Why start a new meeting?
1.) To be of service to SLAA community and help it grow. The more meetings we have, the stronger our fellowship will get. The more people we attract, the more opportunities we have for our recovery. Imagine how you’re going to feel knowing that you started something that will serve a great purpose to those who need it for many years to come!
2.) You want more meetings with the focus that interests you. We are all different in our patterns of sex and love addiction. Each meeting has a focus on a particular type of behavior that may be of more interest to some individuals, and have less benefits to others, as their patterns are different. If you would like to see a meeting that focuses on your area of interest, what better way than to start one yourself?
3.) Location location location. We get a lot of inquiries over the phone and via email for meetings in areas far from Los Angeles, such as San Bernardino or Upland. There are many people who live far away from Los Angeles who need their meetings and recovery. They either have to settle for a long commute, or online and phone meetings that are not even half as beneficial as live meetings. If you want to be of service to people in your area as well as yourself, why not start a new meeting nearby?
Requirements for starting a new meeting
Our third tradition of S.L.A.A. states: “The only requirement for S.L.A.A. membership is the desire to stop living out a pattern of sex and love addiction. Any two or more persons gathered together for mutual aid in recovering from sex and love addiction may call themselves an S.L.A.A. group, provided that as a group they have no other affiliation.”
Therefore the only requirements to start an new S.L.A.A. meeting is a desire to do so and to have at least one other person willing to support you in it. It is also required that you follow all our Twelve Traditions of S.L.A.A. when you start a new meeting. In other words, any S.L.A.A. member can start a meeting if he or she really wants to. It is however suggested that before you do you at least go to several meetings and familiarize yourself with the format.
Suggested procedures on how to start a meeting
- Have a desire to start a meeting with a focus and location in mind.
- Talk to other S.L.A.A. members about your idea and ask them if they want to support you on that.
- Purchase an S.L.A.A. meeting Starter Kit from F.W.S. A Starter Kit will contain all the necessary materials to get a meeting started (including some literature). Or download the basic Starter Kit (not including literature) for free!
- Find a location, time and day for your meeting. Most places charge rent to use the room, so look around before deciding on a place. Suggested places to look into are churches, community centers, hospitals and other places that provide rooms for 12 step meetings.
- After you found your ideal place and time, set the date for your first meeting and start spreading the word around.
- Once your meeting is going, schedule a business meeting where you can elect a secretary, literature person, a treasurer and an intergroup representative as well as any other service positions you may require for your meeting.
- Have your intergroup representative attend two intergroup meetings in a row where he or she can announce your meeting to other members and have it added to our meeting list.
- As an additional reference, the S.L.A.A. Basic Text discusses this in detail under chapter 7, “Starting an S.L.A.A. Group” (pgs. 121-138)
Suggestions on how you can get more people to show up at your meeting
- Make good flyers for your meeting. Besides the location, day and time, you might want to add a description of your meeting as well as the message it carries to the sex and love addicts who still suffer. Think about the purpose of your meeting and what is so great and unique about it.
- Announce your meeting at other meetings. Create as many flyers as you can, make announcements at other meetings during the time provided and have the flyers available for people. It is also a good idea to ask other S.L.A.A. members to help you by giving them a bunch of flyers they can bring to other meetings.
- Go to the intergroup meeting or have an intergroup representative bring your flyers to the intergroup meeting. It is a good way to spread the word by making it known to intergroup members. Each representative can take your flyers and bring them back to their meetings and make announcements about it.
- Contact the Webmaster, The Bottom Line editor, and the Phone Line Representative about your meeting. Please use the contact form on the New Meetings page.