If you have an issue with alcohol you don't need to suffer alone. There are people in the Greater Vancouver area that are willing to help! Feel free to speak with a sober member of Alcoholics Anonymous in Greater Vancouver, BC. You can call them at 604.434.3933.
Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) is a place where men and women go to share their experience with alcohol. They also discuss their hopes and strength that may help solve their common problem with alcohol and help each other recover. The only requirement to join the group is the desire to stop drinking. There are no fees or dues to become a member of A.A; they are self-supporting through their own contributions. Alcoholics Anonymous is not affiliated with any sect, politics, denomination, institution, or organization. A.A. does not want to engage in controversy and does not want to endorse or oppose any causes. The main philosophy of A.A. is to stay sober and help others achieve sobriety.
First of all the Intergroup area comprises of Burnaby, Coquitlam, Delta, Ladner, Maple Ridge, New Westminster, North Vancouver, Pitt Meadows, Port Coquitlam, Port Moody, Richmond, Surrey, Tsawwassen, Vancouver, West Vancouver and White Rock. Each week there are in excess of 600 regular meetings within these cities and over 200 of these meetings are in the city of Vancouver itself!
Most of the meetings happen on a regular basis, at the same time and place every week. Most of the A.A. meetings are around a hour long and usually occur in the evenings. There are also some meetings that occur at other times of the day. Therefore those who live in the area don't have to wait long for a meeting and this is very fortunate.
A complete schedule of A.A. meetings is published twice a year in the Meeting Directory by the Intergroup Office. This schedule is maintained by the Intergroup Office. There are changes to the meetings from time to time and they are published monthmikly on the A.A. Newsletter that is available at the A.A. meetings. If anyone wants to enquire about meetings (time, location, etc.), or to verify the meeting information given in the Directory shoudl call the Intergroup Office at 604.434.3933. Staff and volunteers are available to handle calls between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 2:00 a.m. (Weekdays) or 9:30 a.m. and 2:00 a.m. (Weekends and Holidays).
The basic requirement to become an A.A. member is the desire to stop drinking. Therefore majority of the AA meetings are open however, some of the meetings are "Closed" and are intended specifically for A.A. members and people with drinking problems. There are also some meetings that are intended for just men, women, gay people or particular language groups and are listed accordingly in the Meeting Directory.
The size of the meetings varies. Some meetings can be in a hall with over 200 people, but majority of the meetings have between 15 to 50 people. In some of the small meetings people sometimes sit around a table or in comfy chairs. Other times with larger groups they meet in a hall or a larger building.
Step & Tradition Meetings: The 12-Steps and/or the 12-Traditions of Alcoholics Anonymous are stuided in these meetings. These meetings are sometimes referred to as the 12x12 meetings. Usually what happens is a step is read at the meeting and the members discuss what this step means to them and how they live their lives around this step and experience from it.
Big Book Study: These meetings are meant to continue the study of the book "Alcoholics Anonymous", which is referred to by many as the "Big Book". What happens is that members read sections of this book and then they reflect upon it and discuss with the other members of the meeting.
Beginners Meetings: These meetings are focuses more on the newcomers to the group. The topics discussed are the basics and help the newcomers feel welcome to the meetings. Often a regular A.A. meeting follows a Beginners Meeting.
Speaker Meetings: At the speaker meetings one or two A.A. members are invited to share their stories with the rest of the group. What it was like to be an alcoholic, how they came to realize they needed help, and how their lives are doing now. Usually these speakers are arranged in advance.
Meetings are held in a variety of locations. Some times access to the meetings can be through doors at the side and back of the buildings. This information is given in the Meeting Directory. If you can't get in the building through the main door look for people near an entrance or for signs and you should find where to enter for the meetings.
Many of the meetings are held in church halls and meeting rooms. The meetings in the church halls are made not because of any religious connections but just because many churches rent rooms to community organizations. Numerous meetings are held in "Clubs" (often called Alano or Recovery Clubs or Fellowship Houses), which are not affiliated with A.A. but are used by A.A. members. Meetings are also held in Hospitals, Resource Centers, treatment facilities, etc. There are also lunch and breakfast meetings at times where a section is reserved and may require a minimum meal purchase.