Alcoholics Anonymous 

South Africa



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Recover from Alcoholism

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If, when you honestly want to, you find you cannot quit entirely, or if when drinking, you have little control over the amount you take, you are probably alcoholic. 

 Alcoholics Anonymous, page 44, with permission of A.A. World Services, Inc.




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 religious group, politics, organization or institution; neither supports nor argues any causes. Our most important purpose is to stay sober and help other people who cannot stop drinking.

AA is an informal society of more than 2 million recovering alcoholics throughout the world. In South Africa, there are about 4,500 members. They meet in over 350 local meetings spread around the country. Meetings range in size from a handful in some localities to a hundred or more in larger communities.




AA is nonprofessional – it doesn’t have clinics, doctors, counsellors or psychologists. All members are themselves recovering from alcoholism. There is no central authority controlling how AA groups operate. It is up to the members of each group to decide what they do. However, the AA program of recovery has proved to be so successful that almost every group follows the program as suggested in the literature.

Click here for online help

AA is not a religious organisation nor is it affiliated with any religious body. It welcomes members of all religions, agnostics and atheists alike. You don’t have to sign up or achieve anything to be a member. You’re a member of a group if you choose to be. You can come and go as you please. No one is “in charge” of a group. We work through the offer of help and suggestion only. No one can tell you what you should or shouldn’t do.




AA works through members sharing their stories of what we used to be like, what happened and what we are like now. The AA program, known as The Twelve Steps, provides a framework for self-examination and a road to recovery, free of alcohol.



Is AA for You?



  In our experience, the people who recover in A.A. are those who:

(a) stay away from the first drink;
(b) attend A.A. meetings regularly;
(c) seek out the people in A.A. who have successfully stayed sober for some time;
(d) try to put into practice the A.A. program of recovery;
(e) obtain and study the Big Book, Alcoholics Anonymous
A Newcomer Asks, page 3,  with permission of  A.A. World Services, Inc.


Attend a Meeting

In any meeting, anywhere, A.A.’s share experience, strength, and hope with each other, in order to stay sober and help other alcoholics. Modem-to-modem or face-to-face, A.A.’s speak the language of the heart in all its power and simplicity. Alcoholics Anonymous, page xxiv,  with permission of  A.A. World Services, Inc.

Attend our National Convention




Listen to Member Stories





The Promises

If we are painstaking about this phase of our development, we will be amazed before we are half way through. We are going to know a new freedom and a new happiness. We will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it. We will comprehend the word serenity and we will know peace. No matter how far down the scale we have gone, we will see how our experience can benefit others. That feeling of uselessness and self-pity will disappear. We will lose interest in selfish things and gain interest in our fellows. Self-seeking will slip away. Our whole attitude and outlook upon life will change. Fear of people and of economic insecurity will leave us. We will intuitively know how to handle situations which used to baffle us. We will suddenly realize that God is doing for us what we could not do for ourselves.

Are these extravagant promises? We think not. They are being fulfilled among us sometimes quickly, sometimes slowly. They will always materialize if we work for them.

Alcoholics Anonymous, pages 83-84, with permission of A.A. World Services, Inc.





Read Member Stories

"No words can tell of the loneliness and despair I found in that bitter morass of self-pity. Quicksand stretched around me in all directions. I had met my match. I had been overwhelmed. Alcohol was my master."

" We are people who normally would not mix. But there exists among us a fellowship, a friendliness, and an understanding which is indescribably wonderful."




In many communities, loved ones of A.A. members (and of those who need A.A.) meet regularly to exchange experiences and viewpoints on the problems of alcoholism. They are part of what is known as Al-Anon Family Groups. Among these are Alateen groups, for teenagers who have alcoholic parents. Al-Anon is not affiliated with A.A., but its contribution to increased understanding of the A.A. recovery program has been substantial. They believe alcoholism is a family illness and that changed attitudes can aid recovery

Help the Alcoholic



AA Radio Broadcast

Friendly support and cooperation from the media has made it possible for Alcoholics Anonymous to carry its 
message of hope in South Africa and around the world. We know that A.A. would not have reached many thousands of men and women without this assistance. 

Public acceptance of A.A. has grown by leaps and bounds for two principal reasons: the large numbers of recoveries, and reunited homes. Another reason for the wide acceptance of A.A. is the ministration of friends— friends in medicine, religion, and the press, together with innumerable others who have become our able and persistent advocates. Without such support, A.A. would have made only the slowest progress. Alcoholics Anonymous is not a religious organization. Neither does A.A. take any particular medical point of view, though we cooperate widely with the men of medicine as well as with the men of religion. Alcoholics Anonymous, page xx, with permission of A.A. World Services, Inc.


Public Information   

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"No words can tell of the loneliness and despair I found in that bitter morass of self-pity. Quicksand stretched around me in all directions. I had met my match. I had been overwhelmed. Alcohol was my master."

" We are people who normally would not mix. But there exists among us a fellowship, a friendliness, and an understanding which is indescribably wonderful."


Free 3 Hour Webinar on Alcoholism and Working with the Alcoholic

Dates 9th or 10th June 2020 

- Dr Varoshini Nadesan PhD (Social Work), University of Johannesburg, AA Board Member
- Prof Veonna Goliath, Nelson Mandela University
- Kirsten Curtis, AA Board member
- Carel van Wyk, University of Free State
Do you work in the medical field, are you a social worker or a youth worker, are you a religious leader, in your profession do you have to help alcoholics? If so, the above webinar may help you to help others afflicted by the disease of alcoholism.
For more details and to register please click on the link below.

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National Convention 2019

East Rand Area
Dates: 19 to 21 April 2019
Venue: Edenglen High School
Location: Steyn Avenue, Edenglen, Edenvale, Johannesburg

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Listen to Audio Shares Online

A Sound Cloud account has been created and activated for all audio content. We are in the process of uploading archive shares, conventions, rallies. Please visit the site to see what is available.

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AA SA App Available

Download the AASA App from Google Play or App Store to find meetings, events, Regmaker online, listen to member shares...

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Service is Good Survey

A Survey to learn more about Service in Alcoholics Anonymous. Please complete the survey online.

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About AA

What is Alcoholics Anonymous and is AA for me?


AA Meetings

Find out about how an AA meeting works and where you can attend


AA Members

Answers to the most common questions asked by AA Members