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A.A. Meetings

The following is additional information on AA programs, courtesy of Alcoholics Anonymous. For more detailed information please contact Alcoholics Anonymous directly.

A.A. Meetings

The two most common kinds of A.A. meetings are:

OPEN MEETINGS: As the term suggests, meetings of this type are open to alcoholics and their families and to anyone interested in solving a personal drinking problem or helping someone else to solve such a problem.

During the meeting there is usually a period for local A.A. announcements, and a treasurer passes the hat to defray costs of the meeting hall, literature, and incidental expenses. The meeting adjourns, often followed by informal visiting over coffee or other light refreshments.

Guests at A.A. open meetings are reminded that any opinions or interpretations they may hear are solely those of the speaker involved. All members are free to interpret the recovery program in their own terms, but none can speak for the local group or for A.A. as a whole.

CLOSED MEETINGS: These meetings are limited to alcoholics. They provide an opportunity for members to share with one another on problems related to drinking patterns and attempts to achieve stable sobriety. They also permit detailed discussion of various elements in the recovery program.

Internationalists (Seagoing A.A.s)
Approximately 76 persons in naval service or the merchant marine on sea duty describe themselves as “A.A. Internationalists.” General Service Office staff members correspond with these members and make it possible for them to correspond with each other. Internationalists have been responsible for starting and encouraging local A.A. groups in many ports.

Some 223 men and women living in isolated areas throughout the world (or in areas where it has not been possible to form a local group) are listed at the General Service Office as Lone Members. Many achieved sobriety solely through study of A.A. literature. They correspond with G.S.O. and with their counterparts in other sections of the world. In a number of cases, notably U.S. military installations overseas, Loners have been responsible for establishing local groups.

Click here to return to the first part in the series, “Introduction to the A.A. Recovery Program”.

The above information is from “A.A. Fact File”, prepared by General Service Office of Alcoholics Anonymous. This information is also available on G.S.O.’s A.A. Website:

If you have any questions about Alcoholics Anonymous or alcohol treatment, please call us 24-hours at (888) 426-6086 or if you’d like us to contact you, send us a confidential e-mail by filling out our online form.