Help starting a new group

Congratulations on having the courage to start a new OA meeting.

Things you should know about starting a group

In order to be recognised as an OA Group you must adhere to the following five criteria:

    • As a Group, they meet to practice the Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions of OA, guided by the Twelve Concepts of OA Service.
    • All who have a desire to stop eating compulsively are welcomed in the group.
    • No member is required to practise any actions in order to remain a member of the group or to have a voice (share at a meeting).
    • As a group they have no affiliation other than OA.
    • It has affiliated as an Overeaters Anonymous group by registering with the World Service Office.

From OA Inc Bylaws Subpart B Article V Section 1 © OA Inc

Getting help with your group

We recommend the following steps to ensure you receive the help you need and so that your meeting can be found by the still suffering compulsive eater:

  1.  Register your Group with WSO. This is necessary to ensure that the group is recognised as an OA group. It also means that you will receive information about OA world-wide and that your group details will appear on the meeting list. This will enable potential members in Great Britain to find you. (The Find a Meeting page on this website links through to the WSO website). As a registered group you can take part in forming OA policies. You can register your group online using this link.
  2. Register your meeting with your local Intergroup and attend their meetings. This is important so that you are linked in with your local OA community. Some Intergroups are able to offer a little financial assistance as a start up, for example, to purchase literature. They will also let local members know about your new group and may be able to arrange for support from long term members etc. Most Intergroups meet around every two months and attending will aid your own recovery as well as your understanding of the wider OA service structure.
  3. Buy a copy of OAGB’s New Group Starter Pack from OAGB Literature. The pack includes useful information for new groups in this country as well as some basic literature. You can download an OAGB Literature order form from the literature page.
  4. Sign up to the OAGB email loop to receive information about OA events in this country by clicking here.
  5. Download a copy of the Suggested meeting format.
  6. Tent card pyramidEnsure your group is fully self-supporting. You might want to use the annual costs for service levels spreadsheet to work out your weekly running costs and display a completed tent card at each meeting. Instructions on how to complete the tent card can be found on the spreadsheet (Excel file).
  7. For ideas about how to publicise your group, see our Public Information page.
  8. If your meeting details change, update them on the meeting list by going to  If your meeting is closed temporarily due to a holiday or other circumstance, put this information in the Additional Notes box.
  9. See the Group Support page on the WSO website for a world of ideas, information and downloadable resources.

If you need help, the National Service Board of OAGB is here to assist you. Email us at