Western States Zonal Forum – Albuquerque, N.M. – 4 February-6 February, 2011
Download this in PDF format here.
Download this in PDF format here.
Alaska – Robert G., RD (thanks, Skype!)
Arizona – Ken F., RD; Jim B., AD
California Inland – Oscar L., RD
California Midstate – Doug C., RD; Robin P., AD
Northern California – Matt S., RD; Traci P., AD
Pacific Cascade – Mike Mc., RD; Lisa C., AD
Region 51 – Shelly S., RD; Ira Z., AD
Rio Grande – Laura B., RD; Freddy O., AD
*San Diego/Imperial – Pam J., RD; Nila C., AD
Southern California – Ken M., RD; Deb W., AD
Washington/N. Idaho –Dan F., RD; Juila RV, AD
NAWS Board – Ron H.
Meeting Facilitator – Jim W.
Meeting Recorder – Jeff P.
Central California, Sierra Sage
5 Feb. 2011
Southern California Region
WSZF REPORT 2011
Our region has approximately 1330 meetings and 270 Spanish Speaking meetings throughout its 20 areas. Of those 1330 meetings, 4 are Armenian, 1 is Farsi, and 2 are American Sign Language.
Our Region meets every month on the third Sunday. We still have standing committees that provide direct services on behalf of the Areas of our Region.
Regional Service Office (RSO): Our RSO is maintaining itself. They are still below their prudent reserve but are working on operating more efficiently. The RSO carries insurance for all of the meetings listed in our Regional Directory as well all events listed on our Regional Calendar. They are also now offering to cover the four Area Conventions held within our Region. They have just renewed their lease for another 5 years.
Hospitals and Institutions (H&I): All 20 areas including the Spanish Speaking area attend or send a report to the monthly H&I subcommittee meeting. The region carries 55 panels that go into Institutions within our Region that would be difficult for the Areas to facilitate. The 20 areas, along with the Spanish Speaking Area carry approximately 716 panels. The subcommittee holds an annual Learning Day in the month of May. This year the event will be held in the San Fernando Valley Area.
Public Information (PI): The subcommittee continues to reach out and inform the community about Narcotics Anonymous. This is also the committee that coordinates the facilitation of requests for presentations that are forwarded to us from the WSO. They also continue in their efforts to do presentations, booth sittings, and community literature distribution.
They also host a quarterly meeting at which they provide food and spend their time doing PI training sessions. They are now only holding three of these a year, yet haven’t renamed the event.
Regional Activities: The regional activities committee puts on 3 major events per year. The NA Birthday, New Years Eve and the Regional Campout. They also help with the H&I Learning Day and the Regional Assembly Workshop as well as the new Young Peoples Unity Day. They help out the 20 areas with their events by providing a calendar so that the areas can have regional dates so that no area event conflicts with another areas regional event. They post all areas events whether they are a regional or area event on the regional web site.
Phone lines (PL): Phone lines are currently operating a 24 hours a day, 7 days a week 1-800-Today NA number with live addicts answering the phones. They are able to do this by having Area help lines man individual days. The Spanish speaking area is helping the region man the Spanish speaking hotline, 1-800-NAAHORA.
Website : This committee is no longer meeting at the RSO, instead they have started having their meetings on Skype. The website committee is still hosting the WSZF website on our server. To contact them for updating or adding content to the site simply e-mail them at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Literature: We currently have no Literature Review committee because of lack of participation.
Regional Convention: The Convention committee has begun getting ready for this years convention and it will be Thanksgiving weekend at the Ontario Doubletree.
Cruise Committee: The Cruise Committee will be going to Alaska next year from August 26th to September 2nd 2012. I brought flyers for this event with me for anyone interested.
Youth Committee: They are experiencing a little trouble getting enough support to handle all the liaison positions for subcommittee positions. They are still working on getting Youth Committee Reps from each Area. They are currently unable to send a representative to all of the Regional subcommittees.
Sponsorship Behind The Walls: This committee is very busy with requests from inmates who wish to find recovery. Most of the inmates are from California but they also have 2 from Alabama, 1 from Tennessee, 1 from Virginia, 1 from North Carolina, 1 from Arizona, 1 from Florida, and 1 from Texas. They currently have approximately 108 sponsees and only 36 sponsors.
Pacific Cascade Region report to WSZF 2-04-11
Greetings from the Pacific Cascade Region, We are pleased to be here in Albuquerque with you all. I haven't attended the WSZF as a delegate since 1993 so it will be interesting to see how things have changed.
A little information about the Pacific cascade Region. Oregon covers 96,386 square miles making it the 9th largest state in the US. Our region serves approximately two thirds of that land mass with 14 areas including on area in Northern California. The Eastern third of the state is served by either WNIRNA or Southern Idaho and only in a few population centers. We currently have 14 Areas that hold a total of 508 daily meetings. We also have one institutional group, The Hole in the Wall Group, which meets at the Oregon State Penitentiary. This group has been consistently holding meetings behind the walls for over 23 years.
Our region meets quarterly and moves to a new hosting area each quarter. We have three two day meetings and one single day meeting each year. Of the three two day events two are Regional Assembly meetings that are presented by the delegate team and one is a Learning day put on by the regional PR and H&I committees.
We have a typically annual convention that is bid out to hosting areas as well as participate in the PNWNA convention that also moves to bidding regions in the Pacific Northwest. In 2010 PCRNA hosted the PNW convention in Portland. It appears to have been a great success. We await the final reconciliation of the event. We held a workshop at the PNW and were the first group to fill out the literature survey. We had about 80 members there for an overview of world regional and area information.
We are also hosting WSLD this year in Bend OR October 28-30. We hope to see many of you there.
At the moment most regional positions are filled with the exception of Literature Chair and Archivist. We are in the process of a regional inventory that has taken a bit longer than anticipated to complete as well as an update of our Bylaws and Guidelines that is being worked on by an Ad Hoc.
In regards to the Service System project we sent a team of three members to the Baltimore workshop in October and had a very interesting weekend. I think we all came away with a better understanding of the work and since then we have held three workshops on this project. We were initially met with doom gloom and naysayers however at each workshop before we left the attitude had shifted to a very positive one. We have at least three areas that are implementing the GSU/LSU model already. We are planning on one additional workshop in the next month or so.
Michael McD RD and Lisa C ARD
Western States Zonal Forum Report
February 4, 2011
While our economy is still in the toilet in Las Vegas (oh, this sounds the same as last year’s report), our
fellowship is still seemingly able to survive. We just recently contributed just over $9000 to NA World
Services which was a big part of a donation from the CAN Area Convention.
We’ve been spending a lot of time during our regional meetings, workshops, area service, and home
groups discussing the treasurer handbook bulletins, the new money IP’s and concepts to inform local
addicts of the precarious situation that NAWS is in.
We held 3 service system workshops in early December and had a total of 71 members. We changed
up the format each workshop and by Day 3, we had it down. It was most helpful to start with the NAWS
Update because once the members understood the seriousness of our financial situation, it helped with
more of a solution based discussion. Most members tended to lean towards the two track system and
the statewide representation. They were concerned about adding more service positions and layers but
liked the idea of “workgroups.” However, they didn’t really understand how workgroups would be set
up as it is a new change of the way we are currently providing services through committees.
We will be having our Annual Regional Assembly in March and will be discussing the topics from
this weekend with an emphasis on the updated service system workgroup outcomes and trying to
implement environmental scanning in our region.
We currently have 235 meetings in our region with 6 areas being represented. New groups in small
towns outside of Las Vegas are starting to surface and we are very excited about that. Ira and I
just recently did an outreach presentation to a home group in Overton, Nevada which had been in
existence for 6 years that we didn’t even know about until 1 day they called NAWS and asked what they
should do about their “extra” NA funds. I was contacted by Colin at NAWS and followed up with the
representative. They showed up at ASC, we gave them a new group package and literature, got their
new group information on our website, helpline and their meeting will be included in the next printing
of our regional meeting schedule in March, 2011. Our geographical boundaries include Las Vegas and
surrounding areas to include Henderson, Pahrump, Overton, south to Laughlin- NV, Bullhead City- AZ,
Lake Havasu-AZ, Kingman- AZ and Needles, CA. We had an increase of 26 meetings from our reporting
of last year’s report to WSC.
Our region has budgeted the RD/RDA team to go to the Florida Service Symposium this year rather
than attending WSLD in March, 2011. We are always excited to learn new and better ways to carry the
message in our region.
Region 51 will be hosting the First Regional Convention on June 3-5, 2011 which will be held at the
Orleans Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. The theme is “What happens in Vegas…Recovery”. You
can register at www.region51na.org. Our original area, Southern Nevada has given up their “area”
convention that has been going on for the past 25 years in an attempt to become more unified in our
region. Future conventions will probably be held in April as to not conflict with so many other area and
regional conventions that are in close proximity to our region.
Other larger events coming up in the region are the 8 1/2th Annual Dopes on Slopes in Brian Head Utah
on March 11-13, 2011 and the California Arizona Nevada Area will be holding their annual convention on
July 15-17, 2011 in Laughlin, NV.
Our Spanish speaking member population has not grown and there are still only 2 groups that meet
every day. Our Regional PR committee has been printing posters and have changed the helpline to
make it easier for Spanish speaking people to call. We’ve been trying to get our area and regional
guidelines transferred into Spanish and that has been a very slow process. Any feedback or ideas to
accomplish this would be helpful.
Our Regional H&I committee has 22 commitments and all are being taken care of but it always seems to
be the same addicts as panel leaders bringing the meetings into the facilities.
Our Regional Activities committee puts on 4 activities a year and other areas and home groups have
many other events and activities. We are a social bunch!
Everything else is going pretty well in our region.
Grateful to Serve!
Regional Delegate Alternate
Rio Grande Region of NA
Report to the Western States Zonal Forum
February 4-6, 2011
The Rio Grande Region encompasses all of the state of New Mexico, as well as
Durango, CO and El Paso, TX. We have seven Areas that open 187 meetings per
week, eleven of which are in Spanish, or bilingual. Our active H&I area subcommittees
take 117 meetings per month into facilities throughout the region. Our region
meets bimonthly, rotating between three cities. Our region does not have standing
subcommittees, but RCMs volunteer as resource persons during their terms of office. We
have not found an effective strategy for all of these resource persons to consistently serve
the areas of our region, but we currently have a very effective H&I Regional Resource
person who is working with NM Corrections and communicating with the area H&I
The RSC is looking at additional ways to serve the areas in our region. Areas now have
the responsibility for their own phone lines, and one area does not have a phone line.
The region is looking at converting to a hosted PBX system that serves all the areas in
the region. Our current regional corporate body has a limited scope, which covers the
responsibility and accountability for putting on our annual regional convention. We
are researching a reorganization of the corporate body, and expanding its role to be
more involved in the convention planning process. Effective communications remain
a challenge, and we are exploring possibilities for using the regional email bank for
blasting messages many members at once.
Our region is funded primarily by proceeds from our annual regional convention. We
have a Regional Convention Corporation that is responsible for our regional convention
each year in March, which moves around the region. Our region purchases event
insurance for the convention, but does not carry insurance for any other events or
meetings. Protecting individual members’ liability is a recurring conversation that arises
when, in particular, the Greater Albuquerque Area is planning an event that may merit
or require insurance. Also, since none of our areas are legal entities, none file or pay
taxes on goods sold, such as literature, or have the ability to sign contracts or purchase
insurance. The conversations around these issues continue without any current plans to
The Greater Albuquerque Area, the largest area in our region, has seen a large growth
in the number of young people finding NA. There is a thriving young people’s meeting
called The Young and the Dopeless.
We have a regional website at www.riograndena.org that provides information about
meetings and activities, area and subcommittee guidelines. There are email links for
H&I, PR and general information, links to online registration for our regional convention
and links to the World Services website for the NA Way, NAWS News, The Basic Text,
and general information about NA.
Freddy and I will be doing a Service System workshop at our Rio Grande Regional
Convention which will be in Taos, March 17-20, 2011.
Fellowship Services Team:
The most exciting thing to report on behalf of the Northern California Regional Service Committee is that we finally adopted the Fellowship Services Team External Guidelines at our October 2010 meeting. The process of transitioning Regional Services to a process/plan driven and flexible structure began in 2007, and adoption of these guidelines that will transition our current Administrative Committee into a more service-focused team was one of the final hurdles for us. We had already approved the FST Mission Statement and FST Work Group Charter, but the devil always lies in the
details and the RSC spent the better part of a year conducting an exhaustive line-by-line review, and debate, on every aspect of the guidelines before they were finally overwhelmingly ratified. We are planning on forming a working group that will help us complete the transition to the FST model within the coming year. We will provide all of you with the External Guidelines, Work Group Charter, and related documents, including a “Team Start-Up” exercise the administrative Committee took last year as part of a new culture of teambuilding. As part of moving toward a plan-driven system, the NCRSC has adopted an “Action Plan” for the 2010-2011 year. This is only the second cycle wherein we’ve adopted a plan-based approach, so we are still learning. There is room for improvement, as the current and previous plans were not really collaborative. They were composed by the Admin team and subsequently ratified by the RSC. They did not include much in the way of environmental scanning, but were instead based on current economic realities and the need to slim down and prioritize the services we are providing in light of diminished financial resources.
CDCR Fire Camps and Public Relations:
Our biggest success story in terms of moving to a project-based system has to be our H&I Fire Camps workgroup. As far back as 2005, the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation had asked us to bring H&I panels into these remote fire camps that are populated with non-violent drug offenders. Under our old system, our Regional H&I Subcommittee discussed, discussed, and continued to discuss addressing this need, but never seemed to gain any momentum. We are now two years into our project-based model, and the NCRSC has twice affirmed the Fire Camps Work Group, which answers directly to the FST, as the number one priority of regional services. We have a small, talented work group composed of our H&I Coordinators & two pool members. They are assisted by one of our PR Coordinators as well as a small army of fellowship volunteers. Today, we are successfully serving several facilities in Northern California. We will distribute a map of the camps we are currently serving.
As one of the necessary steps to get camp clearances fast-tracked, our Fire Camps Work Group Leader and one of our PR Coordinators held a face-to-face meeting with a high-ranking CDCR official. As a result of that contact, the CDCR has reopened another exciting avenue for us; the CDCR 12 Step Advisory Committee. We are now participating again, along with Guy W from NAWS, in the 12 Step Advisory panel (now called the Volunteer Advisory Task Force). We are scheduled in the next quarter give a presentation to the task force about our fire camp efforts. Despite a recent glitch with the state over the renewal of some clearances that created a couple of blackouts for a short period of time, we are beginning to develop a very good, proactive relationship. The other exciting news on the H&I/PR front is that we have combined the two separate H&I and PR forums into a single gathering. This has been a huge success as we’re finding area PI and H&I chairs are working more closely together and coordinating services that may have traditionally fell “between the I’s” of H&I and PI. Last year we presented the NAWS Environmental Scan to the combined forum, and they broke into small groups to brainstorm innovative ways to reach the two populations identified in the Scan as the fastest growing addict populations in the US; the 18-25 year old group and older/retired persons who are abusing prescription medications. The forum continues to identify and try new approaches to reach these populations, with areas reporting back regularly on new initiatives they have tried. We now routinely have “between the I’s” discussions at our forum and respond wherever we can to requests from the community.
NA 101, our regional version of World Wide Workshops, continues to be a very popular service with the fellowship. This past November, we held an NA 101 in one of our rural northern areas, Mendocino County, with about 100 persons in attendance. The turn-out from the local fellowship was remarkable, and it was exciting to see our RCMs from around the region engaged in small group discussions and breaking bread with members from a fairly rural and isolated NA community. Unfortunately, the decline in area contributions to the RSC have forced us to postpone holding our planned second NA 101 event for the year, which we hoped to take to the areas in the far southern coastal part of our region (Santa Cruz/Monterrey).
Regional Nominations Panel:
In the winter of 2009, we formed our second Regional Nominations Panel to help identify potential nominees to fill RSC, NCCNA, and RSO positions for election in spring 2010. This panel was very successful, and seemed to escape the negativity and resistance that derailed our first effort. As a result, this year we filled the entire Administrative Body, Convention Committee, and most seats on our RSO Board. This year, we’re a little behind schedule in the formation of our RNP, but we remain hopeful we will continue to build on last year’s success, even with a slightly tighter time-frame.
Northern California Convention:
The XXXII Northern California Convention, held in April of 2010 in Santa Clara, was financially successful, netting $59,259.44. However, the convention committee continues to need to increase its operating reserves, as costs for main meeting halls, labor and facility accommodations for over 7,000 members continue to rise. As a result, $27K was retained to increase the convention operating reserve. NCCNA had attempted to raise the issue with the RSC this year that our convention costs continue to escalate to accommodate over 7,000 members, while at the same time, only about 3,400, on average, are actually registering for the Regional Convention. It is anticipated that future regional conventions will need to require our members to be registered to access the main meetings. As you can imagine, initial efforts to have that conversation with the fellowship have not been universally well received. Therefore, we are taking small steps toward more aggressive registration policies this year, and some of us are hopeful that WCNA San Diego will help set a precedent that our membership can learn to live with. NCCNA XXIII will be April 21-24 in Sacramento California, and we’d love for you all to join us, provided that you register☺ You can do so online at: http://www.norcalna.org
Regional Service Office:
The Northern California Regional Service Office had a difficult time during their 2009-10 fiscal year, ending with expenses over income in the amount of $33,041.55. This is a reflection of an 18% decline in literature sales, and a 20% decline in overall sales since the previous year. As a result, the NCRSC needed to subsidize the NCRSO with $10,000 of the remaining NCCNA proceeds in order to help them get through the current fiscal year in the black. The Board has looked at the NAWS Emergency Action Plan and adopted a similar plan should revenue continue to fall short. In addition, the board has cut out all non-essential expenses to help manage the economic downturn. The board has made valiant efforts at reducing these expenses, and are, as of now, projecting to end the year in the black. However, should the economy continue to be slow to recover, we may need to look at more drastic measures, including a reduction in personnel as employment expenses for two staff accounted for $97,527.18 in the previous fiscal year. We will be distributing the 2009-10 NCRSO annual report, which includes the financials of the RSC and NCCNA, to each of you.
In addition to the financial challenges of increased facilities costs combined with stagnant registration numbers experienced by NCCNA, and the 20% drop in sales experienced by the RSO, the NCRSC has found ourselves severely challenged by decreasing area contributions. Several times this year, we have run below our minimum operating reserve, and we came severely close to being overdrawn in December 2010. The RSC, after enjoying a long run as one of the largest financial contributors to NA world Services, only managed to contribute $6,694.38 to NAWS last fiscal year. We’re only on slightly better footing so far this year, having contributed $9,309.10 in the first two quarters ending December 31, 2010.
20 years of WSZF:
The very first meeting of what was preliminarily called the “West Coast Caucus” was held in Reno, NV during the weekend of December 7-8, 1991. Last year in San Diego was actually our 20th WSZF meeting, and maybe it’s good that went unacknowledged so we didn’t end up printing t-shirts As a bi-product of my moving this past year, I had opportunity to find and scan some personal archives. I will be presenting each of you with the files and notes we’d taken at our first five WSF meetings, including our original hand-written purpose crafted at that first meeting in Reno. As we go through the weekends agenda, and inevitably partake in our seemingly perennial discussions of “what exactly are we doing here?”, we can also reflect upon how much the fellowship, and we, have grown in the last two decades.
Thanks for all you do in service,
Matt S - Northern CA Regional Delegate
Traci P - Northern CA Alternate Delegate
Washington Northern Idaho Region
We have 20 Areas consisting of approximately 800 meetings spanning over 74,000
square miles that include Washington State, North Idaho, and a bit of North Eastern
We present 4 RD workshops at 2 of our Annual Conventions; this year we have done 4
Service Structure workshops around the region, and have 3 more workshops scheduled.
Our region’s feedback to the proposals have run the full spectrum from being adamantly
opposed to them to beginning to see the possibilities. Julia has presented 3 Living Clean
workshops and sent our regions feedback to the work group. We have been gathering
feedback on the Literature Survey and sending it to world services.
Our combined RSC and Regional Subcommittees have been a great success.
Participation at RSC and the subcommittees remains steady and it is nice to see our
fellowship get fired up for service. We have implemented several of our regional goals,
and are thinking about reprioritizing our goals or perhaps doing a new inventory process
as it has been several years now.
Our RD team continues to utilize a quarterly report to the region that summarizes NAWS
News, NA Way Magazine, World Board reports, and Western States Zonal Forum. The
goal is to increase communication throughout the levels of service reaching the individual
group member. We continue to work to that end with much hope.
We have had about a third of our areas move forward with implementing the Public
Relations handbook, and started a PR committee. We are actively exploring the
possibility of having a regional PR committee and if anyone has implemented regional
PR we would like to hear how it is working and see your guidelines.
Our Convention and Events Committee has revamped the host committee guidelines for
the four conventions they support. We have an adhoc committee looking at increasing
seed money with the ultimate goal being to decrease fund raising for conventions. Our
fellowship has been overwhelmed with fundraising and we are looking at alternatives.
Our Region has also been very excited to hear about the plans of the Southern California
cruise committee to have an Alaskan cruise departing from Seattle in Aug of 2012.
Dan Friesen, RD email@example.com
Julia Reed-Voldal, RDA firstname.lastname@example.org
February 4, 2011
Dear fellow Regional Trusted Servants and participants,
The California Mid-State Region of NA is made up of seven Areas and has begun its annual census of meetings for the purpose of renewing our Regional insurance. It looks like we are going to find over 400 weekly meetings carrying the message in California Mid-State.
We have had insurance coverage for several years now through the Philadelphia Company, and this business relationship has provided us a better insurance package for our Home Groups. Thanks again to the member regions of our Zone for supporting us by providing contact information about your insurance programs. The idea of exploring the possibility of forming some kind of cooperative insurance purchasing program is still alive in our Region. Maybe someday we can consider this idea as part of a planning process.
The Service System Project is a lively topic in our Region. A number of our members attended the workshop in Oakland, California. In addition, all the administrative members of our RSC attended. Some of our members have read the published material and are full of questions. The Delegate team (Robin and I) have provided a major briefing to our RSC plus four briefings to ASCs and put on four workshops throughout our Region.
Registration and our recent Regional Convention held in June of 2010 in Stockton California was usually low. The number of attendees was normal (about 1,500, with 1,000 paid registrations), but we only 600 plus paid registrations.
The next California Mid-State Regional convention of NA will be held June 8
- 10, 2012 in Fresno, California. Early bird registration is available, and
speaker submissions are being accepted. Your members can get more information
Robin Perkins, Regional Alternate Delegate
Per Doug C.: The California Midstate Region successfully obtained state and federal (IRS) recognition as a non-profit. The region did not “incorporate” but was, instead, recognized under the state’s civil code. The region undertook a seven-year project to obtain the recognition. (Doug agreed to supply documents outlining “how we did it” to anyone interested in seeing them.) All documents are signed by the Unincorporated Association’s Regional Chair, who is recognized as a “volunteer.” An accountant “watches out for” the chair, who does, however, have some liability.
Wish I could attend in person, but I am hoping our skype experience gives our region something that we
would not have gotten in the past.
Recovery is hanging on in the Alaska Region. We have four areas, with approximately 45 groups and
55 meetings per week. Not all groups are represented by areas. Our donations to World per their last
report was down from the previous year by about 6.0%, and totals $1,161.
At our last regional meeting(Feb 2011) we adopted a several resolutions to materially change the way
our region does business.
1. We will now forward 10% of our convention net profit to world.
2. We have formally adopted a budget process and timetable.
3. Newly adopted section on election of officers
4. Final approval for the upcoming area assembly.
We have one regional convention in October each year, and this year is in Kenai.
Our webpage is
A milestone is our first translation project.
IP#1 Who, What, How, & Why in Yup'ik
After the WSC we went to the Southwest Area to do a Learning day the first
weekend in June at the Mission shelter. We created a Power Point for NA101
workshop along with workshops on H&I, Building strong home groups, Public
Relations, workshop and I for Living Clean the Journey Continues.
In June we held elections all positions were filled accepted Public Relations. The
chair did not know he had to run for elections again. We lost our new Chair Steve
H. to cancer. So at the September meeting we had a lot of people changing positions
as I did when Vince G. stepped down after serving 6 years as RDA and RD. The body
changed the way the RD team is elected. Every 2 years the body elects the RDA and
the old RDA then moves to the RD spot. Jim B has joined the RD team.
We lost the Lake Havasu area they only had three home groups and two of them
stopped meeting. The Lake Havasu home group joined the CAN Area. The Peaks
area is holding on after the lost of Steve H. and Randy B. moved to Prescott with his
new wife. We will be going up to help the PEAKS area anyway we can.
The PR team has been working with a group to help returning vets and their
families who may have addiction problem. Also they have been working with the
Phoenix, East and West Valley areas on getting information into hospitals to allow
12 step calls at the facilities. They are working with the help line to make sure that
we can do this before they do the test hospital (Good thinking).
The Webmaster is trying to form a standing subcommittee without PR over site.
The sponsor behind the walls has been going great along with support for prisons
that are not served by a area or the area cannot help with lit. Our smaller areas
are taxing the region with request for basic text, works how and why and Just for Today’s.
Been working with them to get the NAWS meeting list up to date. The office has
been a great help with providing a spreadsheet. They are having trouble getting
the concept of lets get ride of the old meeting that we know of, then go on to get the
contract information updated.
5 regional workshops 1 area created a lit review group.
San Diego / Imperial Communities Region
2011 Report to the Western Zonal Forum
Greetings from sunny San Diego where we represent 9 areas and maintain over 600 meetings per week.
Activities: Has always put on the annual New Year’s Eve dance, the Mother’s Day Spiritual Retreat in Julian, and last year added an annual Desert Campout great for the RV enthusiasts. It started as a joint campout co-sponsored by two areas and became so successful it grew to a Regional activity.
Convention Committee: Has decided to hold a convention this year, despite the World Convention being held in San Diego this year. Their Convention will be Memorial Day weekend at the Town & Country Hotel Convention Center. After another review, the policy of the Convention Committee remains to allow anyone entrance to all meetings (including the main meeting) without requiring registration, unless the location book will not accommodate all attendees for the main meeting, or the cost of putting on the event changes enough to warrant such.
PR Efforts: We are still operating under individual sub committees, yet slowly incorporating some of the ideas of the PR Handbook as time goes on.
Behind The Walls: remains a strong presence in the local as well as some non-local facilities. Last month alone they replied to 37 new letters from inmates seeking sponsorship and guidance in working the 12 steps of NA.
H&I: efforts remain strong as the areas are coming together to support meetings at over 52 facilities. We do continue to struggle with unity in that some Areas do not have H&I Chairs to coordinate their panels which find them running without direction and/or sometimes training.
PI: Has remained a strong presence in the public eye from the annual Del Mar Fair, to Farmer’s Markets, the local PACT meetings for recently released paroles, medical conferences, etc. We have eleven TV stations contacted, of which ten have agreed to air our approved PSA on DVD. We have recently finished a Spanish PSA as well at the end of last year.
RSO News; the RSO last year moved all of our checking accounts to another bank. Being that each signor had to re-sign, it took months to accomplish, then once our statements arrived, we found quite a bit in “fine print” charges which was one of our main reasons for changing banks. We are again looking into banks and now, our old bank seems to be interested in providing us a better offer for consideration along with the rest. Our insurance currently covers all meetings and events held in our region. We seem to have an abundance of Spanish 5th Edition Basic text which we are selling for $3.50 to eliminate stock before we release of the new 6th Edition Spanish Basic Text.
Phonelines: we have regional as well as two areas co-hosting a hotline together. Region has just purchased a computer based phoneline to facilitate the service when we aren’t physically at the RSO. We still have an “addict to addict” on the phoneline 8 am to 10 pm at our Regional Service Office.
Regional Outreach: Has been represented at multiple Area meetings encouraging representation to the local Regional outreach and continues to take “Addicts on Asphalt” crews to meetings needing a boost throughout the Region.
RSC: Received another boost of funds this year from the Convention Committee which is not standard practice in our Region. The funds enabled the Region to recover from dropping below prudent reserve towards the end of the year. Youth Committee is very supportive in participating with other committees as well as sponsoring their own events. They are looking into creating their own meeting list for youth.
Website: Has supported the Convention in creating on-line registration. They provide a calendar of upcoming events including links to actual flyers. This site also offers Area sites to operate interdependently. New this year we added the RD Corner to our website to hopefully make it easier for the Regional members to find updates on world issues and how our Region is interacting and/ or responding to them or where we need response with direct links to such.
New Literature. We have no Regional Lit Review at this time.
Nila and I put on a post-CAR assembly including a lot of interactive IDT topics covered this year. We put on (3) Service System workshops with good attendance, but which had limited input. We will plan to put on more SS workshops throughout this coming year
In loving service, Nila and Pam
*(Recorder’s Note) I was unable to find a written report from Oscar/California Inland in any of the materials I was given. However, according to my notes:
-- Without a convention, the California Inland Region of Narcotics Anonymous “simply does not exist.”
-- The region has held one, sparsely-attended service system workshop for six areas. There was “very little interest in changing anything.”
-- NA has received several requests to make presentations in schools in the region.
Bid packages for 2012 WSZF (no formal bids yet;) Mission statement
Social networking … Trouble with Traditions/anonymity in some regions, even as far as “out of hand” in Arizona; one question raised about the possibility of a service pamphlet; brief discussion on the social networking workshop held at the Western States Learning Days event; Matt S. agrees to share a few pieces he wrote on the subject for his area newsletter.
NAWS Update, Ron H.
*see Ron’s report for full details and numbers. Per my notes:
-- Number of meetings worldwide appear to be up – primarily outside the U.S.; NAWS and local records, however, are not matching
-- Money: NAWS is hurting and cutting. Examples include: No staff at WSZF , which is “saying a lot.” NAWS continues to believe that “travel and fellowship development are important, although not a return on an investment.” NAWS has reduced expenses, attendance at events, attendance at professional events, translation projects, the free annual literature donation from $700k to $400k. NAWS has changed the NA Way subscription process and created a donation portal on na.org. (Donations through the portal are “up anecdotally.” Discussion at the WSZF included an item about donating to NAWS through the portal as a gift for friends’/sponsees’/etc. clean time anniversaries.) Ron answered a question about “voluntary layoffs” at NAWS by saying there has been some attrition (i.e., some folks have left and not been replaced) and that NAWS is “on the cusp of layoffs. If we have to cut any deeper, that’s where we’ll cut, but we’re not there yet.” The March NAWS board meeting was cancelled as a cost-saving measure. Finally, Literature sales continue to account for a vast majority of NAWS’s income – to the tune of 90 percent, versus 10 percent from contributions.
-- WCNA 34: Discussion about whether it was NA or the convention location in San Diego that imposed the participant ceiling/registration requirement of 16,000. Ron agreed to carry back to the board that having members call the convention location and get different information than had previously been given by the board “undermines” the board’s credibility. (The convention location, per Ron, is imposing the must-have-a-badge rule due to Homeland Security concerns.) The cap was set, according to Ron, because “We don’t want to set ourselves up to lose money on another world convention. We just can’t do that.” Plans for WCNA 35 in Philadelphia also are likely to include a registration requirement, although East Coast conventions typically see better registration/attendance ratios.
-- Literature: NAWS has made a “philosophical shift to sell more merchandise (such as medallions, medallion holders, heat-sensitive mugs) in light of the economic slam.”
NAWS News: There has been some delay in getting NAWS News out promptly after meetings, and the document may not have gone out at all after the July meeting. Staff reductions and a sick primary writer may be factors, but Ron said that “to miss one is a big deal” and agreed to speak to the board about the matter.
Presence of the WSZ at the 2012 WSC: Lively discussion about whether the WSZ needs to meet at the Conference. Suggestions included not meeting at all and meeting in the room only, as opposed to over dinner. (A short aside included a question about whether it would save money for the WSB to put on a web-based presentation for the CAT, rather than providing a “presence for every zone that wants a CAT presentation. Ron said the Web idea is not out of the question and agreed to take the idea back.) Further discussion about the WSZ’s presence at the 2012 WSC eventually led to a decision to make a recommendation to NAWS (likely through NAWS News.) The WSZF agreed on the following:
A recommendation from the WSZF to the WB to not have zonal forum reports presented verbally at the WSC, to instead have zones provide written reports only, and to eliminate the zonal report session eliminated from the WSC agenda.
5 Feb. 2011
NA struggles to talk about money. That issue, combined with a culture of “the way we’ve always done it” has made getting areas and regions – and to a lesser extent, groups – on board with the 50-25-25 split difficult. Some WSZF delegates’ groups have implemented the new recommended split. Workshopping the topic has been difficult. The breakdown of NAWS’ income (90 percent lit., 10 percent donations) is “absolutely shocking” to many members. The new IPs don’t seem to be widely disseminated. Suggestions on the “how” part of this discussion included starting it in the sponsor/sponsee relationship; donations through the portal at na.org; opening workshops or ASC-level discussions with “this is a topic we don’t like to talk about;” “tying this issue to the heart” and to NA’s primary purpose through anecdotal stories about fellowship development, translation efforts, etc.; and tying the discussion to NA’s vision.
Many areas have bottlenecks because of prudent reserves. Regions also have bottlenecks. Lengthy discussion about “rainy day” versus “operational funds” types of prudent reserves. The forum mostly agreed that the latter is a better way to let funds flow and, in the end, fund local services. In some instances, RCMs simply forget to bring money to region. (Suggested fix: be more circumspect about who we put in these positions.) Another suggestion was “let the groups decide” how they want to split their donations. Most delegates seemed to think workshops have thus far been ineffective in moving the NA and money conversation forward.
The delegates voiced concern over knowing what the board’s needs are. The World Board, per Ron, is studying the disconnect between what the board needs and who’s getting elected, i.e. “a profile of needs.” The election process also is confusing for many. As it stands, all votes are either for or against every person on the ballot. Diversity for diversity’s sake was a concern. What’s the right balance between institutional knowledge, business experience, NA service experience? There was some support for a board slate; others weren’t so sure. (One suggestion went so far as to eliminate the HRP process altogether and put forward a nominating process by the board.) Falsely/overly humble resumes were a concern. As far as the video-presentation-for-candidates idea went, most were against it, saying all it measures is how well someone does on camera. To foster trust and meet the board’s needs, there was broad consensus at the WSZF that there needs to be crystal clear education on the voting/nominating process and the board’s current needs. This would help to ease the “us vs. them” mentality that festers.
Housekeeping: Matt and Ken will be admins on the Yahoo group
The Service System:
Two-track versus linear systems debated. The idea behind the GSU model is to ensure that groups get what they need, not to ask them how, and to have a system that’s based on the concepts, per Matt. In particular, the proposed new service system asks that the principle of delegation be practiced. Question arose about where groups will get their literature. That’s still TBD, per Ron H. Another question arose about whether groups could opt out of the GSU but still have a voice at the LSU. The answer is yes. Still more questions arose about how the new system would jive with the 8th and 9th Traditions. The idea is to have the service culture we have now, just oversee it differently. However, per Michael, the GSU model gives NA the opportunity to mentor people into service and to get oldtimers back involved. Concerns arose around the new model asking more people to be of service when we already are short on willing participants and that the new system could “exacerbate existing problems.”
“Still the least understood” aspect of the proposed new system. Lots of concern about accountability, clear statements of purpose and whether this will simply amount to a shared services committee. Another concern about how this whole model fits into the “classic inverted pyramid” of the NA service structure. Matt mentions that the proposed changes to the system will force NA to look at some long-held beliefs, challenge the notion of autonomy, in particular as it relates to the 4th Tradition. Lengthy discussion about whether some states would be broken up at the intermediate body level. Population-based breakdowns have been considered. (Baltimore is mentioned, with the caveat that Free State is “100 percent against this project.”) Seating at the conference is mentioned as a concern, i.e. that “some of the magic will be lost” if a person from a given local/regional fellowship isn’t on the conference floor. Zonal representation is a possibility. The board’s plan is to go to the conference with individual CAR-ish motions asking for agreements in principle where seating is concerned. If the conference says no, it’s “back to the drawing board.” Some discussion about whether the size of the conference is unmanageable now or could become so. Doug mentions that his preference is to have more voices at the conference rather than fewer, and he doesn’t see how changing the way the fellowship is represented solves the identified problems. Ron’s reply is that there is no ongoing conversation about downsizing the conference, at least not significantly and certainly not permanently. Michael makes an argument for “the bigger the conference gets, the more of a monster it becomes. “We need to find a way to step away and make this thing more effective. We were supposed to downsize, but the U.S. regions wouldn’t let go. Everybody acknowledges there’s a problem; we must do something about it.” Finally, Robert asks: “What do I tell them we’re making better?” Response from Matt that the problems are: apathy, lack of involvement, lack of training/mentorship ; the proposal is really about infusing local services with creativity, planning, training and more effective service delivery.
A long day left only a short time for Ron to make a brief presentation on the concept of environmental scanning and provide a few examples before the forum broke for the day.
6 Feb. 2011
The forum agreed to give gift editions of that Ron brought from NAWS “It Works How and Why” to Jim W. and Jeff P. Ken and Deb from SoCal had an early flight.
In the Parking Lot: CAR Motions; USSC; Purpose Statement; Bids
Why is the World Board seemingly against all motions in the CAR? The board’s take is that “projects are the hard-core business of the conference.” (Ron gave the example of a Traditions Working Guide, saying the board wasn’t against the project; it was just against a CAR motion on it.) The board would like to see the CAR as more of an “idea mill” that would lend weight to those ideas. Questions about the potential shift included whether it would be a way to get ideas into the project pipeline. The answer: yes, this is an effort to make a better partnership between the board and the regions and to get a feel for what the fellowship really wants. Also, how is policy changed? Will that remain policy-driven? What level of consensus would policy change require? (from Freddy) Policy will still be made by a WB motion in the CAR, per Ron. “We are going down a path where the WB makes motions; the regions don’t. That’s the hardest sell.” The course correction mechanism is to remove or add board members via a simple majority. Regions would still have the right to bring ideas to the conference, but it would have to have substantial support from the delegates. In terms of new business, straw polling would become the norm. Michael: “Only ideas with the support of the conference would go back to the fellowship.” Concerns include an argument, from Jim, that the rights of the minority get overridden in consensus-based decision making and that there is no mechanism for direct access to group-level conscience in the proposal. Ron’s response is that a group-driven CAR is a myth. In reality, per Ron, groups are trusting servants through delegation. As far as consensus-based making decision in general, Julia: “If you’re asking the fellowship to take a leap of faith, the board should do the same.” That concern was echoed by Doug, who voiced a “profound concern that this (changing the CAR motion process) could be disastrous: that there is going to be an increasingly concentrated ability to make decisions.” Ron reminded the forum that the last WSC “agreed unanimously to the process we’re about to try.” Ron agreed to take to heart a suggestion from Dan that an explanation of the new process be placed in the CAR for the purposes of the fellowship understanding what’s about to happen. The CAR, per Matt, is a “tyranny of the minority.”
Pacific Cascade is interested in hosting the 2012 WSZF and making it a CAR/CAT focused event. There was broad support for a “WSZF Road Show” for off-conference years that may go to Sierra Sage in 2013 (with financial support from other regions) and will provide some fellowship development. Michael agreed to be the point person for a possible visit to Sierra Sage in 2013. Financial support may also be offered in the future to bring the Alaska delegate to the WSZF. Pacific Cascade agreed to look to see when the CAT will be out and send in a bid before April 6. Freddy agreed to facilitate via email once bids come in.
Consensus seemed to be that it’s premature to change the purpose statement. However, per Matt: We’ve been vigilant in answering who we are and what we are doing … The current statement isn’t accurate … More will be revealed.” Freddy: “We need to delete ‘on the floor’ and replace it with ‘written.’”
There was some hope that this discussion would die a quiet death. Most at the forum liked the NAWS response, which Freddy forwarded to the Yahoo group. Michael mentioned that this is the kind of thing that has a tendency to fester. “All of a sudden, this becomes a ‘chance for the good old days.’’
This was Dan’s last zonal forum; also Ken’s. It was Tracy’s first WSZF. The delegates were polled on their regions’ election cycles.
In Loving Service,