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ICSA resources about psychological manipulation, cultic groups, sects, and new religious movements.




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ICSA does NOT maintain a list of "bad" groups or "cults."  We nonjudgmentally list groups on which we have information.

Groups listed, described, or referred to on ICSA's Web sites may be mainstream or nonmainstream, controversial or noncontroversial, religious or nonreligious, cult or not cult, harmful or benign.

We encourage inquirers to consider a variety of opinions, negative and positive, so that inquirers can make independent and informed judgments pertinent to their particular concerns.

Views expressed on our Web sites are those of the document's author(s) and are not necessarily shared, endorsed, or recommended by ICSA or any of its directors, staff, or advisors.

See:  Definitional Issues Collection; Understanding Groups Collection

Views expressed on our Web sites are those of the document's author(s) and are not necessarily shared, endorsed, or recommended by ICSA or any of its directors, staff, or advisors


Vol. 3, No. 6

Annual Report: Letter From the President

Herbert L. Rosedale, Esq.

Dear Supporters:

On behalf of the thousands of people whom AFF has assisted this year, I thank you for your continued interest in our work combating psychological manipulation and cultic groups. Your support enables AFF to provide a full range of services, including information and referral, public and professional education, preventive education for youth, research and writing projects, and assistance to families and former group members. A summary of the achievements to which you have contributed follows:

Information Service and Cult Information Line

AFF's Information Service has experienced unprecedented demand in 1997; requests for our resources have doubled in less than two years. We anticipate ever-increasing demands on our resources in 1998, in large part because of the expansion of our Internet services (described below).

AFF's Cult Information Line

We are available Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (eastern). Please note our new Cult Information Line: 239.514.3081. Our experienced telephone consultants offer caring support and referrals and AFF's balanced, nuanced, and research-based resources. Their work has been enhanced by the following developments:

  • Marked improvement of the visual quality of our materials.
  • Increase in the number of professionals volunteering their expertise.

Internet Services About Cults And Psychological Manipulation-AFF's Internet resource:

  • 100,000 visitors in 1997.
  • 500 award-winning pages.
  • "This Web site could save your life, or the life of someone you cherish...Highly Recommended."-Reuters-Health Information Service.

AFF News Briefs-AFF's new e-mail newsletter:

  • Provides timely, cost-effective announcements of AFF's resources, programs, and current cult-related events.

Press Information Home Page-AFF's online cult-information resource for the media:

  • Answers to the most frequently asked questions.
  • Profiles and access to former cult members and families available for interviews.
  • Bibliographic information.
  • Statistical information.
  • Soon to include audio and video clips.


Press Information Briefs-Proactive e-mail and fax resources for the press:

  • Interview contacts.
  • Notification of potential story leads.
  • Announcements of AFF workshops, conferences and events.


Goal 2000-Cost-Effective Education

As more and more people get online, the demand for cost-effective, electronic information is growing exponentially. By the year 2000-with your help-we will electronically convert our resources, establishing a comprehensive, online archive including:

We need additional financial support for substantial investments in new equipment, software, and manpower.

Family Education Center

Thanks to a special grant, AFF will soon open a Family Education Center (FEC). Under the direction of Michael Langone, Ph.D. AFF's FEC will provide consultation and an exciting new generation of resources for families. AFF's Family Education Center plans to:

  • Provide families with as much information as possible about helping options, including exit counseling-which is a completely voluntary process.
  • We applaud those exit counselors devoted to increasing the professionalism of their field.
  • Refine and further develop AFF's detailed curricula, including new self-study guides.
  • Based on the success of AFF's Family Workshops in New York, Philadelphia, and Delray, Florida, we plan to expand the frequency of our local, regional and national Family Workshops. The next family workshop is scheduled for the spring of 1998 in Maryland. Please let us know if you would like to host a Family Workshop in your area.


AFF's 1998 Annual Conference (May 29-30) in Philadelphia, which will focus on children and cults, will also include support sessions for families and former members.

Local and Regional Workshops

We are also developing streamlined curricula that will enable us to send a two-person team to conduct affordable family and ex-member workshops for small groups of people in any geographic area.

If you are interested in organizing a workshop in your area, contact AFF.

Project Outreach - Ex-member Support

Project Outreach, led by Carol Giambalvo, continues its work with ex-members.

Weekend ex-member workshops were held this year in September (Colorado) and November (New York). The next scheduled workshop will be in Colorado next July. There will be ex-member support sessions at AFF's Annual Meeting in Philadelphia May 29-30, 1998.

Preventive Education

AFF is also very active on the education front. Our Director of Education, Ronald Loomis, conducts exciting programs for colleges and universities. Thousands of schools, churches, colleges, and universities have benefited from the preventive education videos, lesson plans, and other resources developed by AFF's International Cult Education Program, under the leadership of Marcia Rudin.


Although the practical services described above are vital, AFF's most distinctive contribution to this field is the linking of practical service with professional study and research (most recently, for example, we published the second, revised edition of our book The Boston Movement:Critical Perspectives).

We study the field so as to increase our understanding. Then we apply this improved understanding to the development of educational and victim-assistance resources. The informal and formal feedback of the people we help then gets factored into our continuing study and research, reported upon in the Cult Observer, Cultic Studies Journal, AFF News Briefs, special reports, professional journals, and books. Thus, today we are more effective than yesterday, and tomorrow we will be more effective than today.




+ AFF News, 01.02: Giambalvo, Carol: "Post-Cult Problems: An Exit Counselor's Perspective"
+ AFF News, 02.01: Martin, Paul, Ph.D.: "Pitfalls To Recovery"
+ AFF News, 02.02: Ford, Wendy: "The Role of the Family"
+ AFF News, 02.05: Lifton, Robert J., M.D.: "Cult Formation"
+ AFF News, 02.06: Rosedale, Herb: "Annual Report From the President"
+ AFF News, 03.01: Lalich, Janja Ph.D.: "Crazy" Therapies: What are They? Do They Work? - The Therapeutic Relationship
+ AFF News, 03.03: Lalich, Janja Ph.D.: "We Own Her Now"
+ AFF News, 03.05: Rosedale, Herb: "Conference Report"
+ AFF News, 03.06: Rosedale, Herb: "Annual Report: Letter From the President"
+ AFF News, 04.02: Stein, Alexandra: "Recovering From a Political Cult"
+ AFF News, 04.03: Henry, Roseanne: "Why We Need To Become Spiritual Consumers"
Andron, Sandy, Ed.D.: "Problem Solving An Approach for the Cult-Impacted Family"
Lalich, Janja, Ph.D.: "Individual Differences Affecting Recovery"
√ Products - periodicals: AFF News

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