ATHENA ~ DISCOVERY DIVISION CHAIR

I think there can be different styles for the coordinators, though each can fulfill the same responsibilities. I'm a member of several loops and in some the coordinators are very consciously active and in others they are almost seamless parts of it. Some loops are extremely quiet while others I can hardly keep up with reading all the messages. When conversation is constant the coordinators probably see less need to introduce topics or to work at increasing shares. I think seeing that people are greeted on joining and on leaving with personalized letters is really important. In a recent situation, for example, someone emailed me back and said their computer had been down and they had wanted to rejoin and so were very glad to get the 12th Step Within letter I'd just emailed them.

I think welcoming people to the loop touches many of these newcomers' hearts, based on the responses I have read. Their responses often spark other comments and so the flow continues. In some loops I'm part of we post daily gratitude lists or what we will do or did do for exercise, or commit to our abstinence and to what makes it possible. These can be very meaningful both for those making the commitments and for those who may not do so but are moved by something in the person's share and will share something themselves. I think coordinators can encourage such commitment sharing when appropriate for their loop. I think it's important to know one's loop, to sense from the sharing what might be timely topics for example.

Some loops can come to new life after a long period of silence. Coordinators have been part of this renaissance in some loops within Discovery Division, for example. Why other loops don't get off the ground or only do so very sporadically can also remain a mystery. Perhaps they need to be put on more search engines, more often. Or the right timing may not have arrived for them to get up and running and more tools and service may be needed to turn the key of more active participation.

I certainly agree that the role of coordinator is a very important one and that service over time in that role increases the effectiveness of the service. I'm glad that there is training and assistance for fledgling coordinators. Many giving service are not computer literate even after years with computers, such as myself. Or they are not going to be aware of all the things needed for a functional, vital loop. I think the willingness to help one another that I see in this Recovery Group is a huge asset. These loops are incredibly life-giving and nurturing. It is a real joy to be part of them. Not only do they contribute greatly to the quality and maintenance of my recovery, but they also provide that same opportunity for untold numbers of others. I hope our numbers will only continue to grow; what a need exists for these loops in the "outside world!" Well-trained coordinators are an essential part of the experience, strength, and hope we can offer to those still suffering outside the rooms.

~ Athena






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