Minutes for May 4th 2019

Monthly EC Teleconference

14:00 CET




A.  Call to Order:  Please be sure that any background noises in your area are eliminated since the sounds make it difficult for participants to hear.  When speaking, please say your name first. This will help us record your name with your input. Thank you.

1)  Open with the Serenity Prayer


2)  Tradition of the Month – Tradition 5 


B.  Roll Call of new members from European Countries:  

Chair of Meeting – 

European Committee Present:

Majbrit – EC Chair & WSO Board Member, Denmark

Jeffrey – Chair of Finance/ Literature Subcommittees – absent

Charlie C – EC & WSO Chair of board of trustees 

Tanya M – Secretary

Intro by Charlie 

Time for major changes on EC – Majbrit entering last year on Board, Tanya and Jeffrey also leaving for personal reasons.  For those in Sweden last week, loads of change in European fellowships – translating, publishing and growing.  Last week was great.

Time for Europeans to have a more central role for taking lead in European service.

Needs some officers on the EC and WSO Board.  Hoping some Europeans will be on WSO Board.  It’s time that people can work together on what we think is most appropriate service model going forward.

Please introduce yourselves and share your thoughts on what you’d like 6-12 months to help WSO better serve you and EC work more harmoniously.

Majbrit.  Amends for the workshop in Sweden – due to overwork, overwhelm and being tired.  Mixed messages and unclear.  Should have followed my intuition and asked “what do we want out of this working session?”  It’s been my wish that more people would step up to do service.  We need support.  Officers of EC decided Minsk for European Meeting in end of July. Entire trip – food, flights, meeting is approx 300 Euros.  It is a great opportunity to get members of new European Committee together to work together with a set agenda prior to the meeting.  It’s my hope we can achieve this.

Roll Call of EC Country Representatives & Guests:

Marc, NL – 

Arjan, NL – 

Pelle, Sweden – 

Dalia, Israel – 

Mikkel, Denmark – 

Hasse, Denmark

Frederik, Sweden

Alexia, German-speaking IG

Hanne, Finland

Veronika, Switzerland


Niklas, Sweden

Laura, California

Alexandra, Switzerland

Kadri Liisa Estonia

Pat, UK

Discussion about biggest needs and what you’d like to see happen:

Hasse – 

Caroline – why are ACA meetings secret meetings?  Why not let people know?  It seems to be a taboo.  As we are talking about changes to the meetings – to make it less secret.  If it’s on social media, with discretion, more people may come.

Laura – clarifying if it’s about anti-predatory behaviour


How would you like to see the European 

Alexia – reply to Caroline – Traditions – we don’t promote for 12 step fellowships.

Mark – my vision of the future is to make a difference – European service organisation with more autonomy for Europe and more direct guidance.  7th Tradition would come into future ESO so better finance in Europe. Structure to have MPS, distribution and our own structure – liked to WSO.  To make it more financially independent which creates more stability in Europe.  Although we are all ACA’s there is a difference between Europeans and US mentality. 

Hasse – really liked what I heard in Sweden.  Think it’s important in establishing a new EC – needs a structural change.  Some precisions for country representatives and discuss what would be meaningful senior positions in the EC.

Majbrit – on strategic planning meeting the WSO discussed European 7th Traditions coming into a European bank account.  In notes I sent I suggested some positions but also important that we get officers and vice-chairs to these roles also so we share all this workload.

Veronika – re financial, Switzerland donated to Europe.  Is there an account yet.  Prefer to donate to Europe.  Future Europe/WSO – I’ve been calling into WSO meetings but stopped as it was about literature.  Events were generally organised based on where literature was being published.  We’re all volunteers.  How to prepare people giving workshops in conventions to give the ACA message.  I’m not sure what’s needed as WSO needs to be more clear about presenters have already done the steps before doing workshops.  Should be better qualified.  Yes, a small community but it’s not so clear.  Important for member security.

Mikkel – done lots of service over last 3 years with Mikkel.  Concern is one of time in coming year and inclusion.  Thinks there’s urgency with Majbrit leaving in one year.  I recognise huge amount of work.  Been concerned about

  1. time – need to ensure Experience and knowledge of service structure is handed over to people willing to set up.  Need a meeting to set up service structure in Minsk
  2. Inclusion – we need to find a way that people feel included in process.  Understands that there hasn’t been a structure in place and it’s grown. Has felt dismissed in his offers.  Need to be  abiding by traditions, we do not govern and whoever is willing to do service and so whoever wants to do service is encouraged.  Has some resentment at being dismissed.  At first World Conference in DelRay, officers seemed overworked.  ACA’s hard to let go and easy to get overwhelmed.  Hope we can have a structure and use the knowledge and experience handed over.

Pelle, Sweden – vision in Malmo – we could have an annual European convention.  If we could change 7th tradition to build a functioning service structure.  Also hearing Mike’s suggestions.  Notes and demands on being a European Service Structure, feels that I don’t qualify as I’ve not done National service but with my organisational skills and willingness to do service.  To get involved, get introduced and what is needed, what we want and what I need to learn Concepts and Traditions. What do we need now to push this forward.

????? TM – Concepts & Traditions online workshops

Hasse, Denmark – first goal to start constituting a committee in Minsk in July.  How could this look in 6 months – 3-4 members in 6 months.  That seems do-able.  Shares experience that EC has seemed a bit closed and not taking new members in 4 years.  Great that this change is coming.

Frederik, Sweden – thanks for all.  I have seen the memo and agrees with it.  Fan of structure and guidelines.  Thinks it’s important that guidelines are created from the beginning so others coming in later know what is expected.  Also about having the meeting in Minsk and much can be achieved.  Service sponsor is a great idea.  Literature sales and more talk about 7th Tradition.  Good to have Europe have own account and 7th Tradition.  There’s not much coming in from Europe.  We’re small but discussing importance can raise awareness.  Regarding qualifications for service sponsorship … we need people to do service and it’s good if they have knowledge of concepts and traditions.  Maybe we can have two people – one with the knowledge and one to learn from them?  Minsk will help a lot.  

Mark, NL – clarifying earlier point. IF we stay on WSO committee, all money from books sold in Europe will go to Europe but still under flag of WSO.  Best to make our own service structure as a trial and can return to a committee.

Majbrit – one of the things as Trustee on WSO Board is Fiduciary responsibility = responsibility for the funds and how the fellowship money is spent.  It may be premature to make a WSO equivalent but important to create committees and that 7th Tradition goes towards that.  Then we can have more help out to new fellowships to help them grow.

I offer my experience as a service sponsor.  Mostly Concepts and Traditions important – principals before personalities.

Alexia, Germany – my vision for next months is meeting in Minsk to set up working groups for the different points as service structure, translations, sponsors, etc but maybe start by having own communication channel on Slack so people can say what they’re interested in to prepare documents for Minsk. Then everything is prepared before Minsk.

Vision for working groups is they put something together that can be re-written as proposal for next ABC.  To ask entire ACA fellowship if they’re willing that we create our own organisation – European service organisation or committee.

Dalia, Israel – first time calling into this EC meeting.

Charlie – in The US we’re beginning to form regions to allow different perspectives.  Board didn’t develop that model for Europe without discussion.  At Minsk, pre and post, this model could be considered – regions. We have limits with WSO – eg if you organized as a separate region with different impact to current EC.  Every idea is on the table just now.

Re inclusion if people not on EC now take the lead in doing these working groups – best committees will be others on the call.  Now is the time to let drop all perceived barriers.  Feel free to participate in everything going forward.

Alexia, Germany – Marc suggested having our own MPS committee as this could create regions.  Also open the floor for Europe, Asia and Africa.  And to include Israel.  Create our own regions.

Marc, NL – heard good things and glad Majbrit mentioned principals before personalities.  I do service so my program will grow.  I don’t want insanity that comes from being personality.

Arjan, NL – agrees with Alexia however feels Europe is good to have decision-making as close to local groups and IGs. Opening to Asia and Africa would be too far away and removed from the discions making, Israel has a similar culture Africa, Asia are different cultures.  Had a friend who wrote about Israelis culture connection to Europe

Charlie – instinct is to allow the call to go a bit longer; is that OK?

Sylvia, Spain – we have funds from sale of books we wish to 

Going to organise Spanish convention late Sept and invite all to come to Madrid for a weekend convention.

Charlie – 

Majbrit – my vision of new unified Europe.  Loved the way structure works in Denmark and Scandinavia with GC.  I’d love to see these committees formed in coming months and happy to help these.  Important to get a chair for each of these committees.  Re requirements for being a service sponsor. (5 years in ACA) These were implemented by WSO as board requirements  as a trustee. These were meant to be a suggestions. People who has organisation skills but don’t meet all requirements can of course be included.  We need help to unify and help other fellowships.

Charlie – 

Praivi, Finland – 22.59 – interesting conversation.  Europe should be more active. 30 years in Finland but still challenges in talking about and implementing traditions with the GI/groups.

Mikkel, Denmark – a lot of these discussions regarding principal of breaking isolation. Good to break the isolation of fellowships and meet other fellowships.  Region talk might be later – language or geographical affinity.  Later.  Important now – MPS committee – service structure and a structure to enhance sharing experience.  Denmark we have a good structure and good service. We went through all the infant diseases our GC works because everyone is included.

There’s lots of experience in European fellowship. 
Literature committee.  Jeffrey has done great work and more help needed. 

If we get these structures with more solid Europe can get financial independence LaterOne step at a time … 

Alexia, Germany – agree with Mikkel’s suggestion and propose a motion to set up a Slack communication channel to keep in touch for MPS, Literature AND development working group for papers for Minsk event.  Committee for Service.

Majbrit – offer that I have the list of people from Sweden workshops who 

I’ll invite everyone into Slack

Kaadri-Liisa, Estonia – there is a Slack group already for Europe

Alexia, German – I suggest a separate European channel.

Mark, NL, we could move this discussion to Slack

Laura – point of order re the motion and second

Charlie, clarity of motion – create a discussion channel so people can discuss before Minsk.   Alexia’s motion is to create a Slack Channel – part of or separate to WSO network?  (SEPARATE).

Charlie – really important

Edmondas – Don’t know how Slack works but would like to see EC remaining connected to WSO due to massive amount of experience.  We’re not ready yet to build a separate Service region and it’s not needed yet.

Alexia, Germany – motion is to have a separate working group on Slack for conversation NOT to separate from WSO

Veronika, Switzerland – quick insight – great idea for communication channel for Europe.  Why not to have dates where we use Zoom to see and talk and have a person with topics collected and then have discussion on the next meeting.  

Charlie – regarding the Traditions, as far as a European Slack channel with people on this call become members. It’ll take one hour only.  Good to make it available and we can make it available.  If that’s separate, then 4th Tradition says – you’re free to do that too.  Sounds like most want a written channel to get ready for Minsk.

Mikkel, Denmark – important to do both – TC shows it’s important to talk. Written language is limited.  Better if we could see each other.  TC is right forum to move forward.  Written forums some people take over.  TC with a chair allows things to be discussed.

Pelle – Hard to follow conversation as unsure what Slack is.   

Ch – like WhatsApp, discussion board

Alexia – you can also share documents and have channels for different committees.

Niklas – It’s hard to talk on this forum without being thanked.  It would be better to have a chair, list of people, ability to raise your hand- this tool isn’t very effective.

Charlie  – WSO also has Zoom.  What was that other platform?  

Pelle – adobe connect.

Veronika – Zoom is more stable than Skype

Charlie – we can get another account for this. Providing the technology for the comms is important.  We can provide this support.  WSO can set up a Slack channel.  Alexia – if you want to do that, up to you.  Please repeat motion

Alexia – postpone motion as I see some people don’t have Slack.  Until next call? We can have suggestions and get group Conscience.

Charlie – set up a temporary platform and we’ll have a video.

  1. You seem it’s important for European countries to talk.  Minsk seems important to work through a plan
  2. Can there be separate sub-committees – service, literature
  3. A follow up call. The EC has this on first sat of the month – this will continue.  When’s a good time – 2 weeks or a month or To get more into nuts and bolts

Majbrit – suggests we set up working committees and have intermediate meetings between the big calls. Also set up as suggested a Zoom special number as this is dysfunction without being able to raise our hands.

Re Minsk – it’s in Belarus and no visa requirements so people from all over can go in for 7 days.  Also we’re doing as much as we can for a flyer about Minsk.  Thank you all for your input.  Much appreciated.

Pelle, Sweden – visa is only if you FLY in to Belarus.

Alexia, Germany – FCC also has also online meetings with desktop app can have video and screen sharing.

Charlie – feels like helpful to have a temporary organising committee of 5 on next time for the call – best platform – Zoom or Free Conf Call. 

Would anyone be ready for an organising team?





Continue with monthly meeting – 1st of June – 

Charlie – glad so many people who are on the call want to 

I’ll be there as a resource, as will Majbrit.

Feels there’s a lot of strength on the call.

Look forward how to people define their needs and we’ll support it.

Future of service will grow and benefit immensely from this.

Next – org team will get together.

WSO – we’ll invite in everyone so there’s one community

All join for June call

If you think we don’t have your email address, send to [email protected]

Frederik – nice if 4 already on EC should be included

Charlie – way things have been done in the past.  Everyone’s suggestions are welcomed moving forward

Mikkel – we’ve discussed

In Denmark our handbook – ACA makes decisions out of GC – is that a structure we want to use. We discuss until there’s consensus to include minority.  One of inclusion is to 

Way to get most people moving forward.

Charlie – did you feel that today’s conversation followed that?

Mikkel – usually In service groups, if discussed long enough, you’ll get an outcome.  Voting should be last option.


Charlie – last questions before closing 

Thanks for your time & effort

We’ll talk in a month.

Please review.

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