Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)


What is ACA?

ACA stands for “Adult Children of Alcoholics”. ACA is a twelve-step program focused on helping adults who grew up in alcoholic or similar dysfunctional homes deal with issues commonly experienced by people with this background. You can find more information about ACA at the official World Service Organization website.


Who organizes the Convention?

The ACA Convention is organized by volunteers who wish to help other ACA's in their journey of recovery. The Convention is completely non-profit; nobody is paid or compensated for their time except for token honorariums given to speakers. Prices for registration and the optional meal plans are designed to allow us to recover our costs only. A prudent reserve is carried over each year to seed fund the next Convention.


Is this ACA Convention the same as the past San Diego ACA Convention?

Yes. The ACA Convention was held in San Diego (pre-2000), Lake San Marcos (2000-2007), Cerritos (2008) and Long Beach (2009) in Southern California for many years (with a break from 2010 through 2013). It has enjoyed a strong reputation as a well-run conference with exceptional speakers and great ACA workshops.


The name was changed to the ACA Convention in 2004.


Are you affiliated with ACA World Service Organization (WSO)?

No, we are not affiliated with or endorsed by the ACA World Service Organization. We are an independent ACA 12-Step group that has met for decades in Southern California to create this annual ACA recovery-oriented convention for adult children of alcoholics and dysfunctional families. We submit an "event listing" request each year to the WSO so the ACA Convention is listed as a non-WSO sponsored event on the ACA WSO webpage.


Who can attend the Convention?

The Convention is open to all people who identify with The Problem. Because the topics discussed and the content of people's sharing can be intense and emotional, we recommend parents consider carefully if they should bring children with them. There is no childcare available at the Convention, the sessions are geared towards adult issues, and historically the attendees have been almost entirely adults.


How is the ACA Convention different from other ACA retreats or conferences?

There are numerous retreats and conferences hosted by various groups affiliated with ACA which are held throughout the year. The ACA Convention is unique in format. It's based in a hotel convention center rather than a camp and is among the largest gatherings of adult children anywhere in the world.


Is my registration tax-deductible?

Probably not. You're welcome to consult a tax professional on this, but IRS guidelines indicate you may only deduct the portion of gifts which exceed the value of any service or products received. Although ACA is a non-profit entity, because our registration and meal fees are designed to just cover our costs, and there are no contributions to ACA embedded in our costs, your registration is probably not tax-deductible. However, any donations you make to ACA through WSO are fully tax-deductible.


Is the Convention facility accessible to seniors and the physically challenged?

The Crowne Plaza has guest rooms designed for the physically challenged, and all rooms used by the Convention are wheelchair accessible.


I don't attend ACA meetings. Can I attend the Convention?

Anyone who identifies with The Problem is welcome to attend.