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Effective Avenues

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Q.
I am a just a member of OA; I hold no special service position. Our face-to-face meetings are floundering with a steady decline in attendance. May I ask for assistance to change this? I know I can place brochures and OA materials out in the community as long as our Tradition of anonymity is not broken. Would it be allowable for me to hand out OA literature myself and explain program directly to others?

A.
Thank you so much for your concern about the decline in attendance at your local meetings, and for your willingness to do service to reverse the trend.

While we need always maintain personal anonymity at the level of public media and respect the anonymity of other OA members, you choose how to treat your own personal anonymity in your personal interactions, both in person and online. You can use Carrying the Message when speaking to someone about OA for the first time.

Two effective avenues for letting people know about OA are public information and professional outreach. At oa.org/documents, you’ll find both “Public Information Suggestions” and “Professional Outreach” sections, plus more suggestions for both kinds of service under “Guidelines.” The most important thing about these efforts is that they are best undertaken by a group of committed people, like your local intergroup. If you’re not already a member of your intergroup, you can contact them and let them know you wish to help.

Other suggestions include doing these things to keep the OA program attractive:

  • Keep working Step Twelve: carry the message to compulsive eaters. This includes being a sponsor and encouraging new sponsors.
  • Keep reaching out to the public to attract newcomers to our meetings. Reach out to professionals so they, too, can encourage compulsive eaters to come to OA.
  • Maintain strong meetings so that members stay and grow in the program. Use the Strong Meeting Checklist at oa.org/documents under “Group Support.” Give service.
  • Help all members become and remain abstinent.
  • Work the Tools and the Steps.
  • Keep coming back!

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