Twelve Concepts of Service

The Twelve Steps and Traditions are guides for personal growth and group unity. The Twelve Concepts are guides for service. They show how Twelve Step work can be done on a broad scale and how members of a World Service Offie can relate to each other and to the groups, through a World Service Conference, to spread Al-Anon's message worldwide.

Carrying the message, as suggested in the Twelfth Step, is Service, Al-Anon's third legacy. Service, a vital purpose of Al-Anon, is action. Members strive to do as well as to be. Anything done to help a relative or friend of an alcoholic is service: a telephone call to a despairing member or sponsoring a newcomer, telling one's story at meetings, forming groups, arranging for public outreach, distributing literature, and financially supporting groups, local services, and the World Service Office. [from Al-Anon Alateen Service Manual 2010-2013, p.19]

  1. The ultimate responsibility and authority for Al-Anon world services belongs to the Al-Anon groups.
  2. The Al-Anon Family Groups have delegated complete administrative and operational authority to their Conference and its service arms.
  3. The Right of Decision makes effective leadership possible.
  4. Participation is the key to harmony.
  5. The Rights of Appeal and Petition protect minorities and assure that they be heard.
  6. The Conference acknowledges the primary administrative responsibility of the trustees.
  7. The Trustees have legal rights while the rights of the Conference are traditional.
  8. The Board of Trustees delegates full authority for routine management of the Al-Anon Headquarters to its executive committees.
  9. Good personal leadership at all service levels is a necessity. In the field of world service the Board of Trustees assumes the primary leadership.
  10. Service responsibility is balanced by carefully defined service authority and double-headed management is avoided.
  11. The World Service Office is composed of standing committees, executives and staff members.
  12. The spiritual foundation for Al-Anon's world services is contained in the General Warranties of the Conference, Article 12 of the Charter.


General Warranties

In all its proceedings the World Service Conference of Al-Anon shall observe the spirit of the Traditions:

  1. that only sufficient operating funds, including an ample reserve, be its prudent financial principle;
  2. that no Conference member shall be placed in unqualified authority over other members;
  3. that all decisions be reached by discussion, vote, and whenever possible, by unanimity;
  4. that no Conference action ever be personally punitive or an incitement to public controversy;
  5. that though the Conference serves Al-Anon, it shall never perform any act of government; and that, like the fellowship of Al-Anon Family Groups which it serves, it shall always remain democratic in thought and action.