All posts by AA SF/Marin Intergroup

The Buzz: September 11, 2020

September Intergroup Meeting Debrief

SF/Marin Intergroup met on September 2nd, 2020. The minutes and presentation slides from that meeting are now available on our website.

Service Opportunities for the Upcoming Week…

  • Interested in local A.A.’s stories that share experience, strength, and hope? Of course you are! Join The Point Committee for their business meeting next week. P.S. they just posted their September Issue, see their flyer below for a teaser!
  • Are you a young person in A.A.? Or “young at heart”?! GGYPAA wants you to attend their monthly business meeting and kick it with the cool kids.
  • Join SF Public Relations (formerly PI/CPC) at their next meeting to learn more about how A.A. interacts with members of the professional community who work with alcoholics and members of the public who are interested in A.A.
    • Call to Action! SFPR is seeking experiences to include in their new printed pamphlet directed toward the homeless/un-housed alcoholic. If you or someone you know has a relevant story you feel is appropriate, please email sfpr@aasfmarin.org to share.

HelpChat Needs You!

Our HelpChat Committee is now holding regular orientations and business meetings monthly. Come check out their next business meeting on September 15th, 6-7pm. Orientation for new volunteers (which they need!) is at 5pm.

How HelpChat works:
Visitors to the aasfmarin.org website can click on a blue chat bubble to send a message. A HelpChat volunteer fields that message and responds. These volunteers provide a live chat service for new and existing A.A. members. More volunteers are needed!

Come join HelpChat at the orientation, or pass on the message that they are looking for volunteers. Requires 1-year continuous sobriety, a cell phone and/or computer.

Ring, Ring! The Point is Calling – for Articles!

The Point publishes original articles, interviews, reviews, poems, photos and illustrations from A.A.’s with a local SF Bay Area focus. You can see their current issue posted online or by clicking the flyer above. 

Share your story.Write for The Point! You can submit a word doc or even email an audio file to: thepoint@aasfmarin.org. The next submission deadline (for the October issue) is September 22nd, 2020.

“A.A. Technology Comes of Age” on Sept. 12th, 2020

AA seems to be moving into the technological age at warp speed! What form should we take as we do that? National AA Technology Workshop (NAATW) is meeting to discuss that and more.This virtual gathering will provide a platform for A.A.s to share information and experience on how technology has supported personal recovery, group unity and A.A. service. Stop by to hear about others’ experience with technology over the course of this very unusual year. There will be a number of segments with different topics sure to excite. Click here for more info!

Save these Dates, y’all!

Stay tuned for details…

Mirror. Absorb. Reflect.

For the love of shadows, please share this information with your social media communities and encourage your A.A. fellows to subscribe to The Buzz. All of our prior updates can be found here.

Your IFAA Intergroup | Central Office

Intergroup News | September 2020

This is an unofficial summary of the September 2020 Intergroup meeting provided for convenience; it is not intended to be the completed approved minutes. For a complete copy of the minutes and full committee reports see “Intergroup” on our website aasfmarin.org.

Our Intergroup exists to support the groups in their common purpose of carrying the A.A. message to the still suffering alcoholic by providing and coordinating services that are difficult for the individual groups to execute.

The Intercounty Fellowship has been organized by, and is responsible to, the member groups in San Francisco and Marin for the purpose of coordinating the services that individual groups cannot provide.

The meeting was held on Wednesday, September 2, 2020, online via Zoom. The meeting was started with a call to order and the Serenity Prayer. The August 2020 minutes and the September 2020 agenda were approved.

Standing Reports

Board Chair, Alan G. Our newest Board member is Nikki T. The Communication Committee is active including the weekly Buzz emails that started last Friday, August 28. The Central Office lease expires October 2021, so we will start sending out surveys about the role of a physical Central Office. Surveys will be in The Buzz. Our annual Board Retreat will happen on Saturday, September 12. The purpose is to review duties and the purpose of the Board and Board committees.

Treasurer, Renee T. As of July, our rating remains at “Excellent.” Group Contributions were under budget, Individual Contributions were over budget and Operating Expenses were under budget. Note: Individual Contributions are way up!
Question: Does individual Contributions include Faithful Fivers? Answer: Yes, but there are a few bigger one-time donations. Faithful Fivers is a program for recurring donations. It would be great to have more Faithful Fiver contributors. We are very grateful for their support.
Question: How does a person become a Faithful Fiver? Answer: Visit the website and sign up at aasfmarin.org/contributions.
Question: Where does the over budget money go? Answer: We try to zero out the year annually (earn and spend the same as the previous year) but that rarely happens. Sometimes it is utilized to take on projects, such as moving the Central Office. (We will be discussing at the Board Retreat). Last time Central Office moved, we had to have a Capital Campaign but we may not have to do that this time.

Question: There were some large donations last year. is there any reporting on that? Answer: We created a Special Project Fund that gets reported on quarterly. Contact: treasurer@aasfmarin.org.

Intergroup Committee Reports

Archives, Michael O. The Archives Committee is still not meeting in person. We had a few out-of-state visitors who heard about Archives from The Buzz. The Archives survey for groups is still available on the website at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/VCZWDCY.

The Point, John B. The September issue has audio stories and COVID-19 stories. Contributions are welcome, both audio and print. For the October issue, we are looking for stories on the 10th Step, 10th Tradition and the 10th Concept. The Point committee meets once a month on the second Saturday at 12:30 pm. Contact: thepoint@aasfmarin.org.

HelpChat, John H. Currently we are seeking volunteers. Volunteers can now request blocks of time.

What is HelpChat? It’s Teleservice via Text (with a Slack interface). We will have a Committee Chair position opening up next month. If interested, our orientations and regular business meetings are on the third Tuesday of each month at 5:00 pm. Contact: helpchat@aasfmarin.org.

SF Public Relations, Peter M. covering for Guru P. We gave a presentation at ACT (via Zoom). The committee is in the process of creating a pamphlet for the unhoused alcoholic. Let us know if you are interested in helping. We are also working on a workshop for Unity Day in October called “Anonymity During the Pandemic.” We are considering a PR-focused newsletter because of a need to keep contact with volunteers better. Our committee meetings are on the second Monday of month at 7:00 pm. Contact: sfpr@aasfmarin.org.

SF Teleservice, Luke H. We will be creating a twice-monthly digest of day-to-day happenings at Teleservice. Types of calls are changing, so check out the orientation. Teleservice orientations are held on the third Monday of every month at 6:00 pm. Contact: sfteleservice@aasfmarin.org.

Technology, Richard A. The database migration is ongoing (old website to hosted solution). When complete, it will update the online schedule, accommodating the new remote / in-person / hybrid A.A. meetings. It will also include new forms to allow for easy updating by individual meetings.

Question: Will there be interactions with Central Office while registering new meetings via an online form? Answer: There will be a review by Central Office via email after the form has been submitted.

Question: Will there be help for people who don’t understand how to use the new list? Answer: Help for people using the meeting list will occur through Teleservice and/or Central Office staff.

Question: Will this database and software be made available for other fellowships? Answer: To the best of our ability. It was made in conjunction with a member from another area and will be documented to ease rollout.

Question: Is there a plan to add information about compliance with local Health Guidelines? Answer: We are not planning to police meetings about their guidelines; that is up to the individual meetings. However, there will be suggestions on the website about local guidelines.
Contact: tech@aasfmarin.org.

Service Community Liaison Reports

General Service District 6 (San Francisco), Alison There was a virtual Summer Assembly. The Area voted to create a technology committee. There is a conference report that can be found at https://drive.google.com/file/d/1JQ2zsTNippkpAyCLTqhjhxdpQjdzB2aq/view. Elections will be coming up for the District Officers. We will be going over org charts soon to see overlap between the Intercounty Fellowship of Alcoholics Anonymous (IFAA) and General Service.

Marin Teleservice, Amanda We are looking to see how to participate in Marin Unity Day. We meet on the fourth Tuesday of each month at 7:30 pm.

Marin PI/CPC, Evan C. We are cooperating with Marin HHS on guidelines for outdoor meetings. Email for applications for a site to meet at Stafford Lake and McInnes Park. We are creating Intro to A.A. at SLEs and ECFs. We meet on the fourth Thursday of each month at 7:30 pm. Contact: aamarinpicpc@gmail.com

Marin H&I, Karen A few facilities have closed including Mill Street. The Jail is back up and running and have set up an outside space for meetings. We are asking for a second meeting. Donations to H&I can be made at handinorcal.org and would be helpful since literature is still being sent out.

General Service District 10 (Marin), Alex Marin Unity Day will be on Saturday, October 12. General Service District 6 is looking into a technology committee as well. Contact: recordingsecretarydist10@gmail.com.

New Business

Wellness Check

Maury P. How are IGRs doing?

  • Zoom is weird. Constantly connected but feeling a little disconnected. Difficult to do Zoom meetings after working on Zoom all day. Have been using the phone more. Thank you for asking. It helps to be reminded that this is everyone’s first global pandemic.
  • I am retired and live alone and wish people were more cognizant of people’s health needs. Not willing to go back to in-person meetings, but really miss the hugs. I have been doing more online conferences. Personally I wish the town halls were on a different night but really appreciate all the work the IG is doing.
  • Really appreciate the quick transition to Zoom meetings. Zoom has given more opportunities for service which has been good. Looking for advice on reaching out to people who have dropped out of zoom meetings.
  • Reminded of the part of the big book that talks about alcoholics going to war. Zoom is not the same but it is better than nothing. Looking forward to stories in the big book about this time.
  • Thank you for asking. There is a lot going on and have been impressed by all the people who have stepped up to make these remote meetings possible. I know there are lots of meetings trying to reach out to people without the internet. Recently had a new grandchild and living life on life’s terms. It is nice to see people who have moved away and remote meetings have been great for that.
  • It is correct that Intergroup cannot police meetings around health guidelines. It is all over the place for in-person meetings. Heard that Sonoma County was using the SF/Marin website technology.
  • Making phone calls for people who cannot connect through Zoom and brings them to the meetings that way.

Old Business

Town Hall Debrief and Follow Up Actions

There were great presentations and all the information is here on aasfmarin.org.

Targeted Message

  1. Please sign up for The Buzz as we are currently trying to coordinate all fellowship wide communication through that channel.
  2. Check out https://aasfmarin.org/resuming for important information when considering the move back to in-person meetings and for all resources from the Town Halls.
  3. Communicate what Intergroup is and does – each of us is part of the Outreach Committee!
    “Intergroup/Central Office is the local AA service provider that brings you aasfmarin.org, our meeting schedule, 12th step support – including 24/7 phone coverage, Sunshine Club meetings and HelpChat, AA literature, group insurance and more.”

Adjourn with the Responsibility Statement

Next Intergroup Meeting is Wednesday, October 7, 2020, location to be determined. Please email development@aasfmarin.org with any questions.

Treasurer’s Report

Month Ended June 2020

For June 2020, Gross Profit (revenue minus COGS) was $17,262, this was under budget by $1,350 due to low bookstore sales. Gross Profit is $14,336 over budget year to date.

Total Operating Expense for June was $26,911, which is higher than our monthly average of $24K. This is due to timing of rent.

The result is a Net Operating Deficit of $9,951 for the month. This leaves the fellowship with a $7,667 surplus year to date.

Group Contributions for June were $9,105, under budget by $2,644. Group contributions are $11,151 under budget year to date. Individual Contributions for June were $7,666, over budget by $4,353. Individual contributions are $33,533 over budget year to date.

Total Unrestricted Cash for June 2020 was $98,445, a decrease of $7,498 from May 2020.  Unrestricted Cash is more than 4x monthly operating expenses.

OVERALL RATING FOR June 2020:       EXCELLENT

INTERGROUP FINANCE RATING SYSTEM

Every month we rate our monthly finances as “Excellent”, “Good”, “Fair” or “Poor”.  Generally speaking, here are the definitions of those terms:

EXCELLENT:  We exceeded our budget.  Our income was greater than our expenses for the month and we have more than two months’ worth of operating expenses in unrestricted cash balances.  Operating expenses are roughly $24K/month, so we’d have over $48K in unrestricted cash balances for the month.  The Intergroup rating has been “excellent” since December 2019.

GOOD: We are meeting our budget.  Our income for the month, or for the YTD, was slightly greater than our expenses and we’d have approximately 1.5 – 2 months of operating expenses in unrestricted cash balances. The last time we were “good” was in November 2019.

FAIR: We are not meeting our budget.  Our expenses were greater than our income for the month and for the YTD – and our unrestricted cash balance would be somewhere between 1 and 1.5x our operating expenses.

POOR: We are not meeting our budget and our unrestricted cash balances fell below one month of operating expenses. The last time we were “poor” was in December 2016.

The Buzz: September 4, 2020

** Reminder: This is your new weekly Buzz Update.**

Save the Date for Zoom Updates…

Zoom has announced that, starting September 27th, 2020, all meetings on their platform will require a Waiting Room or Password;if these changes are not made by meeting hosts/admin by that date, Zoom will automatically add a Waiting Room to your meeting.
  Looking for best practices and tips for your Zoom meeting? IFAA’s nifty website has some local A.A. community-sourced Zoom best practices and tips for your meetings.

Unity & Service Conference this Weekend!

A reminder that the 5th Annual Virtual Unity & Service Conference will be held this weekend, all day Sat 9/5 and Sun 9/6. Click on the flyer below for registration info. Join A.A. members from all over the country to celebrate unity and service!

Service Opportunities for the Upcoming Week:

Our Service Committees are lively as ever and they continue to knock out their monthly meetings.

Old-Timers, We Need Your Wisdom!

General Service in NY has reopened their call for stories to update the “A.A. For the Older Alcoholic” pamphlet, and is looking for submissions focused on specific experiences. See a snippet of their memorandum below for background, topics and information on where to send your stories! Deadline is December 15th.
 

Check out the weekly “Tuesday Chip” remote meeting in Marin! They made the neat flyer below showcasing September’s speakers and would absolutely love to see your sparkling faces on, you guessed it, Tuesday nights! Pop in @ 8:15pm for fellowship before the 8:30pm start.

We Need You, Bright Lights of A.A.!

For the love of lightbulbs, please share this information with your social media communities and encourage your A.A. fellows to subscribe to The Buzz. All of our prior updates can be found here.

Your IFAA Intergroup | Central Office

The Buzz: August 28, 2020

** Reminder: This is the first of our new weekly Buzz Updates.**
 

Hey Hey, Labor Day!

Our September IFAA Intergroup Orientation and Meeting will be held Wednesday, September 2nd. Orientation for new members is from 6:00-6:30pm with the general meeting to follow 7:00-8:30pm.

Ever wondered what the Twelve Concepts of A.A. are all about? Look no further than our very own Marin General Service, who holds a regular meeting on the subject every first Tuesday of the month. More info here.
 

Central Office Closed September 7th

While our IFAA Bookstore is still in operation, we will be closed on Labor Day, Monday, Sept 7th, 2020. You may order literature, books and chips at our website. We will ship (at a reduced rate for SF and Marin members) via UPS or make your order available for curbside pick up, Monday through Friday, from 10 AM to 4 PM.
 

“The Secret is Service…”

The 5th Annual Virtual Unity & Service Conference will be held September 5th & 6th, 8:45am-6pm! This is going to be two full days of epic speakers and panel discussion. “Finance & Romance in A.A.’s Digital Age” and “Anonymity and Outside Issues: Rights vs. Responsibilities” are just two of many talks sure to excite. Click on the flyer below for more info; pre-registration is encouraged!

Marin Fellowship Intergroup is hosting a virtual dance party! Saturday Night Dance Party will be held on August 29th, 7:30-9pm. What will begin as a speaker meeting will end as a dance extravaganza! Click here to learn more.

Town Hall # 3 Debrief

IFAA’s third Town Hall was held August 20th. All information, presentation slides, and meeting minutes can be found on our website here.
 

Help Us Keep the Hive Thriving!

For the love of honeycomb, please share this information with your social media communities and encourage your A.A. fellows to subscribe to The Buzz. All of our prior updates can be found here.

Your IFAA Intergroup | Central Office

Update #19: Town Hall #3 is Rapidly Approaching

** Please note: The Buzz will increase in frequency at the end of the month. We received feedback after the first few months of shelter-in-place that frequent communications and updates were appreciated and desired. Our hope is to, eventually, use this platform to provide more specific information about our Intergroup Service Committees and larger A.A. Service Entities for a more comprehensive local A.A. digital experience.**

Town Hall #3 is Rapidly Approaching!

Our third Town Hall meeting will be held Thursday, August 20th, 6:30 to 8:30 PM. Our first workshop-style format, this meeting will focus on keeping virtual meetings safe, using “breakout rooms” to create space for newcomers and fellowship in the digital world, and managing digital contributions. Discussion will include how all of these topics, together, can provide group members with novel (and exciting!) service commitments. Join us and share how your group has tackled some of these issues during our open sharing session. Please see this link for meeting info.

August Intergroup Meeting

The summary from our August Intergroup meeting is posted. Included are the IFAA financial reports through June 2020, as well as the meeting minutes.

The Point is...that we are willing to grow along spiritual lines

The August issue of The Point is up! The Point Committee is always looking for content; we’d love to read your stories of experience, strength and hope. More information can be found here

The 45th Annual Western Roundup Living Sober Conference 2020 will be held Aug 21 – Aug 23. This conference is the oldest and longest-running LGBTQ AA/Al-Anon Conference in the country! Click flyer or here to learn more.

Call to Action: Step into Service

Looking for ways to stay involved and be of service to your A.A. community? Feeling deprived of your usual group service commitments? (We’re looking at you, sorely missed coffee and sweeties). Getting involved with our various Service Committees is a great way to stay connected and contribute outside of your usual meetings

Love historical stuff? Try our IFAA Archives Committee. Dying to pick up the phone and talk to another alcoholic? Check out SF Teleservice and Marin Teleservice (Orientation & Business Meeting). Some other groups who are holding meetings in the second half of this month are Marin General Service, Marin PI/CPC, and CNCAAdditional information for each of these… and MUCH more… can be found on our Events Calendar.

IFAA Bookstore is still in operation, and will be closed on Labor Day, Monday, Sept 7th, 2020. You may order literature, books and chips ONLINE at our website. We will ship (at a reduced rate) via UPS or make your order available for curbside pick up, Monday through Friday, from 10 AM to 4 PM

For the love of coffee and sweeties, please share this information with your social media communities and encourage your A.A. fellows to subscribe to The Buzz. All of our prior updates can be found here.

Your IFAA Intergroup | Central Office

Intergroup News | August 2020

This is an unofficial summary of the August 2020 Intergroup meeting provided for convenience; it is not intended to be the completed approved minutes. For a complete copy of the minutes and full committee reports see “Intergroup” on our website aasfmarin.org.

Our Intergroup exists to support the groups in their common purpose of carrying the A.A. message to the still suffering alcoholic by providing and coordinating services that are difficult for the individual groups to execute.

The Intercounty Fellowship has been organized by, and is responsible to, the member groups in San Francisco and Marin for the purpose of coordinating the services that individual groups cannot provide. The meeting was held on Wednesday, August 5, 2020, online via Zoom. The meeting was started with a call to order and the Serenity Prayer. The July 2020 minutes and the August 2020 agenda were approved.

Standing Reports

Board Chair, Alan G. Our Bylaws are still being reviewed by lawyers; we will keep you apprised. We are currently in the process of updating the IFAA website (aasfmarin.org) and our database. A special thanks to Richard, Fred and Michael for their hard work on these extensive projects. We’ve established a Communications Committee. They will begin weekly emails via The Buzz. We will have a Town Hall Two debrief/minutes review tonight during Old Business. Town Hall Three has been set for Thursday, August 20 at 6:30 pm. The remote/Zoom details will be posted on the aasfmarin.org Events Calendar.

Treasurer, Renee T. Our report for the month of June is the following: Group Contributions were under budget for the month and year and Individual Contributions were over budget for the month and year. Thank you to everyone for making an Individual Contribution! Our expenses were slightly over budget for the month due to timing, but under for the year. Our rating is still “Excellent.”

Executive Director, Maury P. There is a lot of service happening outside of the Groups (due to COVID-19) and also a lot happening right now with our Committees. Literature sales and pick-ups are still available through the Central Office online bookstore. The IFAA Board started its new term on July 1, 2020. Introduced board members: Alan, Patrick, Renee, Josh, James, Karen, Andy, Lara and Charlie.

Intergroup Committee Reports

The Point, John B. Our August issue is currently online. The local focus is on “Marin City Miracles.” We also included a brief history of The Point. The Point committee is hoping to do some valuable work with the Communication Team. We are always looking for new submissions and are working on the September issue (9th Step/9th Tradition/9th Concept). The Point Zoom committee meeting the 2nd Saturday each month at 12:30 pm. Submissions/contact: thepoint@aasfmarin.org.

San Francisco Public Relations, Guru P. We are working with The Point to highlight Friendship House, one of the few Hospital & Institution (H&I) meetings currently happening. We will be conducting presentations with UCSF. Proposing a local pamphlet for the “Unhoused Alcoholic.” Our committee is learning from Marin PI/CPC on such topics as working with Parks and Recreation to create outdoor meetings and creating an Anonymity Workshop. We have also been involved with an in-person A.A. meeting at the Hotel Whitcomb for 400 unhoused people. SF PI Zoom committee meeting the 2nd Monday each month at 7:00 pm. Contact: sfpr@aasfmarin.org.

San Francisco Teleservice, Luke H. Our committee is doing just fine. Every shift is covered but we will keep making announcements for Teleservice volunteers.

Technology, Taran R. We want to announce Richard A. is our new Co-chair! Also, our new Webservant will be Brian C. Right now, 30 meetings have signed up for G Suite Accounts for email contact. If you want a meeting-specific email address, check this link Group Email Accounts. HelpChat is seeking new volunteers. If interested, contact them at helpchat@aasfmarin.org. Technology Zoom committee meeting the 1st Monday each month at 6:00 pm. Contact: tech@aasfmarin.org.

Service Community Liaison Reports

General Service District 6 (San Francisco), Alison Our delegate returned from virtual assembly. Hot button issues were: use of the Lord’s Prayer, the need for increased inclusivity, GSO is in the red, book sales are down, offering Grapevine gift certificates, is the Big Book still relevant. SF GS Dist. 6 Zoom committee meeting the 2nd Tuesday each month at 7:30 pm. Contact: sfgeneralservice@gmail.com.

Marin PI/CPC, Evan We are collaborating with the Marin Health Department regarding in-person A.A. meetings. We are working with Marin Park and Recreation for establishing outdoor meetings.

Marin PI Zoom committee meeting the 4th Thursday each month at 7:30. Contact: aamarinpicpc@gmail.com.

Marin Teleservice, Amanda We have a few open shifts. Call volume is starting to normalize.

Marin Teleservice Zoom committee meeting the 4th Tuesday each month at 7:30.

General Service District 10 (Marin), Alex Marin is having a Virtual Unity Day. Marin GS Dist. 10 Zoom committee meeting the 3rd Monday each month at 7:30. Concept Study Zoom meeting the 1st Tuesday at 7:00 pm. Contact: recordingsecretarydist10@gmail.com.

Hospital & Institution Committee (H&I), Elena R. We are asking members to make H&I contributions through their individual groups. Several Zoom meetings are being held and the number is increasing. Contributions are decreasing but there is a reserve. We are currently updating the Manual for Prisons Program (available in October). H&I orientations are on hold, however, personal orientations can be requested. Contact: handinorcal.org.

New Business

The Point

The Point would like to propose that our committee be permitted to reach out to those who would like to receive an email notice once a month when the issue comes out, consolidating our regular “Call for Articles.” This list would include all those who used to receive paper copies of The Point in addition to the group who have expressed interest in creating content for the publication. The development of the Communications Committee will include a conversation on how to incorporate The Point’s request.

Old Business

Town Hall Debrief and Follow-up Actions

Alan G. Minutes of the meeting are posted at aafmarin.org/resuming. Presentation on Insurance Considerations; SFDPH website has most up to date COVID-19 numbers; Ken R. presented on Hybrid meetings; Updating meetings listings that will include Outdoor/Hybrid/Zoom.

Poll Results:

  • 17% of meetings are not listed
  • 56% will go back to in-person meetings when there is a vaccine
  • 78% concerned with virus transmission
  • 69% are not currently discussing returning to an in-person meeting

Follow up Actions:

  • Looks like meetings will remain virtual for the foreseeable future
  • Looking at how the bookstore operates with the Central Office closed
  • Send suggestions for Town Hall discussions
  • Topics for Town Hall Three
  • How to keep members safe in Zoom meetings
  • Fellowship opportunities
  • Reaching out to newcomers
  • Digital contributions

What’s On Your Mind?

Question: There have been mentions of the Communication Team. What is that?
Answer: Coordinates The Buzz, content on aasfmarin.org and outgoing communication from Central Office. COVID has created a flurry of communication needs. The Communication Team will be helping keep communication unified and cogent. Nikki will oversee general communication and Alex will coordinate The Buzz.

Question: Are some forms no longer accessible on the website?
Answer: There are new forms coming online and will be updated soon. Once the database migration is complete, please encourage groups to register. The best thing is to have a Secretary and Treasurer register as Trusted Servants and then add an IGR.

Question: Trusted Servant Form – Is there a way for virtual meeting Hosts and Co-hosts to be listed as Trusted Servants?

Answer: Yes, however, ideally it is best for members to stay connected via The Buzz as a one-stop shop. A subscription is available to all and it is a central source for info. Trusted Servant registration is largely to keep communication open between Central Office and groups, while The Buzz informs the wider community.

Comment: As larger meetings are going back to in-person, it may help to create a virtual meeting in addition to the meeting (instead of going Hybrid).

Comment: Encourage people to become Faithful Fivers. Contribute $1 for each year of sobriety.

Question: Does the Secretary’s Monthly announcement sheet still exist? What is the most important thing to report to the groups?
Answer: The Targeted Message and list of events. Most of that information is now being reported in The Buzz. SUBSCRIBE to The Buzz on the aasfmarin.org website and encourage others to sign up too.

Targeted Message

  1. Please check out aafmarin.org/resuming for important information when considering the move back to in-person meetings.
  2. Town Hall Three: 8/20 @ 6:30 pm. Topics include Creating and handling commitments in online groups, creating fellowship opportunities and reaching the newcomer in the age of COVID-19.
  3. Communicate what Intergroup is and does – each of us is part of the Outreach Committee!
    “Intergroup/Central Office is the local AA service provider that brings you aasfmarin.org, our meeting schedule, 12th step support – including 24/7 phone coverage, Sunshine Club meetings and HelpChat, AA literature, group insurance and more.”

Adjourn with the Responsibility Statement

Next Intergroup Meeting is Wednesday, September 2, 2020, location to be determined. Please email development@aasfmarin.org with any questions.

Treasurer’s Report

Month Ended June 2020

For June 2020, Gross Profit (revenue minus COGS) was $17,262, this was under budget by $1,350 due to low bookstore sales. Gross Profit is $14,336 over budget year to date.

Total Operating Expense for June was $26,911, which is higher than our monthly average of $24K. This is due to timing of rent.

The result is a Net Operating Deficit of $9,951 for the month. This leaves the fellowship with a $7,667 surplus year to date.

Group Contributions for June were $9,105, under budget by $2,644. Group contributions are $11,151 under budget year to date. Individual Contributions for June were $7,666, over budget by $4,353. Individual contributions are $33,533 over budget year to date.

Total Unrestricted Cash for June 2020 was $98,445, a decrease of $7,498 from May 2020.  Unrestricted Cash is more than 4x monthly operating expenses.

OVERALL RATING FOR June 2020:       EXCELLENT

INTERGROUP FINANCE RATING SYSTEM

Every month we rate our monthly finances as “Excellent”, “Good”, “Fair” or “Poor”.  Generally speaking, here are the definitions of those terms:

EXCELLENT:  We exceeded our budget.  Our income was greater than our expenses for the month and we have more than two months’ worth of operating expenses in unrestricted cash balances.  Operating expenses are roughly $24K/month, so we’d have over $48K in unrestricted cash balances for the month.  The Intergroup rating has been “excellent” since December 2019.

GOOD: We are meeting our budget.  Our income for the month, or for the YTD, was slightly greater than our expenses and we’d have approximately 1.5 – 2 months of operating expenses in unrestricted cash balances. The last time we were “good” was in November 2019.

FAIR: We are not meeting our budget.  Our expenses were greater than our income for the month and for the YTD – and our unrestricted cash balance would be somewhere between 1 and 1.5x our operating expenses.

POOR: We are not meeting our budget and our unrestricted cash balances fell below one month of operating expenses. The last time we were “poor” was in December 2016.

Update #18: Town Hall #2 was a great success!

On July 16th, Intergroup hosted its second Town Hall. The main topics discussed were liability regarding potential return to in-person meetings, and what “hybrid” meetings might look like. Links to the slides and minutes are here. Ideas for the next Town Hall include a “Trusted Servants Workshop” for online meeting management, focusing on co-hosting/security/spiritual bouncer role and/or using breakout rooms for fellowship and/or tools for supporting newcomers. Have suggestions for additional topics? We’d love to hear them. Send to: aa@aasfmarin.org

Meetings, Meetings, Meetings…

In-person meetings at Gratitude Center and Dry Dock have resumed (with restrictions). Please visit their websites for in-person meeting specifics. Additionally, Marin’s PI/CPC (Public Information / Cooperation with the Professional Community) have connected with the Marin Department of Health and Human Services regarding the potential for outdoor sites as meeting places. More to come on that. 

With this increasing complexity of meeting mediums, our aasfmarin.org website will soon be returning to our former meeting schedule format which has been updated to allow for remote (phone/online) and hybrid meetings. We hope to have it up and running within the next week. Stay tuned for further updates and a Call to Action! Why? In the transition, we may lose some meeting information and we need all hands on deck to help us validate that meeting info is accurate. Please keep an eye out for that communication which will include a link to a new and improved webform for members to use to Register as a Trusted Servant, List a New Meeting, or Update an Existing Meeting. All in the same place! Isn’t that exciting?

Rotation?

Historically, many groups hold elections in June. If you are a new Treasurer or Secretary, please help us out and register as a Trusted Servant as soon as the new form goes live! Along these lines, a gentle reminder to please send in contributions if your term just ended and your group has funds to distribute.

Upcoming Events

The 45th Annual Western Roundup Living Sober Conference 2020 will be held virtually the weekend of August 21 – August 23 and is FREE to register! This is THE oldest & longest running LGBTQ Alcoholics Anonymous conference with Al-Anon participation in the WORLD. See here for more info.

Service Committee Meetings/Orientations:

  • Technology Committee (online) – August 3rd @ 6pm – email tech@aasfmarin.org for an invitation to join the virtual meeting. More info here.
  • Intergroup Representative Orientation (online) – August 4th @ 6:30pm – Meeting link here.
  • Intergroup Meeting (online) – August 5th @ 7pm – Meeting details here.
  • The Point Committee Meeting (online) – August 8th @ 12:30pm – Meeting link here.
  • Golden Gate Young People in A.A. (online) – August 9th @ 12pm – Meeting link here.
  • SF Public Relations Committee (PI/CPC) (online) – August 10th @ 6:30pm – Meeting info here.
  • Marin H&I Orientation (online) – August 11th @ 6:15pm – Meeting link here.
    • Business meeting @ 7:15pm – link here.
  • SF New GSR Orientation (online) – August 11th @ 6:30pm – Meeting info here.

Business meeting @ 7:30pm – link here.

Update #17: Town Hall Two Coming is Tomorrow, July 16!

Our second Town Hall meeting is tomorrow night, Thursday, July 16, from 6:30 to 8:30 PM. We will resume our discussion on considerations for resuming in-person meetings with information on liability and technology for Hybrid meetings. We will also share updates from Intergroup and continue with an open dialog about working together as a community. Updates include some sneak previews and we hope to see many of our SF and Marin members in attendance. We will add additional content here, where the information from the June Town Hall is located, for you to reference during and after the meeting and for all who cannot attend.

While the majority of meetings remain closed – or remote, the IFAA Bookstore is still in operation! You may order literature, books and chips ONLINE at our website. Central Office is closed to walk-in customers, however we will ship (at a reduced rate) via UPS or make your order available for curbside pick up, Monday through Friday, from 10 AM to 4 PM. Please help us get the word out that this service, nor any of our others, have been interrupted.

The summary from our July Intergroup meeting is posted. Included are the IFAA financial reports through May 2020. The July issue of The Point has also been posted and, once again, includes an audio recording. The Point Committee is always looking for content; we’d love to read your stories of experience, strength and hope. Featured articles will be on H&I at Friendship House plus other locally written stories. More information can be found here.

In addition, several service committees will hold their monthly meetings in the second half of this month. Among them are SF H&I, IFAA Archives, SF Teleservice, Marin General Service, Marin PI/CPC, CNCA and the Marin Teleservice (Orientation & Business Meeting). And an advance heads up: the August Intergroup meeting will be on Wednesday, August 5, so mark your calendars! Additional information for each of these … and more … can be found on our Events Calendar.

For the love of dogbirds, please share this information with your social media communities and encourage your A.A. fellows to subscribe to The Buzz. All of our prior updates can be found here.

All decisions will be re-evaluated as the situation changes; we are doing our best and appreciate your support and understanding.

Your IFAA Intergroup | Central Office

The Difference Between Open and Closed A.A. Meetings

An excerpt from The A.A. Group… where it all begins pamphlet published by A.A. World Services:

The purpose of all A.A. group meetings, as the Preamble states, is for A.A. members to “share their experience, strength and hope with each other that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from alcoholism.” Toward this end, A.A. groups have both open and closed meetings.

Closed meetings are for A.A. members only, or for those who have a drinking problem and “have a desire to stop drinking.”

Open meetings are available to anyone interested in Alcoholics Anonymous’ program of recovery from alcoholism. Nonalcoholics may attend open meetings as observers.

At both types of meetings, the A.A. chairperson may request that participants confine their discussion to matters pertaining to recovery from alcoholism.  Whether open or closed, A.A. group meetings are conducted by A.A. members who determine the format of their meetings.

Intergroup News | July 2020

This is an unofficial summary of the July 2020 Intergroup meeting provided for convenience; it is not intended to be the completed approved minutes. For a complete copy of the minutes and full committee reports see “Intergroup” on our website aasfmarin.org.

Our Intergroup exists to support the groups in their common purpose of carrying the A.A. message to the still suffering alcoholic by providing and coordinating services that are difficult for the individual groups to execute.

The Intercounty Fellowship has been organized by, and is responsible to, the member groups in San Francisco and Marin for the purpose of coordinating the services that individual groups cannot provide. The meeting was held on Wednesday, July 1, 2020, online via Zoom. The meeting was started with a call to order and the Serenity Prayer. The June 2020 minutes and the July 2020 agenda were approved.

Standing Reports

Board Chair, Alan G. We want to welcome our new board members Lara, Charlie, and Taran. We held

Board Elections for Chair (Alan), Vice-Chair (Patrick) and Secretary (Josh). Check out Intergroup Committee meetings. All meetings are listed on aasfmarin.org. Board Operations is working to implement a new database for groups. It should help with meeting changes due to COVID-19. Remember to encourage any new Trusted Servants (secretary and treasurer) to register with Intergroup at aasfmarin.org/trusted-servant-registration. Our Intergroup By-laws review is nearing completion, so stay tuned. The Detroit Convention is happening virtually (2020convention.aa.org).

Treasurer, Renee T. The rating for May 2020 is Excellent. Group Contributions were over budget in May (under budget for the year), Individual Contributions also over budget in May and for the year. Expenses are slightly under budget.

Executive Director, Patrick M. (Maury P. is on vacation) The Central Office volunteers are still meeting weekly via Zoom. There has been a slight increase in online literature orders. The Buzz is going strong. We have been increasing connectivity through Teleservice and HelpChat. Another online Town Hall is coming up but will defer that topic to Old Business. The Intergroup Seminar scheduled for September is moving online. Question: What is the Intergroup Seminar? Answer: it is the Conference of Central Office Managers and Intergroup Managers. It occurs annually.

Intergroup Committee Reports

Fellowship, Elena R. Founders Day that occurred on Zoom was a success. Many thanks to the Archives Committee and Jackie B.

The Point, John B. The July issue is online with audio to follow. The Local Focus is on H&I by Guru P. We are always looking for new content, so if you are a writer, artist, attend a great meeting, etc., contact us at thepoint@aasfmarin.org.

San Francisco Public Relations, Peter M. (covering for Guru P.) Participated in the area meeting around how to better serve BIPOC in the area. We’ve been working with H&I to bring literature to people without homes currently being housed in a local hotel. There is a possibility of bringing in a face-to-face A.A. meeting to those residents. Also working with The Point and other media to get the A.A. message out during the COVID-19 pandemic. We meet on the 2nd Monday of each month at 7:00 pm and all members of the fellowship are invited to attend.

Sunshine Club, Clayton B. We’ve had no requests for meetings and have not done any recruiting.

Service Community Liaison Reports

General Service District 6 (San Francisco), Alison Elections are happening right now and General Service is always looking for new representatives. The Delegate Report from Assembly will be on Tuesday, July 14 at the General Service meeting. Summer Assembly is happening and looking for suggestions for workshops. The General Service Office is still in need of funds. Questions about H&I:

Not distributing literature right now but storing it (which has a cost). They prefer group contributions instead of individual contributions. San Quentin looking for men to be sponsors (must have 5+ years). Question: Have you heard any requests for incarcerated women? Answer: The San Quentin program is still male-focused pilot. There may be opportunities through Bridging the Gap. Question: Is H&I just Justin and Steve? A: No. They are piloting the San Quentin sponsorship.

Marin Teleservice, Amanda There has been an influx of people wanting to be of service, so we are keeping a waiting list of those who want to be involved. We meet on the 4th Tuesday each month at 7:30 pm.

Marin PI/CPC We are collaborating with SF Public Relations on BIPOC outreach. Area level discussion will continue next month. We’re exploring outreach to middle schools and EAPs (Employee Assistance Programs) and unions. We meet on the 4th Thursday each month at 7:30 pm.

H&I, Elena The Inmate project at San Quentin is moving from pilot to actual program. We are working on a manual and want to open to other facilities. During the COVID-19 pandemic, it is “correspondence only.” There are 9 H&I meetings happening via Zoom. For H&I business meetings, visit handInorcal.org for info. Right now, orientation meetings are paused.

General Service District 10 (Marin), Alex Similar to District 6, we will present the report from our area delegate. Again, as a reminder, the Convention in Detroit (2020convention.aa.org) will be virtual.

New Business

Insurance Considerations for In-Person meetings during pandemic, Jay M.

If you are in a facility where there are guidelines, adhere to those guidelines. If you are in a place where there are no guidelines, use the state guidelines. Make sure that people are following the guidelines. They must be enforced to protect against liability.

Follow the facility’s guidelines around sign-in sheets; it is the facility that is asking for sign-in not A.A. Question: Should meetings follow state or city guidelines? And what kind of group do A.A. meetings qualify as when reading guidelines? Answer: A.A. meetings definitely are not religious but could use Healthcare Guidelines. Always use the most local guidelines (city in most cases). Question: Regarding the policy through Central Office: does it cover infectious disease? Answer: No. Question: Can we get this summarized on the website? Answer: It has been sent and it will be posted on the website.

Question: What about masks indoors? Answer: We have not published any in-person meetings on the website so far. Intergroup is not suggesting that there are any in-person meetings at this point.

Question: What about having a designated person for each meeting to interface with contact tracers? Answer: Contact tracing does not require disclosing what kind of gathering. Any reporting would simply be disclosed as “a group.”

Old Business

Town Hall debrief and Follow up actions, Alan G.

There were almost 300 people at the Town Hall in June. New page on aasfmarin.org (aasfmarin.org/resuming) contains a list of questions to bring up at you’re A.A. business meetings, a checklist for Social Distancing Protocols, and also contains slides, minutes and Q&A. We plan to update with information from Jay M.

Poll Results

2:1 San Francisco to Marin. Most heard about it through in-meeting announcements and word of mouth. The primary concern about returning is transmission. People not comfortable attending a meeting where people did not wear masks. Most people are waiting until there is a vaccine before returning to an in-person meeting. Most people have not been to a hybrid meeting. The next Town Hall will be on Thursday, July 16 at 6:30 pm (LINK HERE). We are still deciding if there will be pre-registration; may not need it since the last Town Hall was well attended.

What’s on Your Mind?

Question: Is there a sobriety requirement to be an Intergroup rep? Answer: It is up to your group. There is a recommendation for a 2-year requirement but it is a suggestion.

Question: Should that recommendation be lowered? A: You are right; it is one year. But again, it is up to the group.

Targeted Message

  1. Please check out https://aasfmarin.org/resuming for important information when considering the move back to in-person meetings
  2. The next Town Hall will discuss “Hybrid Meetings and Liability Issues/Waivers for In-Person Meetings” will be Thursday, July 16, 6:30 to 8:30 pm
  3. Communicate what Intergroup is and does – each of us is part of the Outreach Committee!
    “Intergroup/Central Office is the local AA service provider that brings you aasfmarin.org, our meeting schedule, 12th step support – including 24/7 phone coverage, Sunshine Club meetings and HelpChat, AA literature, group insurance and more.”

Adjourn with the Responsibility Statement

Next Intergroup Meeting: Wednesday, August 5, 2020, 7:00 pm, location to be determined. Please email development@aasfmarin.org with any questions.

Treasurer’s Report

Month Ended May 2020

For May 2020, Gross Profit (revenue minus COGS) was $23,108, this was over budget by $4,492 due to higher than expected contributions and lower COGS. Gross Profit is $15,686 over budget year to date.

Total Operating Expense for May was $22,879, which is lower than our monthly average of $24K.

The result is a Net Operating Surplus of $286 for the month. This leaves the fellowship with a $17,618 surplus year to date.

Group Contributions for May were $12,614, over budget by $2,724. Group contributions are $8,506 under budget year to date. Individual Contributions for May were $10,544, over budget by $4,211. Individual contributions are $29,179 over budget year to date.

Total Unrestricted Cash for May 2020 was $105,943, an increase of $2,077 from April 2020.  Unrestricted Cash is more than 4x monthly operating expenses.

OVERALL RATING FOR MAY 2020:       EXCELLENT

INTERGROUP FINANCE RATING SYSTEM

Every month we rate our monthly finances as “Excellent”, “Good”, “Fair” or “Poor”.  Generally speaking, here are the definitions of those terms:

EXCELLENT:  We exceeded our budget.  Our income was greater than our expenses for the month and we have more than two months’ worth of operating expenses in unrestricted cash balances.  Operating expenses are roughly $24K/month, so we’d have over $48K in unrestricted cash balances for the month.  The Intergroup rating has been “excellent” since December 2019.

GOOD: We are meeting our budget.  Our income for the month, or for the YTD, was slightly greater than our expenses and we’d have approximately 1.5 – 2 months of operating expenses in unrestricted cash balances. The last time we were “good” was in November 2019.

FAIR: We are not meeting our budget.  Our expenses were greater than our income for the month and for the YTD – and our unrestricted cash balance would be somewhere between 1 and 1.5x our operating expenses.

POOR: We are not meeting our budget and our unrestricted cash balances fell below one month of operating expenses. The last time we were “poor” was in December 2016.