The 12 Step Telephone Committee is the front line of assistance for alcoholics who need help when our Central Office is closed. We are the people who answer the phone when someone calls after hours.
This commitment is the heart of A.A.’s primary purpose, “To carry the message to the Alcoholic who still suffers”, and takes only a few hours each month. Anyone with a year’s sobriety is qualified to participate.
Calls are for information or assistance. If the call is for information, like, ‘Where is there a meeting near by?’ the volunteer looks in the schedule and gives directions. If the call is for assistance, and the caller is a real twelve-step candidate, the volunteer looks to the twelve step list and calls someone to provide assistance. The volunteer does not go on the twelve-step call! That’s the task of the person from the list.
Here’s how it happens. When the Central Office closes, the volunteer for that night calls a special number and sets up the Central Office’s phone so that it rings at his/her home or cell phone. This is done using the phone company’s Remote Call Forwarding service. When it’s time for the next person to take over, he/she then switches the phone to that person’s number. Finally, when the office opens again, the phone is transferred back. No one needs to go to the office to make these switches.