6 | Tradition 8
"Every DRA group ought to be self-supporting."
|A core principle behind the
Seventh Tradition is remaining free of outside influences.
Certainly money is needed to fulfill our Primary Purpose, but
outside funds often come with strings attached. We must be ever
vigilant to remain free of such outside influences. It is best if
Groups can support themselves through the voluntary contributions of their
IN OUR OWN WORDS: Members
share their thoughts on the Seventh Tradition
is one of our goals. We aren't quite there yet. Half of our members
don't have jobs so it is tough for them to give every time the basket is
passed. What we do have plenty of is Fellowship and personal support for
each other. That's what really counts. I feel that as long as we can
keep the door open for ourselves and newcomers, we are doing fine.
Our Group had a big debate
recently on self-support. Some of us thought that getting free space for
our meetings was not being self-supporting and other's thought it was just
fine. We seemed to have a pretty even split on this issue so what we did
was to take a Group Conscience as to if this donated space would cause any
problems for DRA as a whole and if it appeared to suggest any affiliation
or endorsement with the church that let us use the meeting room. After
much discussion, we decided that in our situation right now, holding our
meetings in donated space was doing no harm. We decided to take another
Group Conscience on this matter a year from now.
were taking in more than we were spending so decided to save three months
running cost and send anything over that to the DRA World Network Central
Office so they could
better spread the message. We can change that if we need some extra to put
on a dance or something, but as a rule of thumb we decided that three
months ahead was a prudent reserve to have on hand.
We do our 7th Tradition half
way through the meeting right before the smoke break. They always remind
everyone that there are no dues or fees for membership and that any
contributions are strictly voluntary. Then they say what the money is used
for. In our case it's for coffee, DRA approved literature, and the rent.
We pay a token rent of only
$10.00 per month. We feel that is a good-will gesture to the church and
helps us remain independent and self-supporting. At first we couldn't
afford it but we made sure we left the room cleaner than we found it with
the chairs in perfect order and everything spotless.
Our Group probably wouldn't be
considered self-supporting yet on all levels. We use an empty conference
room at the treatment center for no charge and they even supply us with
coffee and snacks and have let us use their copy machine and paper to
print up schedules. More than half of the people at our meetings are
inpatients who are going through treatment and we ask that they do not
contribute at our Seventh Tradition break. However, we feel that
self-support happens on more levels than just financial. Our members
support each other in our personal dual recoveries through meetings, phone
and email networking, sponsoring, and our service work. We give back to
the Fellowship and the treatment center by sharing our recovery and hope
with clients and their family members as our weekend meetings are Open DRA
Record keeping is really
important. The club charges us half of whatever we bring in from our
Seventh Tradition for rent. We have two meetings a week and pay our rent
at the end of each month. We pretty much run on a
shoe-string from month to month. We need to know how much is for rent and
how much we have left for coffee, DRA literature, and things like printing
meeting flyers. It's not rocket science but good bookkeeping
stops problems before they get started.
6 | Tradition 8
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