On November 12, 2022, seventy-five ACA delegates from around the world met in a historic meeting on Zoom. They discussed the Seventh Tradition and heard updates on studies about a possible name change for ACA. Most importantly, these delegates made a new commitment to being a part of ACA’s future.
The gathering was the first-ever Quarterly Delegate Meeting, a four-hour session in which delegates representing meetings, intergroups and regions discussed emerging strategic issues that will affect adult children around the world.
In previous years, ACA had only one Annual Business Conference, held two days every spring. This Conference has a special role in ACA decision-making. According to ACA’s Twelve Concepts for World Service, the delegates are the “voice” of the fellowship. On major decisions of policy and finance, they speak for you and all adult children.
This year, it was recognized that two days each year wasn’t enough to play this important role. The Conference scheduled a third meeting day in July, to finish annual business, and they also agreed to commence quarterly meetings in July, November, and February, lasting up to four hours. Discussions are conducted using a group conscience process.
As a member of the ACA World Service Organization (WSO) Board of Trustees, I want to say how exciting and important these changes are. Hearing the opinions of delegates provides assurance that decisions by ACA World Service reflect the thinking and needs of the broader fellowship.
The Quarterly Delegate Meetings are especially important because delegates who meet regularly can make knowledgeable, informed decisions. They are prepared and able to be the voice of the fellowship.
To take just a few examples in the past year, the Conference in May required WSO’s meeting directory to list “only” meetings—meetings that include only women, men, or members of marginalized groups who may have suffered societal trauma. They commissioned a study on whether ACA should change its name to specifically include “dysfunctional families.” They also heard and commented on reports about literature in development and WSO finances.
In a feedback session at our November 12th session, the quarterly meeting model received enthusiastic support from delegates. Many said the four-hour meeting length was much easier to accommodate, and that regular delegate meetings will help them keep their groups, intergroups, and regions better informed. The meetings also are a way for ACA members to meet fellow delegates from many countries, languages, and cultural backgrounds.
The Annual Business Conference and Quarterly Delegate Meetings are open to all registered ACA groups, intergroups, and regions. If you wish to help serve the fellowship, please work with your group to register as a delegate. More information is available at www.acaworldconvention.org.