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The Cocaine Anonymous Group (Meeting)

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From the C.A. World Service Manual (Revised July 20, 2003); May not reflect changes made at 2003 World Service Conference.

Definition of a Cocaine Anonymous“GROUP”

A meeting is when two or more people gather together to share their experience, strength and hope with each other.

A meeting may call itself a C.A. Group when:

  1. The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop using cocaine and all other mind-altering
    substances.
  2. It is fully self-supporting.
  3. Its primary purpose is to help addicts recover through the Twelve Steps of C.A.
  4. It has no outside affiliations.
  5. It has no opinion on outside issues.
  6. Its public relations policy is based on attraction rather than promotion.

THE C.A. GROUP

The basic unit in C.A. is the local Group, which is autonomous except in matters affecting other Groups or C.A. as a whole. The Group has but one primary purpose, which is to help others to recover through the Twelve suggested Steps. Each Group is self-supporting through its own contributions. As the Twelve Steps are our guide to recovery, the Twelve Traditions are our guide to Group unity, growth and discipline. Its members maintain their personal anonymity at the level of press, radio, television and films. The importance of the Group, what it constitutes and its functions cannot be stressed enough. Maintenance of our recovery depends on the sharing of our experiences, strength and hope with each other, thus helping us to identify and understand the nature of our disease.

Most addicts in C.A. achieve and sustain their recovery as a result of their participation in the activities of the Group. The Group is the heart of Cocaine Anonymous and it is vital to the new member. It is equally important to those who have achieved recovery as a result of the program. They may continue to participate and receive assistance from the Group.

The Group's total responsibility is perhaps best expressed by the First Tradition:

"Our common welfare should come first; personal recovery depends upon C.A. unity."

Most meetings follow a more or less set format, although distinctive variations have developed. It is our experience that many meetings begin or end with some form of prayer. While each CA group is autonomous, and adopts its own format, CA as such never endorses, opposes or affiliates, expressed or implied, with any sect, denomination, politics, organization or institution. A leader describes the C.A. program briefly for the benefit of the newcomers, and then turns the meeting over to a speaker or to participation. A "Speaker Meeting" involves one or more speakers, who relate their personal histories, and their experience of recovery in Cocaine Anonymous. A “Participation Meeting” involves individuals voluntarily sharing their thoughts and feelings.

Some time during the meeting, there is usually a period for C.A. related announcements of interest to the meeting. A collection is taken to cover rent, literature and chips, refreshments, contributions to the District, Area and World Service Office as per the 7th Tradition. Many groups hold a business meeting monthly or at other intervals to discuss such items as: group finances, distribution of 7th Tradition, meeting format, election of trusted servants, etc. It is suggested that records be kept of group business meeting decisions. Each group is autonomous, and the group conscience decides how business meetings may be conducted.

Those attending meetings are reminded that any opinions or interpretations they may hear are solely those of the speaker or participant involved. All members are free to interpret the recovery program in their own terms, but none can speak for the local Group or C.A. as a whole.

TYPES OF MEETINGS/GROUPS
OPEN
Attended by C.A. members, their families, friends and other interested people.
CLOSED
Attendance is limited to C.A. members only.
STEP STUDY
Study and discuss the Twelve Steps with the Group.
BOOK STUDY
Study and discuss with the Group any of these books: Alcoholics Anonymous (the “Big
Book”), Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions (“12 and 12”), Hope, Faith & Courage—
Stories from the Fellowship of Cocaine Anonymous (the “C.A. Story Book”).

GROUP SERVANTS

"For our group purpose there is but one ultimate authority — a loving God as He may express Himself in our group conscience. Our leaders are but trusted servants; they do not govern."

OUR SECOND TRADITION


CA groups may create such service positions, as they deem necessary to carry on the group functions with such job duties and sobriety requirements, as they feel appropriate. Such positions by way of illustration might include: Chairperson, Vice Chairperson, Literature, Coffeemaker/Hospitality, Greeter, etc. The suggested business
positions of groups are:

GROUP SERVICE REPRESENTATIVE (GSR)

Suggested sober time: One year
Term: One year

The GSR position is probably the most important service position for which a member can be elected. Great care should be taken with this choice; the quality of the District/Area Services and ultimately World Services can only be as good as those choices the individual Groups make. As with the Secretaries, GSR candidates should only accept positions for those Groups that they regularly attend (50% of the time). They are the ones who will carry the information back to the Group as to what is going on in our Fellowship on a District/Area level as well as the World level.

It should be understood that a GSR does not require Group approval to vote on matters affecting the Group or C.A. as a whole, although it is the GSR responsibility to vote mindful of the group conscience. (See Concept 3). A good GSR is familiar with the C.A. World Service Manual and the Twelve Concepts of World Services. If the GSR cannot attend, an Alternate should attend. The person elected GSR should be trusted with the Group vote. Before accepting a nomination for GSR, the nominee must consider the level of commitment as well as the sacrifice of time involved.

Duties and Responsibilities:

  1. Sees that the Traditions are followed within the Group.
  2. Attends all appropriate business meetings.
  3. Conducts communication between the Group, District and Area.
  4. Reads/reviews communications from the District, Area and World Service.


ALTERNATE GSR

The purpose and responsibility of the Alternate GSR is to assist the GSR and to assume the responsibilities of the GSR when necessary.

Suggested requirements and qualifications are the same as those for GSR.

SECRETARY

Suggested sober time: Six Months
Term: One year

The Secretary is a trusted servant whose responsibility is to provide the Group with the leadership best suited to assist the recovery of the members through utilization of the C.A. Program.

Duties and Responsibilities:

  1. See that the Traditions are being followed within the Group.
  2. Follow the format in accordance with the group conscience.
  3. See that the responsibilities of the other Group servants are met.
  4. See that Seventh Tradition contributions of the members are collected and that a record is kept of the Group's income and expenses.
  5. See that the Group is represented at the District or Area Service Meeting.
  6. See that rent for the meeting space is paid and that the Group's monthly contribution is forwarded to the District, Area and/or World Service Office.
  7. Keep an accurate, up-to-date record of changes of the group conscience.
  8. Keep a record of each officer's election date.
  9. Display C.A. literature and schedules.

GROUP TREASURER

Suggested sober time: One Year
Suggested prior service time: Six Months
Term: One Year

Duties and Responsibilities:

  1. Keeps an accurate bookkeeping system.
  2. When applicable, maintains Group bank account(s) with checks requiring two signatures.
  3. Gives financial reports to the Group regularly.
  4. Pays all Group expenses.
  5. Passes on contributions to the District/Area and/or the World Service Office.

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