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Nar-Anon, known officially as "Nar-Anon Family Groups", is a twelve-step program for friends and family members of those who are affected by someone else's addiction. Nar-Anon is complementary to, but separate from, Narcotics Anonymous (NA), analogous to Al-Anon with respect to Alcoholics Anonymous; Nar-Anon's traditions state that it should "always cooperate with Narcotics Anonymous."

Nar-Anon was co-founded by Alma B. and Louise S. in Studio City, California, but their attempt to launch the program failed.[1] The organization was revived in 1968 in the Palos Verdes Peninsula by Louise S. and others.[2] Nar-Anon filed Articles of Incorporation in 1971, and in 1986 established the Nar-Anon World Service Office (WSO) in San Pedro, California.[1] In 2006, Nar-Anon began holding biennial World Service Conferences, attended by delegates from each region, to approve literature and policies for Nar-Anon as a whole. Nar-Anon also offers the Narateen program, which is designed for teenage members of the Nar-Anon fellowship.[3]


The structure is described in detail in the Guide to Local Services and the Guide to World Services (see external links). Members join a group, which meets on a regular weekly or monthly schedule, and is formed with other members who live nearby and are similarly recovering from the problems of addiction in a relative or a friend. The primary activity of the group is to provide a safe place for members to talk about their recovery, and to support one another. A group chooses service volunteers from its members to run the group—nobody runs the group as a professional. At the top of the service structure, control of Nar-Anon begins with the groups, each of which may elect a Group Service Representative (GSR). The GSRs may meet with other GSRs in an Area formed by several nearby groups, to vote and organize Nar-Anon activities within the Area. The same GSRs also meet within a larger Region, formed by several Areas, in an Assembly, to vote and organize Nar-Anon activities at the Regional Service level. The Regional Service Assembly may elect a Delegate along with an Alternate Delegate, to attend the biennial World Service Conference with other Delegates. At the World Service Conference, Nar-Anon literature and Nar-Anon policies for all of Nar-Anon world-wide are approved, and one-third of the Board of Trustees is elected (two-thirds is elected by the Board of Trustees itself). Some countries may also have a National Service level below the Regional Service level. Committees and sub-committees to handle affairs between meetings of the voting bodies are appointed at each level.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Schach, Jean Marie (1987). Impact of Nar-Anon Family Support Group upon family members of heroin addicts (M.S.W. thesis). California State University, Sacramento. OCLC 18126672.
  2. ^ Bumbalo, JA; Young, DE (1973). "The self-help phenomenon". The American Journal of Nursing. 73 (9): 1588–91. doi:10.2307/3422630. JSTOR 3422630. PMID 4489849.
  3. ^ "Teen Newcomers — Nar-Anon Family Groups". Nar-Anon Family Group Headquarters, Inc. Retrieved 8 January 2017.

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