Experience regarding starting f2f meetings

Business topics for local face-to-face meetings or meetups
Scott
Posts: 166
Joined: Thu Nov 19, 2020 10:53 pm

Experience regarding starting f2f meetings

Post by Scott »

There are several ways to approach starting a meeting.  My approach is to have at least two people who are committed to attending the meeting on time every week.  Preferably three, in case one or two of the regulars can't make it, so that a newcomer doesn't find an empty room.

Then pick a time and place that works for everyone.  Picking a time and place when still alone and hoping others will join, when the time and/or place easily might not work for the few other people interested, is much less likely to work well.

When there are only 2-3 people, the location doesn't have to be a nice meeting room.  It could be a semi-private table in a cafe or an outdoor spot.  I think that once there are four people it becomes important to have a private room in a library, city meeting space, recovery club, or church.  I set up a couple of AA meetings and had very informal agreements on rent payments which worked fine.  For now, it's probably best to aim for a free space.

I also think that having a written format is very helpful.  And having a beginner-focused reading.

I hope you soon have others joining you!  Let me know if I can help with putting directions or contact info on the website.
ADH
Posts: 23
Joined: Fri Nov 20, 2020 10:46 pm

Experience regarding starting f2f meetings

Post by ADH »

Me and the other guy starting our meeting in Gouda (NL) are respectively 44 and 33. We may get a lot of newcomers that are young (experience with Amsterdam has shown that many newcomers may be teenagers). How do we make these youngsters feel comfortable when the people present are a LOT older as them?
Scott
Posts: 166
Joined: Thu Nov 19, 2020 10:53 pm

Experience regarding starting f2f meetings

Post by Scott »

When I was 23 and walked into my first recovery meeting, I was not looking to be surrounded by only people my age.  While it was important to see that other people my age were abstaining and recovering, I got more from the older members who modeled long term recovery, offered experience and guidance, and told me (by sharing their stories) how my life would unfold if I continued down the path of active addiction.

To help any newcomer, he or she needs to want help.  If a teen newcomer wants help, I think that shared stories and experience will help him or her the same way it helps anyone of any age.  If a teen newcomer doesn't want help, all that we can do is talk about the big red flags that we used to deny but now understand show a very serious, debilitating, progressive problem.  The unwilling person brought to a meeting by a parent is not going to change or recover, but seeds can be planted for the future.  When those red flags pop up in their lives, they will remember what we said.  They will remember that CGAA members used to be in their position but are now successfully abstaining and living better game-free lives.

How do we make these youngsters feel comfortable

Newcomers of any age aren't going to feel comfortable at first.  The best we can do is make them feel welcome and wanted and understood and accepted and deserving of support.
Snowdrops
Posts: 0
Joined: Fri Nov 20, 2020 10:46 pm

Experience regarding starting f2f meetings

Post by Snowdrops »

Vv
JustSomePatrick
Posts: 0
Joined: Fri Nov 20, 2020 10:46 pm

Experience regarding starting f2f meetings

Post by JustSomePatrick »

Hey I came across this chat and was wondering how the meeting progressed. Is it still being held?
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