What you need to know and do to become an Alateen Sponsor

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To serve as an Alateen group sponsor, substitute group sponsor, transportation sponsor or conference sponsor in Minnesota South Area, you must be a certified AMIAS (Al-Anon Member Involved in Alateen Service). There are specific requirements for someone to become an AMIAS and there is a process that must be completed.

There is a lot of information available to help Alateen sponsors. Before you start the process, it is suggested that you download and read the Alateen Service e-Manual (PDF). It is a trove of information about all aspects of Alateen service, from starting a group to Alateen safety. It’s required reading before you attend your first AMIAS training session.

Requirements

  1. You must be an Al‑Anon member regularly attending Al‑Anon meetings, working with a sponsor.
  2. You must be at least 21 years old.
  3. You must have at least two years in Al‑Anon, in addition to any time spent in Alateen.
  4. You must complete a background check process verifying that you have not been convicted of a felony and have not been charged with child abuse or any other inappropriate sexual behavior.
  5. You must not have demonstrated emotional problems which could result in harm to Alateen members.

All of these but the background check were mandated by an Al‑Anon Family Groups Board of Trustees motion in 2003. Conducting background checks is our way of ensuring that felons and child abusers can't become Alateen Sponsors.

Additionally, every AMIAS is required to attend an AMIAS training session prior to certification. Attendance at a training session must be repeated annually.

These requirements are part of the Minnesota South Area Alateen Safety Policy which was developed in response to the Board of Trustees motion. You should familiarize yourself with it before starting the certification process. You can download the policy in PDF format. You should also read the WSO Guideline on Alateen Safety (G34) (PDF).

Process

Our Minnesota South Area Alateen Process Person (AAPP) approves your application to become a certified AMIAS. A flowchart (PDF) of the Minnesota South Area certification process may be helpful.

Next, you'll want to attend an AMIAS training, scheduled periodically at various locations throughout Minnesota South Area. Our schedule of AMIAS trainings is posted on the Alateen Sponsors' page. If no training session is scheduled at a time and place that is convenient, email our Minnesota South Area Alateen Coordinators <mnsa.afg.ac@gmail.com>. Consider asking to be added to our prospective AMIAS email list so you will automatically receive notice of upcoming training sessions.

You should download our AMIAS application package (PDF). Hard copies are also provided at AMIAS training sessions. This package includes the following documents and forms.

Submit your completed application forms to Scott T, our Minnesota South Area Alateen Process Person <mnsa.afg.scott@gmail.com>. Email him or call/text 952-491-0515 to obtain his mailing address. Please allow 48 hours for a response. Emailing scans of completed forms may be more secure than submitting hard copies via US Postal Service mail.

The AAPP will submit your information to an outside agency which will carry out a background check. The AAPP is the only person who has access to the results.

The AAPP will forward your Al-Anon references to our Area Alateen Coordinators, Abby and Stanton. They will call your references to verify that you are who you say you are and to ensure that you are recommended to work with Alateens. You can speed up the process by directly emailing your references’ contact information to mnsa.afg.ac@gmail.com.

You should hear something back within a couple of weeks after submitting your application to the AAPP. Please let Scott know if that doesn’t happen or if you have further questions, have further reference contact information, or would like to discuss your application.