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What is A.A.?

Alcoholics Anonymous is a fellowship of people who share their
experience, strength and hope with each other that they may
solve their common problem and help others to recover from

The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop drinking.
There are no dues or fees for A.A. membership; we are self supporting through our own contributions. A.A. 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 © The AA Grapevine, Inc.

What A.A. Does and Does not Do

A.A. Does

  1. A.A. members share their experience with anyone seeking help with a drinking problem; they give person-to-person service or “sponsorship” to the alcoholic coming to A.A. from any source.

  2. The A.A. program, set forth in our Twelve Steps, offers the alcoholic a way to develop a satisfying life without alcohol.

  3. This program is discussed at A.A. group meetings.

A.A. Does Not

1. Furnish initial motivation for alcoholics to recover. 2. Solicit members. 3. Engage in or sponsor research. 4. Keep attendance records or case histories. 5. Join “councils” of social agencies (although A.A. members, groups and service offices frequently cooperate with them). 6. Follow up or try to control its members. 7. Make medical or psychological diagnoses or prognoses. 8. Provide detox or nursing services, hospitalization, drugs, or any medical or psychiatric treatment. 9. Offer religious services or host/sponsor retreats. 10. Engage in education about alcohol. 11. Provide housing, food, clothing, jobs, money, or any other welfare or social services. 12. Provide domestic or vocational counseling. 13. Accept any money for its services, or any contributions from non-A.A. sources. 14. Provide letters of reference to parole boards, lawyers, court officials, social agencies, employers, etc.

Stack of Books

Read A.A. Literature Online

Find more at

The A.A. "Big Book"

Affectionately known as "The Big Book," Alchohoics Anonymous is A.A.'s basic text.

Twelve Steps & Twelve Traditions

A.A. members reflect on favorite quotes from A.A. Literature.  The volume focuses on all three legacies of recovery; unity, and service.

Daily Reflections

A helpful guide to practicing the 12 steps of recovery and the 12 traditions of A.A. in everyday life.

What's all this about anonymity?

A.A. Legacies
(Click underlined text for more information)

Twelve Steps - The Twelve Steps are outlined in the book Alcoholics Anonymous. They can be found at the beginning of the chapter “How It Works.” Essays on the Steps can be read in the book Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions.  Read more here.

Twelve Traditions - The Twelve Traditions provide guidelines for relationships between the groups, members, the global Fellowship and society at large.  Read more

Twelve Concepts - The Twelve Concepts for World Service were written by A.A.’s co-founder Bill W., and were adopted by the General Service Conference of Alcoholics Anonymous in 1962. The Concepts are an interpretation of A.A.’s world service structure as it emerged through A.A.’s early history and experience.  Read more

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