Alateen is Al-Anon and is a program of recovery for young people affected by the drinking problems of others — parents, grandparents, siblings or friends.
Alateen is the responsibility of all in Al-Anon as we seek recovery for our families, our friends, and ourselves from the disease of alcoholism. Younger family members have suffered as we have, and are desperately in need of Twelve Step recovery in Alateen. We in the Minnesota South Area accept the responsibility to provide safe places for Alateen members to find the hope and healing that we have found in Al-Anon
Join us in the great adventure of Alateen Sponsorship! You don’t have to do it alone! Many of us have walked this road before you, and we will help you on the way. This page can help you get started.
Most Alateen groups follow a similar format to regular Al-Anon groups. They differ in that (1) membership is limited to teenagers (this sometimes may include preteens), and (2) an Alateen group must have at least one Al-Anon member (preferably two) as group sponsor. Only Alateens and Al-Anon members who have been certified to be Alateen adult sponsors may attend an Alateen meeting, unless the meeting is explicitly open and anyone may attend.
Thus Alateen cannot exist without Al-Anon members willing to be Alateen sponsors.
Is Alateen Sponsorship for you? You might start by downloading Alateen Sponsorship, Is it for you? (S27, PDF) produced by the WSO. If you can answer “yes” to some of the questions, you would probably find being an Alateen adult sponsor rewarding.
An invaluable resource for anyone thinking of becoming an AMIAS is the Alateen Service e-Manual (PDF). This is filled with tips and topics for Al‑Anon Members Involved in Alateen Service (AMIAS). The section headings are Overview of Alateen Service, Becoming an Alateen Group Sponsor, Starting an Alateen group, Organization of an Alateen group, Role of Alateen Group Sponsors in Alateen Group Meetings, Relationships with Alateens, Role of Alateen Group Sponsors/AMIAS outside of group meetings, Alateen participation in events, Spreading the word – Alateen public outreach, Challenges in Alateen service, WSO Resources, Alateen Safety, and Legal Issues. This is required reading for anyone hoping to be an AMIAS.
Another, much less comprehensive, source of information is the pamphlet A Guide for Sponsors of Alateen Groups (P-29) available in the Information Services and Intergroup book stores.
To ensure the safety of Alateen members, at the direction of the Al-Anon Family Groups Board of Trustees, Adult Alateen sponsors and other Al-Anon members who work with Alateens are required to register with and be certified by Minnesota South Area. Such Al-Anon members are also known as AMIAS (Al-Anon Members Involved in Alateen Service).
Each AMIAS must meet certain requirements detailed in the Minnesota South Area (MSAA) Alateen Safety Policy. These requirements include being at least 21 years old, having been in Al-Anon at least two years, not counting time in Alateen, and undergoing a background check. In addition, each AMIAS must attend at least one AMIAS training session each calendar year. Upcoming sessions are listed on this page.
The requirements extend to volunteers who provide transportation to Alateen events or who work with Alateens at a convention such as Gopher State Roundup or Minnesota Fellowship Weekend since they are also considered to be AMIAS.
If you think you might be interested in becoming an AMIAS, as a group sponsor, substitute sponsor, transportation sponsor or conference sponsor, you should read a summary of the requirements and the certification process. From this page you can download the forms and other information that you will need to get the certification process going.
If you are already a Minnesota South Area certified AMIAS, your certification needs to be renewed every year by April 30. You can download the AMIAS recertification form (PDF).
If you are in Minnesota North Area you should contact the Minnesota North Area Alateen Coordinator or Area Alateen Process Person. The safety of Alateens at Minnesota North meetings is protected by the Minnesota North Area Minimum Alateen Safety Requirements (PDF).
A group with any sponsors who are not certified will not be recognized by the WSO or Minnesota South or North Areas and will be asked to disband. In particular, such groups will not be listed on the web or in meeting directories.
The wonderful literature written by and for Alateens is a great resource for sponsors. There are two daily readers, Alateen–a day at a time (B-10) and Living Today in Alateen (B3), and two wonderful books with readings on the Steps and Traditions, Alateen – Hope for Children of Alcoholics (B-3) (also available as e-book eB-3) and Courage to Be – Me Living with Alcoholism (B-23). These all can be used in meetings and read by Alateens outside of meetings. Some groups give a daily reader to each newcomer.
Among the many helpful pamphlets are
the workbook Alateen’s 4th Step
Inventory (P-64), Twelve Steps
and Twelve Traditions for Alateens (P-18), and Alateen
Talks Back on: Acceptance (P-68), Detachment
(P-73), Serenity (P-69)
and Slogans (P-70). These can be
purchased either from Minneapolis
Al-Anon/Alateen Services or St. Paul Al-Anon/Alateen
Groups or districts willing to host an Alateen Sponsors Training Session
Contact the Minnesota South Area Alateen Coordinator to learn what this would involve (email@example.com)
Al‑Anon / Alateen
Information Services of Greater Minneapolis, Minnesota
7204 West 27th Street
St. Louis Park, MN 55426 USA (map)
Hours: MTWThF 9am - 4pm, Sa 9am - 1pm
St. Paul Area
253 State Street
Saint Paul, MN 55107 USA (map)
Hours: MTThF 12 noon - 4pm, W 12 noon - 8pm, Sa 9am - 1pm