We are a Fellowship of people who have lost the ability to control our drinking and have found ourselves in various kinds of trouble as a result of our drinking. We attempt — most of us successfully — to create a satisfying way of life without alcohol. For this we find we need the help and support of other alcoholics in A.A..

If you repeatedly drink more than you intend or want to, if you get into trouble, or if you have memory lapses when you drink, you may be an alcoholic. It’s a matter of whether your drinking is stopping you from leading the sort of life you want to lead. If you want to control your drinking but can’t, then alcoholism is a definite possibility. But as far as A.A. is concerned whether you’re an alcoholic is for you to decide. It’s not up to anyone in A.A. to tell you whether you are or not.

No, Alcoholics Anonymous is not allied with any sect, denomination, politics, organisation or institution; does not wish to engage in any controversy, neither endorses nor opposes any causes.

The A.A. program is certainly a spiritual one, but what that means is left up to the individual to decide.

Quite a few A.A. meetings are held in church halls but that’s only because they’re convenient and affordable venues.

You are an A.A. member if and when you say you are. The only requirement for A.A. membership is a desire to stop drinking – and many of us were not very wholehearted about that when we first approached 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 and coffee.

Members are free to contribute as much or as little as they wish.

We in A.A. believe there is no such thing as a cure for alcoholism. We can never return to normal drinking, and our ability to stay away from alcohol depends on maintaining our physical, mental, and spiritual health. This we can achieve by going to meetings regularly and putting into practice what we learn there.

In addition, we find it helps us to stay sober if we help other alcoholics.

AA does not:
  • A.A. does not run membership drives to try and persuade alcoholics into joining. A.A. is for alcoholics who want to get sober.
  • A.A. does not check up on its members to see that they don’t drink. It helps alcoholics to help themselves.
  • A.A. is not a religious organisation. All members are free to decide on their own personal ideas.
  • A.A. is not a medical organisation, does not give out medicines or psychiatric advice.
  • A.A. does not run any hospitals, wards or treatment centres or provide nursing services.
  • A.A. is not connected with any other organisation. But A.A. does co-operate with organisations that fight alcoholism. Some members work for such organisations – as individuals – not as representatives of A.A.
  • A.A. does not accept money from sources outside A.A., either private or government.
  • A.A. does not offer any social services, does not provide housing, food, clothing, jobs, or money. It helps alcoholics stay sober, so they earn these things for themselves.
  • Alcoholics Anonymous lives up to the “anonymous” part of its title. It does not want members’ names to be used on TV or radio or in newspapers. Members do not disclose other members’ names to people outside A.A. Members are not ashamed of belonging to A.A.; they must want to encourage more alcoholics to come to A.A. for help. They do not want to make heroes or heroines of themselves simply for taking care of their own sobriety.
  • A.A. does not provide letters of reference to courts, social services, employers etc.

We would recommend you attend an A.A. Meeting or at least contact someone in A.A. and talk to them about your problem.

People come to AA through many different means – choose the path that best suits you.

If you prefer e-mail as a means of contact then feel free to email us at info@aamelbourne.org.au. We have a team of volunteers who have experienced the problems that losing control of your drinking can bring. They will be only too pleased to help.

If you want to speak to someone in your area who has found a solution to the problems they had as a result of their drinking you can call our AA 24 Hour Help Line on 1300 22 22 22, to be put in touch with someone locally.

You may prefer to simply attend an A.A. Meeting. We strongly suggest that when you arrive you let someone know that this is your first meeting, that way they will be able to provide you with information that most people new to AA find useful.


The AA 12 Step Office is a Central Service Office of Alcoholics Anonymous in Australia.

A Central Service Office (CSO) is an AA service office that involves partnership among Groups in a community, just as AA Groups themselves are partnerships of individuals. It is established to carry out certain functions common to all the Groups, functions which are best handled by a centralised
office, and it is usually maintained, supervised and supported by these Groups in their own general interest. It exists to aid the Groups in their common primary purpose of carrying the AA message to the alcoholic who still suffers.



The AA 12 Step Office was founded in October 2010.

The primary purpose of the AA 12 Step Office is to support AA Groups in Melbourne and Victoria to carry the message of recovery to the still suffering alcoholic.

The AA 12 Step Office helps ensure no call to the AA 24 Hour Helpline goes unanswered, provides information and support for the 12th Step work of AA Groups, and sells AA Conference approved literature.

The AA 12 Step Office is 100% volunteer operated, providing members the opportunity to be of service.

Yes, the AA 12 Step Office is an Incorporated Association registered with Consumer Affairs Victoria under the Associations Incorporation Reform Act 2012.

The AA 12 Step Office receives most of its income from A.A. Group contributions. Other income is derived from the 12×12 Club, fundraising events, individual member contributions and literature sales.

Our opening hours are dependent on volunteer availability.

Current Opening Hours

We recommend calling ahead, to ensure the office is manned when you arrive.



An AA meeting may take one of several forms, but at any meeting you will find alcoholics talking about what drinking did to their lives and personalities, what actions they took to help themselves, and how they are living their lives today.

Within our membership may be found men and women of varying age groups and many different social, economic and cultural backgrounds. Some of us drank for many years before coming to the realisation we could not handle alcohol. Others were fortunate enough to appreciate, early in life or in our drinking careers, that alcohol had become unmanageable.

They will be there for the same reason you are. AA does not disclose your identity even to outsiders or even others inside our fellowship. You retain as much anonymity as you wish. That is one of the reasons we call ourselves Alcoholics Anonymous.

We in AA know what it is like to be addicted to alcohol, and to be unable to keep promises made to others and ourselves that we will stop drinking. We are not professional therapists. Our only qualification for helping others to recover from alcoholism is that we have stopped drinking ourselves. We have the ability to help problem drinkers because we are living proof that recovery is possible – we’ve done it.

This varies greatly. In cities, a typical meeting might have 10 to 20 members. Some big meetings might have 50 or more. Some have only a handful. In remote areas some meetings might have only two or three members.

Going to an AA meeting is simple. Find where and when there is a meeting convenient for you on our Meetings List, and turn up. That’s it!

There’s no signing in, no money to pay, no appointment to make.

The meeting will consist of members telling their stories but if anyone isn’t in the mood to talk, it’s fine to decline. You may be invited to speak but it’s quite okay if you don’t want to.

No, it’s not like going to a doctor or a health clinic. AA meetings are very informal. Just take a seat and listen to the stories members will tell about their drinking and their recovery. You can talk to people if you want to or just keep to yourself until you feel more comfortable.


A public liability insurance policy is taken out by the General Service Board, to protect organisers of AA meetings in the event of a claim against them. Most groups would be unable to obtain premises to hold their meetings without evidence of this insurance policy.

Request a Certificate of Currency for your AA Meeting or Group.



Literature published by A.A. World Services, Inc. is a resource for the recovering alcoholic and for anyone who wants to find out about Alcoholics Anonymous, its history and how it works.

General Service Conference approved literature reflects the group conscience of the Fellowship of A.A. and includes the book Alcoholics Anonymous (affectionately known by members as the Big Book); Daily Reflections, a compilation of spiritual reflections contributed by members; books written by one of A.A.’s co-founders (such as Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions and As Bill Sees It); and a wide variety of pamphlets and booklets that deal with the Three Legacies of Alcoholics Anonymous: Recovery, Unity and Service.

A.A. literature can be purchased online from the A.A. Melbourne Literature Store, or over the counter from the AA 12 Step Office at 46 Porter Street, Prahran.

AA Groups also maintain a literature table at their meeting(s) where you may also purchase A.A. literature.

Literature orders placed online at aaliterature.org.au can be paid for by credit card, PayPal, cheque or bank deposit.

Literature purchased over the counter, can be paid for by credit card or cash.

We source all literature from the General Service Office of Alcoholics Anonymous Australia.

If a title you order is out of stock or special order, we will immediately order it from the General Service Office, and send it out to you as soon as it arrives – usually within 2 weeks.

Occassionally, if the General Service Office is also out of stock of the title and awaiting stock from A.A. World Service, Inc. in New York, the delay may be longer. We will contact you if this is the case.


Yes, place your order online at aaliterature.org.au, select “Local Pick Up” as the shipping method, and collect your order from the AA 12 Step Office at 46 Porter Street, Prahran.

Our Service Officers will advise you once your order is ready for collection. 

Definitely. Only Australia Post can deliver to PO Boxes, Locked Bags and Parcel Lockers, so please select the Australia Post shipping method at checkout.

Free shipping is available on all order of $75 or more.

For orders under $75, the postage charge will be displayed during checkout.

Literature orders are shipped via Australia Post or Sendle. Available shipping carriers for your order and delivery location are displayed during checkout.

We aim to process and post your order within 48 hours of receipt of payment.

Please allow a further 5-10 days for delivery by Australia Post, and 3-5 days for delivery by Sendle.