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AA helping keep 5000 alcoholics sober

Alcoholics Anonymous helping keep 5000 alcoholics sober

Alcoholics Anonymous has released the results of a survey of members that shows that AA is successfully helping around 5,000 members to stay sober.

The survey undertaken in early 2004 was a census of AA’s membership and was conducted by AA members with statistical backgrounds. There have been other surveys in 1976, 1980, 1984 and 1993.

AA is a non-professional self funded organisation receiving no donations or support from outside AA. The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop drinking alcohol. Being ‘sober’ - the goal of AA - is total abstinence from alcohol.

Some of the findings of the survey include: The best estimate of members that attend meetings at least once a year was between 4600-5400. The most common first influence (for 25% of members) in coming to AA was another AA member. For those members who had been sober less than two years, the most common first influence was advice from a treatment centre. The mean (average) length of sobriety was about 7.5 years. On average, AA members had been in AA about 4 years longer than they had been sober showing that continued sobriety can take time for members. AA members on average attend between 2 and 3 meetings a week (2.5) which compares to both the United States (2 per week) and the UK (2.9 per week). Newer members are more likely to attend more meetings. Approximately 40% of AA members were female. The proportion of female members has been steadily increasing (from 22% in 1976 to 40% in 2004). This has also been the case in the United States and the United Kingdom. Roughly 60% of AA members were between 35 and 54 years old. Approximately 24% of AA members also had drug problems.

The results released may help raise awareness of the upcoming annual Alcoholics Anonymous public information weeks from 14 to 20 and 20-27 February.

For more detail on the survey:

Information on the traditions regarding spokespeople ….. 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.

ANONYMITY OF A.A. MEMBERS Information for media

For many years, we in A.A. have appreciated the support we have received from our friends in the media. Media have assisted in saving countless lives. We seek your continued cooperation in protecting the anonymity of our members at the public level.

We ask, therefore, that in presenting A.A. members: you use first names only you do not use pictures in which their faces may be recognized. Anonymity lies at the heart of our Fellowship and assures our members that their recovery will be private. Often, the active alcoholic will avoid any source of help which might reveal his or her identity. Alcoholics Anonymous is not affiliated with any other organization, although many have adapted A.A.’s Twelve Steps for their own use. A.A. is self-supporting, declining outside contributions; and we are non-professional, offering only the voluntary support of one alcoholic helping another.

Throughout the world, favourable media coverage has been one of the principal means of bringing alcoholics into our Fellowship. You have helped make this possible, and for that we thank you.

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