Service Guidelines


Those who have gone before us recognize that service is critical to recovery and is part of the Twelfth step.  Service work is a place to practice recovery skills and extend our recovery to new areas of our lives.  At the group level, CoDA members carry the message in many ways, by sharing in meetings, speaking to newcomers (with a focus on providing information rather than giving advice) and trying to adhere to CoDA principles in meetings and elsewhere in their lives. Members can start practicing these types of service from early on in their recovery. For outreach activities outside the group, however, whether at the regional, country or world level, CoDA has developed guidelines to help members act in accordance with the principles embedded in the Twelve Traditions.

This section addresses the following topics:

  • CoDA’s Twelve Traditions as Guides to Service Work – Offers reflections on how traditions can be incorporated into service work, and guiding questions to consider as part of a reflective “service work inventory”
  • CoDA Public Information Resources – Lists regional, national and world resources for CoDA-approved materials, such as those created for healthcare professionals and institutions, and lists suggested materials for distribution
  • CoDA Communications Guidelines – Distills guidelines from the CoDA Fellowship Service Manual, including those on anonymity and use of social media, as they apply to outreach work

Before Engaging in Outreach or Other Service: Please review CoDA’s Twelve Service Concepts, which guide our service work as a fellowship.

Outreach service can provide a valuable opportunity to try something new; to share our experience, strength, and hope with others; and to learn to let go of expectations.  As codependents, we may inadvertently give to others at the expense of ourselves. If so, a healthy balance can often be achieved with guidance.  It is suggested that you check in with your Higher Power and a sponsor or recovery friends to make sure the level of service work you are considering is healthy for you.

FEEDBACK & SUBMISSIONS FOR THIS PAGE:  The Outreach Resource Guide (ORG) is a work in progress which depends on contributions from you, our fellowship members. Please submit suggestions and materials by going to the submissions page for further instructions.

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The content of these webpages has been approved by the Outreach Committee but may not have been reviewed, endorsed, or approved by Co-Dependents Anonymous Inc.