There is a lot of concern about how we can still reach out to newcomers, and that newcomers will not want to attend phone or online meetings. Here are some suggestions:
- During this unprecedented time, GOING TO ANY LENGTHS means attending online and phone meetings even if we would prefer to meet in-person. It’s true that many of us still managed to get alcohol under any circumstance. However, this is different. If you know a newcomer, connect with them by phone and agree to meet them at a virtual meeting. They will feel less alone if you are there too.
- Secretaries might consider asking at the beginning of each meeting if any newcomers are present and/or leave some time for newcomers to speak in the last 5 minutes of a meeting. If there’s anyone who needs extra support, maybe they can be encouraged to speak up during the meeting.
- One group gave out the hotline number for Central Office at the end of the meeting.
- Central Office and Teleservice are getting calls from people who need to talk and connect in order to stay sober. We are putting them in touch with people on our 12th Step list so we can keep the phone lines open for other calls. That means 12th Step calls will be increasing; please check your messages regularly and call us back ASAP.
- A great way to be of service during this time is to help the elders in our community who may not be very tech savvy and might be intimidated by this transition to online meetings. Have one-on-one chats with them through Zoom and show them how to do all of the items above. This will help them feel confident with the tools and ensure they are not isolated in their inability to physically get to a meeting.
- Things are still evolving. If you have other ideas about how to reach out to newcomers, please let us know!