ACA World Service Organization Annual Business Conference Delegate Report
Submitted by Jeannie Toper May 2018
This is the 40th anniversary of ACA! There were conference people at the convention that have been in ACA for 35 years, and this is something we need to be thankful for because it led to our extraordinary literature!
Delegates present represented the countries of India, Greece, The United Kingdom, Denmark, Argentina, Canada and the United States.
The proceedings follow a format of Introductions of the Board, Committee Reports and Proposal Presentations and Discussions. The tenor of the meeting is goal oriented, yet measures are taken to facilitate the strength of sharing and hearing the minority opinion. Review of Parliamentary Procedure and the OPPM.
There were a total of 17 committee reports presented. All of those reports are not documented here. The final audio of the entire two days of meetings is available on the website or you may ask Jeannie Toper for additional information that she may have. The committee reports were outstanding. There was even a delegate from India who inquired about spreading ACA more to the Middle East.
ACA has accomplished a great deal over the last year but there is much more to be done. There are now approximately 2000 registered meetings, and 84 inter-groups. Regarding service ~ things were said such as: “We shamelessly plea for help,” and “Please encourage your groups to volunteer.”
The Treasurer’s Report, Bill D., Miami
Bill’s home group in Miami put together the very first World Conference in Delray, Fl. We are continuing to have yearly conferences.
We received $79,871 in combined contributions from our worldwide membership. There were $550,192 in sales related income after sales expenses were deducted. We have cash assets of $412,428. Combine this with inventory assets brings the figure to $667,505. One individual donated $7500., which was helpful.
Bill’s report reflects that it is disappointing that our book sales amounts to 86% of our income for the year and contributions comprise 14% of our total income. It is a point of interest that AA got 43% of its income from 7th Tradition Contributions in 2015. The Finance Report was report was six pages long, (single spaced) wherein he expressed the seriousness of the lack of contributions. It’s great that we are selling our literature, but he stated: “What do these book sales say for me who already has the book and the gift of recovery?” Bill’s report stated that he in no way wishes to blame or criticize anyone, but he feels it is necessary that we strengthen the awareness regarding the importance of our being a self supporting group. He stated: “If for some reason we were unable to rely on our books sales how long could we operate on the contributions as a fellowship that is saving more lives than we will ever know?” He said it would probably be about one or two months at our current expense levels before our prudent reserve was gone. Bill stated “My two dollar a week donation to my home group barely adds up to $100 for the entire year as long as I don’t miss more than two meetings a year. What can my group do with the donation of $100 a year for the 10 or 15 of us who regularly give two dollars along with the five or 10 do not give her only get one dollar?” He discussed an effort to send in five dollars or $10 during our birthday months. This could be called a birthday gratitude donation. He stated that when we get money to support a cause we are more invested in its success and we hopefully are with ACA to succeed to the many people who do not know about us so that they can get the same help that we got when we came here. As we grow our expenses increase. European commissions from sales are helping a great deal.
It was clear that the contributions we make individually need to go beyond what we are donating to the group because the group has expenses. His suggestion is that we each take a financial commitment to ACA more seriously on an individual level. (And I guess there is an app for this giving as well.)
We are seeing a greater trend in 2018 regarding contributions, and this is hopeful. Regarding passing the basket, it was mentioned that AA often states: “Think about how much you spent on your last drink.” One group mentioned before passing the basket asking the question: “How much is your emotional sobriety worth?” Another group said they say: “Consider putting in a couple dollars for your inner child.” I, Jeannie, suggested at the Saturday, May 26, 2018 meeting that perhaps we can pass a monthly “WSO Service Support Basket. The idea was well received. If approved, it would be wise to include this endeavor in the readings so members can prepare.
Approximate total donations from Florida for 2017 or $4266. All of Palm Beach County In total $1127 (Rough math.)
Bill also expressed the need for more help regarding volunteer service work and mentioned the need for continuing to reach people. The migration to a cloud-based platform for accounting was complete. His team oversaw the relocation of the entire WSO office to a larger space. We have gone from 900 feet to 2400 square feet.
One idea per the writer: State within the format for meetings and study groups: “The ACA World Service Office has a great need for financial support so that we are able to carry the message to the adult children who still suffer. On the _____ of the Month we pass a special basket so please consider trying to contribute a larger donation as possible at that time. We are a tax deductible nonprofit that wishes to help others the way we have been helped.”
The address for donations is : ACAWSO/ 1458 E. 33rd St., Signal Hill, CA 90755. You can also go to the shopping cart and make a donation here: https://shop.adultchildren.org/collections
Literature Committee report, Charlie and David
Literature committee calls are open to all ACA members. They are 11:30 AM Eastern standard time the first Saturday in January April July and October.
Volunteers are needed and wanted! We need translators, Writers, editors, proofreaders, illustrators, graphic designers, lay out specials, and photographers! Virtually every aspect of the weather chair committee depends on volunteers. Volunteers are critical. All international translation teams are entirely volunteer run. US residents with foreign language skills are urged to support translation teams! Please express your interest to litstaff @adult children.org
Highlights: A trifold which reaches out to adult children in AA and other fellowships was approved. This is especially exciting in that we have something that specifically reaches out to our fellow AA‘s Possibly 80% of AA’s speak of growing up within alcoholism but they are often not aware of us. We wrote a message for them in the form of a light blue trifold. We hope to expand it over other 12 step programs. It was actually Bill Wilson who coined the term “emotional sobriety,” and there is a quote from him on the front of the trifold. We can be a huge help to people in AA’s and we hope to lower the barriers to their understanding. Approval for two new pieces of literature were presented as proposals and both passed.
We are excited about Ready Set Go. It is comparable to a Back to Basics. South Africa used it. It can be used in various formats. It also has a non-dominant hand writing component. It has been proven helpful and has been presented unofficially in Denmark. An event idea is “Bring your AA friends to a Basic ACA Workshop.” A proposal was made to have this piece of literature approved and the proposal passed.
The Little Red Book ~ what you need to get through the first few months. The writing has begun for The Little Big Book (not sure it will be named that). The development of the Loving Parent Workbook is in process. We have published the international Spanish BRB, We are printing in Europe for the first time and doing our printing abroad has helped us financially. 1500 Russian BRB’s were sold, 2000 Swedish books, 500 Finnish Yellow Workbooks, 500 Castilian Spanish BRB’s, 500 Danish BRB’s, 550 Danish Yellow Books. Mary Jo stated that the BRB and The Yellow Book are e-books.
The changes within last year’s proposals that passed are being implemented. (Such as the info on drug use, and adding “dysfunctional,” and info on sponsorship and fellow travelers, etc.) ACA World Service welcomes literature submissions from the fellowship.
It is the third anniversary of the revived ComLine Newsletter. We are looking for a volunteer to do layout. We thank all adult children who take the time to write down and share their experience strength and hope with our readers. Please encourage all adult children to share their stories, drawings, photos, and poems. We especially welcome stories from adult children around the world. Send your creations to litstaff@adult children.org
Japanese BRB –Thanks to the service of Hiroko and the Japanese translation group, the Japanese BRB translation is nearly complete. The first Polish intergroup and translation team who contacted us in June have translated a big part of the BRB into Polish. The Greek intergroup translation team has translated three pieces of literature. The translation group in Quebec, Montreal is continuing the effort to translate the BRB into French. The Russian BRB translation is complete and published. German is also in process.
We currently offer literature in 19 languages. And although we have established a baseline process for getting literature processed, we are keenly aware of the rest of the world’s need for literature and desire for translated materials. Skype is the face of many meetings as well as the Internet.
Amazon is doing well. Selling up to 1200 pieces of literature a month. With Amazon we get 25% of the sale. Our publishing business helps support us. We purchased a motorized lift truck.
The European Committee Report, Majbrit, Denmark
The European committee report is always extraordinary. We have a beautiful woman from Denmark named Majbrit who said that it was always her dream to connect the European countries and ACA, and she is doing just that! She discusses things like how difficult it is to translate the spiritual essence of our literature, and she reminds us that “I am a Dane, and my inner child does not speak English.” She emphasizes that people need our literature in their own language, and that this is true for American immigrants as well.
We are continuing our outreach in Europe. Translations are a difficult process. She says that oftentimes what happens is that people get fired up and then the literature triggers them and they are unable to complete the process. Majbrit says that one of the biggest tools which often needs to be translated is The Traditions because “it is how we treat each other.” Germany is getting finished. There are five new translations coming in. If you are bi-lingual please help. The committee meets the first Saturday of the month 8 AM in North America. David Mc. also contributed greatly to the reports on this and The Literature Committee. Our growth in Europe continues to be exponential.
Proposals Proposal number five regarding adding intergroup and meeting group web links into the WSO directory passed. (Even though it is going to involve a great deal of management and our webmaster is a volunteer).
Proposal number seven which involves online conferencing and voting technologies for remote access to the ABC passed.
The Member and Public Service Committee Report. Bill D, Miami
The Member and Public Service Committee supports ACA members and also makes information about ACA available to the public and professionals through the placement of literature, public service announcements, and in-person presentations. MPS efforts do not promote ACA but rather help attract those who still suffer to the ACA program and to raise awareness about ACA to the public. If they cannot see or hear us, they cannot be attracted to us.
One goal from 2017 was to produce a monthly publication that can be emailed to all members on a monthly basis. The result is “The Traveler,” This fine name was selected. It is a news and announcement information publication and leaves longer recovery shares and other articles for publication in the quarterly ComLine. The first issue was sent out October, 2017. It went out to approximately 2400 members who signed up, and was warmly received. The second motion from 2017 was to install a newsletter button on the homepage. As of this writing there are 3900 subscribers.
The committee hosted an information and literature sales table at the 2017 Florida AAA state convention with attendance of about 2500 people and sold over $2000. worth of ACA books while distributing over 3000 free pamphlets.
The committee presented a one house one hour workshop on emotional sobriety at the 61st annual 2017 Florida AAA state convention in Jacksonville.
5423 units of literature were sent around the world through MPS public out-reach and H and I programs. We supported 4 professional therapy/ social worker related conferences, two in California, one in Illinois and one in Florida with ACA literature.
Arranged a 1/2 hour radio interview show with two ACA members that aired in Southern California prior to the 2017 ABC. Received 4223 emails from members and the public and responded, etc.
Held regularly scheduled monthly committee meetings on the third Wednesday of the month. Continued to receive and read direct contacts from the international community. Presently much of the communication and sharing of documents between committee members occurs on the Slack platform. The monthly meeting minutes are posted on the ACA website at this link. All are welcome to participate or observe. https://acawso.org/category/outreach-committee/
MPS his two primary goals for the future. To continue dedicated assistance to ACA members, groups and service bodies with issues they may have that prevent them from performing their recovery and service work effectively, and the committee is committed to putting the ACA message in front of as many people as possible to help those who suffer from the effects of growing up in an alcoholic or otherwise dysfunctional environment. This committee had many more accomplishments which are not stated herein.
Next year’s Annual Business Meeting will be held in Sweden next April 2019. At this point it appears the 4th World Service Conference will be held there as well. J
Random: Listen to Tony A discuss the steps he developed and why he wrote them:
Thank you for reading this and sharing this information at your meetings and study groups. J