The Unity and Service Conference stands out as the premier gathering to promote interest in the 12 Traditions and 12 Concepts of AA. The content specifically caters to sponsored members who have worked the steps, but might not yet have a strong grasp of these two important areas. It is the Conference’s hope that attending members will be inspired to volunteer for General Service, as well as discover more ways to put the principles of AA into their everyday lives.
The seed for the Unity and Service Conference appeared in 2012 and sprouted from the friendly conversations of two Love and Service Group members. Almost by accident, Bob D. and Kent D started the local conversation about expanding service and awareness of the Traditions and Concepts. These two men were on fire for the Concepts and Traditions and wanted the world to know it! How could they get more people interested? How could they inspire more service? How could they share their own experience strength and hope with the AA World? Through much hard work and sponsor’s encouragement, the answer appeared: The first Unity and Service Conference came to reality on Labor Day 2016. The event was a resounding success, so much so that it became one of the annual highlights of the San Francisco Bay area.
The year 2020 was a challenging one, due to COVID-19 and the state-wide restrictions on in-person gatherings. There was a very real worry that the momentum over the years could be slowed, and the committee was concerned that there might not be a conference at all. What they did not count on was the ingenuity, resourcefulness, and dedication of AA’s! All around them they saw other events adapt to the situation, finding new ways to interact. They saw the spark of AA continue to burn even in the face of this daunting scenario. Thanks to video-conference technology, the willingness of members to try something new, and everyone’s creative efforts, the 2021 conference would go on! The conference would be virtual, offering members from all over the world an opportunity to share in this once local-only event. How exciting it was to find this much-needed silver lining in a year marked by so many challenges. Last year we attempted to provide the first hybrid conference experience, it was definitely a learning experience.
The Conference Committee has put a lot of hard work into this event, and the speakers are dedicated to doing their best to communicate their own enthusiasm for the 12 Concepts and 12 Traditions. They hope to inspire attendees to catch Bob D. and Kent D.’s fire and take it back to their own friends and local groups. General Service is an amazing chance for AA’s to get involved in the fabric of what keeps AA going. The event’s motto is “The Secret of Service,” which echo’s Bill and Bob’s discovery that indeed it is the secret to success in AA.