A.A. 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 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.
Reprinted with permission.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is A.A.?

Alcoholics Anonymous is a fellowship of men and women who have or have had a problem with drinking. It is nonprofessional, self-supporting, apolitical, and open to people of all races, creeds, religions, or no religion. There are no requirements for membership other than a desire to stop drinking.

How much does it cost to go to A.A.?

There are no dues or fees for A.A. membership. An A.A. group will usually have a collection during the meeting to cover expenses such as rent, coffee, etc., and all members are free to contribute.

Who can join A.A.?

Anyone with a drinking problem may attend closed A.A. meetings, and anyone may attend open A.A. meetings. Anyone with a desire to stop drinking may become a member of Alcoholics Anonymous. You are a member when you say you are.

What happens in an A.A. meeting?

There are several different formats of A.A. meetings, including but not limited to speaker meetings, book-study meetings, and discussion meetings.

  • At speaker meetings, A.A. members tell their stories of their experience with their problem with alcohol, how they came to A.A., and what their lives are like since then.
  • At book-study meetings, A.A. members read A.A. literature (“Big Book” Alcoholics Anonymous, Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, or another A.A. Conference-approved book), and A.A. members share their experience with the topic.
  • At discussion meetings, a topic common to all alcoholics is discussed.

Each group uses its own format and is not required to conform to any mandated style. No one takes attendance. No one is required to share if they don’t want to. There is no fee for attending. Only members give voluntary contributions.

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