom meetings are recorded to the cloud. Turning that feature off is simple, fortunately.
There are other settings in the Meeting subtab that can also be adjusted, such as disallowing remote control of devices, file transfer, data sharing with Zoom, and screen sharing.
Here are some suggested settings for your meeting to use. Please note that most, if not all, of the settings below are not the Zoom default:
Go to: Settings > Recording and click off the Local and Cloud recording features.
In the Zoom Settings section, under the Meeting subtab:
• Require Encryption for Third Party Endpoints
• Disable Auto saving chats
• Disable File transfer
• Disable Feedback to Zoom
• Disable Screen sharing
• Disable desktop/screen share for users
• Disable Remote control
• Allow Virtual background (this is the Zoom default and allows the user to use a virtual background instead of the inside of their apartment, for example)
In the Zoom Settings section, under the Recording subtab:
• Disable Local recording
• Disable Cloud recording
• Disable Automatic recording

A Full Table: The Day of Sharing at G.S.O.

Learn more about the Day of Sharing that took place on December 3, 2019 – below is an excerpt – read the full story from Box 459 here en_box459_spring20

On December 3, 2019, the General Service Office of Alcoholics Anonymous hosted a historic Day of Sharing with members of seven other Twelve Step fellowships. The gathering at A.A.’s upper Manhattan service office was not the first of its kind — the initial Day of Sharing took place in G.S.O.’s former location at 468 Park Avenue in 1991.

There have been several subsequent ones attended by representatives of Al-Anon and the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence (NCADD), as well as a “Fellowship Day of Sharing” in 2008 that included attendees from Debtors Anonymous (D.A.), Overeaters Anonymous (O.A.) and Narcotics Anonymous (N.A.). But December’s meeting brought together at one conference table the most diverse gathering of Twelve Step fellowships G.S.O. has ever hosted, not only Al-Anon, but also Cocaine Anonymous (C.A.), Narcotics Anonymous (H.A.), Heroin Anonymous (H.A.), Sexaholics Anonymous (S.A.), Debtors Anonymous (D.A.) and Overeaters Anonymous (O.A.). Jeff W., G.S.O.’s staff member on the Group Services desk, helped organize the gathering, and says, “What an effort they all made to come to this — some people traveled across the country to sit at that table together. I think we all felt this incredible gratitude. The potential was clear in terms of how much we can learn from each other.”