Chair’s Report – CER June 2020 Assembly

Dear Fellows,

The times in which we currently find ourselves are unprecedented.
`Business as usual ́ is out; we have been challenged since our March Assembly in Budapest to respond swiftly, appropriately and adequetly to changes forced upon us by the respective national responses to the Corona Virus.

Thanks to the titanic efforts of trusted servants at Group, Intergroup and Region, on-line platforms were quickly up and running to replace face-to-face meetings, now prohibited in most European jurisdictions. In addition, daily updates were published to inform our fellows as to when, where and how these meetings could be joined. after initial problems with Zoom-bombers, security measures were established to protect oir meeting spaces.

I want to thank everybody concerned for the concerted, on-going effort which demonstrates, once again, that we are willing to go to any lengths to carry the message. It is easy to underestimate the amount of work and passion that has been invested to ensure the continuity of regular meetings.

In response to this extraordinary situation the Steering Committee has met more than monthly since our last Assembly. Our newly-elected Secretary has been getting to know the ropes with the kind assistance of her teammates. In this process, I have recognised the need for even closer collaboration between the Secretary, RECLO and ArenA Editor as the core of a Communications Team. I will work with our Officers to this end.

We have been tracking our financials on a monthly basis, as promised, and feel we are in doing well under the new circumstances. What we must recognise is that realistic projections on future contributions have become even more difficult as we observe the new patterns of the on-line flow of 7th Tradition funds.

As the 2020 Conference has been postponed from April to October, the Delegates are utilising the opportunity to gather further input on the Conference Questions and raise awareness of the annual Conference cycle.

The inability to meet face-to-face has been challenging for many alcoholics. On the bright side, 90 meeting in 90 days has never been so feasible for people living in places where there may be only a hand full of meetings within driving distance. Also, we are discovering the benefits of being able to invite speakers from all around the world to our regular speaker meetings. With these and further benefits in mind, many Groups are considering future options in terms of hybrid meetings which would offer the best of both worlds.

Some Groups are facing the probability that their physical meeting spaces will be declared unfit for purpose with respect to new guidelines for public gatherings currently being introduced. So change is, and continues to be, the name of the game.

Change is not new to us. If we work in the spirit of the Steps, Traditions and Concepts, we will get through this current phase stronger and even more useful to those who need this programme.

Patrick L., CER Chair