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Al-Anon and Alateen Family Groups in Santa Barbara

District 8 Announcements and News

The twenty-eight (28), or so, Al-Anon and Alateen meetings (in both English and Spanish) in the Santa Barbara and Santa Ynez Valley areas make-up District 8. District 8 is part of Southern California World Service (SCWS) also know as Area 4.

Each month, at the District 8 meeting, your Group Representative (GR) is assigned to take back to their meeting specific information to share with the group. Some of these items are linked from the Home Page News. Below are the current "Take Back to Your Meeting" announcements.

News for August 2019

  • AA Convention with Al-Anon Participation
    The 2019 convention committee meeting is the 3rd Thursday of the month at Mulligans. Come join the fun!
    Registration is open! Registrations can be made online or mailed in. There are tri-fold brochures now available. Register ASAP as participation is limited and may sell out. Registration Scholarship is available, luncheon not included. See instructions on our website.

  • Public Outreach
    Sanctuary Center lists Al-Anon as a resource and is having a BBQ Sept 20th. They have invited us to participate. Contact Tommie Rae if you are interested in attending with her. 805-845-3015

  • Newcomer Meeting Rotation of Leadership
    Our current Coordinator, Debra, has been doing a wonderful job with this service position since September 2016. She is ready to rotate leadership. If you are interested in taking this position, please contact Jocelyn at

    Debra is happy to help with the transition and provide all the information she has regarding leaders and backups and can forward all documents she has saved to her computer files.

    More about Beginner's Meetings

    The excerpt is copied from: Al-anon Groups at Work, 2014 - 17
    Beginners' meetings (pages 37, 41, 45)

    Beginners' Meetings: Beginners' meetings are an important part of Al-Anon Family Groups. Experienced Al-Anon/Alateen members introduce new- comers to the Al-Anon program, as well as inform them about alcoholism as a disease with far-reaching effects. Newcomers are given the opportunity to discuss their feelings with long-time members. These meetings may focus on the first three Steps to introduce newcomers to our program and acquaint them with various basic pieces of literature. Beginners' meetings may be held as a series. Some Al-Anon groups offer beginner topics as a way to attract newer members to attend. These groups are registered as regular Al-Anon groups and have a Group Representative. They may use "Beginner" as part of their group name. Other groups may decide to hold special beginners' meetings in conjunction with the regular group meeting, to provide newcomers with a simple introduction to Al-Anon. These beginners' meetings are served by the Group Representative of the hosting Al-Anon group, and do not register as a separate group. There is a space on the Al-Anon Group Registration/Change form (GR-1) to indicate if a group offers such a beginners' meeting. Guidelines and newcomer materials are available for beginners' meetings. The Beginners' Meeting Guideline (G-2) is posted on the Al-Anon/Alateen Members' Web site, and can be downloaded and printed as needed for members' use.

    Welcoming New Members: The newcomer to Al-Anon/Alateen is often nervous, lonely, and usually desperate. In addition to the help, guidance, and literature provided by the group, individual attention and the friendship of an established member can be of great help. New members may have had personal contact with a member before their first meeting. If a group has a beginners' meeting, newcomers to Al-Anon/ Alateen are encouraged to attend. After the new members have attended a number of regular meetings, group members encourage them to express themselves, ask them to read aloud the Serenity Prayer, the Suggested Preamble, or in some small way take part in the group functions so they will feel they belong. Where there is no beginners' meeting, members can briefly share their experience, strength, and hope; provide the newcomers with Conference Approved Literature (possibly a Newcomer Packet [K-10]); urge them to read the material; and share with them the value of using the program to cope with problems. It is helpful to provide new members of the group with an explanation of the group's meeting format, method of sharing, and that in Al-Anon meetings, members refrain from discussing specific religious tenets, therapies, and other affiliations. It is also helpful to keep in touch with the new members between meetings. For more information, see the Guideline Beginners' Meetings (G-2).

    Beginners' Meetings: When newcomers are present, the group may spend some or all of the meeting time welcoming the newcomer by having one or more members share their reasons for coming to Al-Anon and how it has helped them. Some beginners' meeting topics might be discussion of one of the first three Steps, detachment, the Serenity Prayer, or a slogan. The Beginners' Meeting Guideline (G-2) is posted on the Members' Web site.