Info on Giving

“The Seventh Tradition ensures that every SAA group takes full responsibility for its own needs and expenses. As addicts, we were often all too ready to shirk responsibility and allow others to take care of us, clean up our messes, and attend to the necessities of life. In the program we learn instead to be accountable for ourselves and our recovery.”

— Sex Addicts Anonymous, page 87

Information on Supporting ISO of SAA, Inc.

If you are an SAA member and are ready to donate, click on the link below that corresponds to the type of donation you are making.

If you do not know what type of donation to make, or if you want more information about your options, read on below.

Quick links to the subjects below


Where does ISO Income Come From

For its support, the International Service Organization of Sex Addicts Anonymous depends on two primary revenue streams. These sources of income, along with 2016’s percentages of ISO income are as follows:

 Donations   65.0%
 Sales 23.0%
Endowment Fund

From these numbers, it is obvious that donations are the life blood for the ISO’s ability to serve the fellowship of SAA and to do its part in carrying the message to the addict who still suffers.

The Seventh Tradition

In accepting donations, the ISO adheres to the Seventh Tradition, which states:

“Every SAA group ought to be fully self-supporting, declining outside contributions.”

When it comes to donations – whether money or in-kind goods or services – the Seventh Tradition means the ISO cannot accept anything unless it comes from an SAA member. That makes for a simple rule of thumb: if you are not a member of SAA, we cannot accept your support.

However, if you are a member, the ISO not only can accept your donation but needs and solicits it. The only restriction on donations from individual members is that they cannot exceed 3% of the annual budget of the ISO of the date tendered of the gift, bequest, or lifeline.  The current limit based on the 2017 budget is $23,000.00.  All donations to the ISO are tax deductible under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Service Code. Each donation is acknowledged with a receipt, and those who give $100 or more during any given year also receive a donation summary letter each January. Keeping these important details in mind, there are a number of ways you can financially support your service organization.

LifeLine Partners

In 1995 the Board of Trustees established the LifeLine Partners program as a way for individual members and groups to contribute to the ISO on a regular basis. This program has become a vital source of support for the ISO and last year accounted for 47% of all individual donations.

As a LifeLine Partner the member or group pledges to contribute a specific amount each month. Some members fulfill their pledge by sending in a monthly check, but most arrange for the ISO to process their LifeLine Partner gift using a credit or debit card. Nothing could be easier.

To enroll as a LifeLine Partner, start online at our secure Lifeline web page. (Click here)

General Donations

Some individual members and most SAA groups that support the ISO do so by simply sending in donations without making a formal pledge. Such donations are called general donations, because they go toward funding general operating expenses. Last year, general donations made up 38% of all individual donations and 88% of all group donations.

Although there are now more than 1,800 SAA groups, only about 20% of the groups support the ISO directly.  If that percentage doubled, the additional support would reduce the ISO’s dependence on literature sales by as much as 75%.

To make a general donation, start online at our secure general donation web page. (Click here)

Giving Thanks Events

In 2003, an SAA member from San Francisco wanted to find a special way to show his gratitude for the work that was being done by the ISO in service to the fellowship and to the sex addict who still suffers. He invited other SAA members from the Bay Area into his home on a Saturday afternoon in November for the specific purpose of giving thanks to the ISO. Appropriately, the event became known as Giving Thanks I. More than $7,000 was raised, and the November Giving Thanks afternoons been held annually in the Bay Area ever since raising more than $240,000.

Other local SAA fellowships begin to follow the Bay Area’s example. The Houston Giving Thanks has raised over $186,000 since 2008 and the Phoenix Giving Thanks has raised over $6,000 since 2012.  Hopefully, more local SAA fellowships will follow suit.

We have a web page that gives an easy to follow step-by-step guide for hosting a Giving Thanks event in. To learn more (Click here)

Outreach Endowment Fund

The Outreach Endowment Fund was established in 1999 using $22,000 in seed money donated to the Greater Houston Community Foundation by eleven SAA members. In 2016, the fund was worth $137,000. There are a number of features of the Outreach Endowment Fund that are essential to understanding it and its relationship to the ISO.

  1. Donations to the Outreach Fund are not made to the ISO. They are made to the Greater Houston Community Foundation. This offers SAA members a path for supporting the ISO without revealing their membership in SAA, e.g., during the reading of a will.  All documentation related to these gifts comes from the Greater Houston Community Foundation, including certification that the donation is tax deductible.
  2. The Greater Houston Community Foundation is the holder and administrator of the Outreach Endowment Fund. For its services, the Foundation charges fees based on the funds value.
  3. The ISO Board of Trustees acts in an advisory capacity with sole authority for designating how earnings for the fund are to be distributed. In its agreement with the Greater Houston Community Foundation, the Board has established that 80% of the annual earnings from the fund are to be distributed to the ISO and 20% of the annual earnings are to be retained and added to the fund’s holdings.
  4. By agreement with the Greater Houston Community Foundation, the ISO Board of Trustees retains the right to dissolve the fund at any time, with all holdings being disbursed to the ISO.
  5. Even though gifts are actually made to the Greater Houston Community Foundation, the Seventh Tradition still applies. Only SAA members may contribute to the Outreach Endowment Fund.
  6. The money distributed from the fund to the ISO can be used only to for outreach.
  7. To insure that the money from the Outreach Endowment Fund never exercises undue influence on the ISO, any annual distribution that exceeds 15% of the previous year’s operating expense must be split in two, with 15% of the total being put into the general operating fund and 85% being held in reserve until its disposition is decided upon by the ISO delegates.
  8. The ISO’s individual cap on donations does not apply to gifts made to the Greater Houston Community Foundation for the Outreach Endowment Fund.
  9. The minimum donation amount the Greater Houston Community Foundation will accept for the Outreach Endowment Fund is $2,500.
  10. There are many forms in which gifts to the endowment fund can be made. Among them:
    • Cash
    • Marketable Securities
    • Restricted Securities (144 or 145 stock)
    • Non-Publicly Traded Securities
    • Naming the Outreach Endowment Fund in a member’s will
    • Name the fund as a Life Insurance Beneficiary
    • Real Estate
    • Interest in Limited Family Partnerships
    • Charitable Remainder Trusts (annuity or unitrust)
    • Charitable Lead Trusts
    • Designating the fund as a member’s 401K Plan Beneficiary

To make a contribution to the Outreach Endowment Fund, contact the ISO office (800-477-8191). You will be put in touch with the Greater Houston Community Foundation, which will assist you in making your gift.