Alcoholics Anonymous 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 to help other alcoholics to achieve sobriety.
Reprinted with permission of The A.A. Grapevine, Inc.
What Does A.A. Do?
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. Open speaker meetings - open to alcoholics and non alcoholics. (Attendance at an open A.A. meeting is the best way to learn what A.A. is, what it does, and what it does not do). At speaker meetings A.A. members “tell their stories". They describe their experiences with alcohol, how they came to A.A., and how their lives have changed as a result of Alcoholics Anonymous.
b. Open discussion meetings - one member speaks briefly about his or her drinking experience, and then leads a discussion on A.A. recovery or any drinking-related problem anyone brings up. (Closed meetings are for A.A.s or anyone who may have a drinking problem). c. Closed discussion meetings - conducted just as open discussions are, but for alcoholics or prospective A.A.s only.
d. Step meetings (usually closed) - discussion of one of the Twelve Steps.
e. A.A. members also take meetings into correctional and treatment facilities.
f. A.A. members may be asked to conduct informational meetings about A.A. as a part of A.S.A.P. (Alcohol Safety Action Project) and D.W.I. (Driving While Intoxicated) programs. These meetings about A.A. are not regular A.A. group meetings.
What A.A. Does Not Do:
1. A.A. does not furnish initial motivation for alcoholics to recover.
2. A.A. does not solicit members.
3. A.A. does not engage in or sponsor research.
4. A.A. does not keep attendance records or case histories.
5. A.A. does not join “councils” of social agencies.
6. A.A. does not follow up or try to control its members.
7. A.A. does not make medical or psychological diagnoses or prognoses.
8. A.A. does not provide drying-out or nursing services, hospitalization, drugs, or any medical or psychiatric treatment.
9. A.A. does not offer religious services or host/sponsor retreats.
10. A.A. does not engage in education about alcohol.
11. A.A. does not provide housing, food, clothing, jobs, money, or any other welfare or social services.
12. A.A. does not provide domestic or vocational counseling.
13. A.A. does not accept any money for its services, or any contributions from non-A.A. sources.
14. A.A. does not provide letters of reference to parole boards, lawyers, court officials, social agencies, employers, etc.