Start A Meeting

Congratulations on starting a new H.A. meeting! We have composed a list of some suggestions and a first business meeting format for you and your new group to help get you started.

Suggested meeting formats and readings can be found at the H.A.W.S. Resources page. If you have any questions or would like help in any way, please email us at Thanks for your service!

Tradition 2: For our group purpose there is but one ultimate authority - a loving God as He may express himself in our group conscience. Our leaders are but trusted servants; they do not govern.

Step-By-Step Guide

Invite other heroin addicts to join your homegroup and build your group conscience

  • With keeping Tradition 2 in mind and having a group conscience, you avoid any one person "hijacking" the meeting. Remember that a meeting should never be "my meeting".
  • There's a lot involved in having a meeting: monthly chair person, business meeting chairperson, treasurer, secretary, coffee commitments, set up, clean up, GSR, greeter, figuring out meeting formats and readings, registering your meeting on HAANJPA and H.A.W.S. website, etc. The more people you have at the start, the better!
  • Prepare for your first business meeting. Have people brainstorm what they'd like this meeting to be. Come with name and format suggestions. Direct homegroup members to the H.A. World Service Manual pages 16-19 for guidelines and suggestions for groups.

Have your first business meeting

  • Your new group conscience will meet to discuss and vote on:
    • the meeting day, time, location,
    • the meeting format,
    • the group's officers (chairperson, secretary, GSR, treasurer, etc.)
    • monthly commitments
    • what readings will be read
    • any other new business that comes up in discussion
  • Your group may need to meet more than once before your meeting starts.

Email us to request a free meeting startup kit and register your meeting

  • Have your elected GSR (General Service Representative) fill out this form
  • Email the form to this email address for a free startup kit:
  • Email the form to HAANJPA at and H.A.W.S. at to post your meeting on their websites

Spread the word

  • Some methods we have found successful for getting the word out are:
    • announcing it at other H.A. meetings
    • making flyers and hanging them up in 12-step meeting clubhouses
    • sharing flyers on social media
    • making business cards with meeting info
    • providing food
    • personally inviting others

Resources for Starting Your Own H.A. Meeting

Commonly Used H.A. Meeting Formats

Readings for Meetings

First Business Meeting Format

Hello, welcome to our first business meeting. I would like to remind you that anything the group decides on today can be changed in a future business meeting. Nothing is set in stone.

Let’s open with the Serenity prayer.

New Business:

Go over homegroup positions and guidelines from HAWS. (Descriptions and suggestions for requirements for these service positions can be found on the H.A. World Service Manual on pages 16-19.)

Crucial positions to be filled:

  • General chair
  • Secretary
  • GSR
  • Treasurer

Nominate and elect above group servant positions. If all can’t be filled, that’s okay. Members can share responsibilities or hold positions temporarily until someone is elected.

**Remember! The elected general chair does not have a vote (except to break a tie.) Keep this in mind when nominating and electing a general chair.

Discuss meeting time, address, and expenses/rent for group. Once a motion to accept meeting time, address and expenses is accepted, move on to:

  1. Pick a name for the meeting
  2. Select start date for meeting
  3. Select day for monthly business meeting
  4. Fill in first month’s commitments (who is going to chair, set up meeting, make coffee, etc.)
  5. Vote in meeting format. Some examples are:
    • topic meetings
    • speaker meetings
    • big book studies
    • step meetings
    • tradition meetings
    • topic
    • ask it basket
    • raffle ticket meeting
    • pick a stick meeting
    • anniversary meetings
    • beginner’s meetings

Go over readings and vote in readings. Common readings are “A way out” “tradition of the month” “HA Preamble” “10th step promises” “singleness of purpose” which can be found on

Appoint someone to print out meeting format and readings for meeting.

New members: (record all who are attending first business meeting with first name and last initial. Some groups like to collect contact information as well as sobriety dates.)

Any other new business?

Close meeting