Secular Organizations for Sobriety

What is Secular Organizations for Sobriety?

Secular Organizations for Sobriety (SOS) is the world’s oldest non-profit network of autonomous, twelve-step alternative substance abuse recovery groups. As non-professional local groups, SOS is purely dedicated to helping individuals achieve sobriety and maintain abstinence from all forms of substance abuse, whether this be alcohol abuse, drug addiction, food addiction, or more.

Because it is a non-externally funded support group, SOS is primarily kept running from outside donations. However, this allows the organization to be able to provide free-of-charge recovery care, further supporting the SOS goal to promote sobriety and enable substance-free living for anyone who needs it.


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A Brief History of SOS

The Secular Organizations for Sobriety organization was founded by a man named James Christopher, in response to his own unsuccessful experience following the spiritual principles of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) in becoming sober. With a disinterest in the idea of relinquishing his addiction to the control of a Higher Power, this traditional recovery approach simply just did not work for him.

Thus, starting in 1985, James began writing about his frustrations with the limited support available for addiction recovery, sharing his beliefs that there should be more secular and self-help based sobriety support programs.

In response to this, James received an overwhelming amount of supportive feedback from individuals who had struggled with these same experiences. Thus, in November of 1986, the first SOS meeting was held in North Hollywood, California. Today, these meetings are now held in various locations and formats throughout the nation.

What is a Non-12 Step Rehab?

When it comes to achieving sobriety, there are several other recovery options individuals can explore that deviate from more traditional twelve-step recovery programs (such as Alcoholics Anonymous).

These are referred to as non 12-step rehabilitative programs and are primarily characterized by their avoidance of viewing addiction as something that cannot be controlled. Rather, they promote the power of individual choice and strength of character in overcoming substance abuse.

For those who do not want to rely on a Higher Power to achieve sobriety, considering a non 12-step recovery option may be worthwhile. Currently, SOS is the largest alternative secular organization for addiction recovery and has helped countless thousands of people become clean and sober individuals.

The SOS Goal

As a recovery program, SOS is dedicated to helping participants achieve and maintain sobriety. This is done by encouraging individuals to practice complete abstinence from drugs and/or alcohol, no matter what circumstances life may throw their way.

Secular Organizations for Sobriety maintains the belief that, through helping individuals establish a sobriety priority, lifelong recovery from their substance abuse problems is achievable.

Attending an SOS Meeting

Dedicated to providing addiction recovery support to as many individuals as possible, SOS meetings are available in various formats, including in-person and online meetings.

When participating in an SOS group, these meetings will usually involve peer support activities, and engaging in kinds of literature that discuss how to achieve and effectively continue to practice sobriety (many of which are written and provided by James Christopher, himself).

Furthermore, these meetings may provide individuals with other resources, such as educational materials on substance abuse. For more information on the times and dates of upcoming virtual SOS meetings, or about SOS meeting locations near you, click here.

Attending an SOS Meeting

Other Addiction Recovery Groups

For individuals who feel that SOS may not be the best fit, there are several other drug and alcohol recovery support groups available that may better meet their personal care needs. Some of these include organizations that were developed using the SOS philosophy, including:

Of course, there are also organizations that are not affiliated with SOS or its founding principles, such as:


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Finding the Right Treatment Options for You

If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction and are ready to start seeking out substance abuse treatment options, know that you are not alone, and help IS available. Here at Find Addiction Rehabs, we understand that finding addiction support and resources can be a difficult process.

That is why our hotline is available 24/7 so that one of our representatives is available at all times to help connect you with top-notch rehab facilities and recovery programs, whenever you need it.

Taking the first step to recovery can be a tough choice to make for many people, but it is the right one. So make that choice, and call today so that we can help you get started on the road to recovery, and finally achieve a happier, healthier, and successfully sober you!



About the Author:

Nicole R. is an experienced writer with an interest in the fields of Anthropology, English, and behavioral health, and has written countless articles for newspaper publications, institutional research journals, and the Find Addiction Rehabs blog. She hopes to spread awareness of and combat the stigmatization surrounding addiction and substance abuse treatment through her writing and work.

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