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What is alcoholics anonymous


AA Preamble

Alcoholics Anonymous is a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength, and hope with each other that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from alcoholism. The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop drinking. There are no dues or fees for AA membership. We are self supporting through our own contributions. AA is not allied with any sect, denomination, politics, organization, or institution; does not wish to engage in any controversy, neither endorses nor opposes any causes. Our primary purpose is to stay sober and help other alcoholics to achieve sobriety.     Copyright © by A.A. Grapevine, Inc.


Who We Are

We in A.A. are men and women who have discovered, and admitted, that we cannot control alcohol. We have learned that we must live without it if we are to avoid disaster for ourselves and those close to us.

With local groups in thousands of communities, we are part of an informal international fellowship, which now has members in 150 countries. We have but one primary purpose: to stay sober ourselves and to help others who may turn to us for help in achieving sobriety.     Copyright © 1984 Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.


What does A.A. NOT do?

  1. A.A. does not run membership drives to try to argue alcoholics into joining. A.A. is for alcoholics who want to get sober.
  2. A.A. does not check up on its members to see that they don't drink. It helps alcoholics to help themselves.
  3. A.A. is not a religious organization. All members are free to decide on their own personal ideas about the meaning of life.
  4. A.A. is not a medical organization, does not give out medicines or psychiatric advice.
  5. A.A. does not run any hospitals, wards, or sanitariums or provide nursing services.
  6. A.A. is not connected with any other organization. But A.A. does cooperate with organizations that fight alcoholism. Some members work for such organizations - but on their own - not as representatives of A.A.
  7. A.A. does not accept money from sources outside A.A., either private or government.
  8. A.A. does not offer any social services, does not provide housing, food, clothing, jobs, or money. It helps alcoholics stay sober, so they can earn these things for themselves.
  9. Alcoholics Anonymous lives up to the "Anonymous" part of its title. It does not want members' full names or faces to be revealed on radio TV, newspapers or on new media technologies such as the Internet. And members do not tell other members' names to people outside A.A. But members are not ashamed of belonging to A.A. They just want to encourage more alcoholics to come to A.A. for help. And they do not want to make heroes and heroines of themselves simply for taking care of their own health.
  10. A.A. does not provide letters of reference to parole boards, lawyers, court officials, social agencies, employers, etc.

        Copyright © 1972 Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.