What Do AA Chips Mean? Why Do They Give Medallions In Alcoholics Anonymous?

Posted by John Gall on

You may have heard the term AA Chips or AA Medallions and wonder what the heck a person is referring to?  While not a direct part of the AA Program AA Chips or Medallions are coins given as a gift to commemorate or recognize various lengths of sobriety.  Other recovery programs like NA or CA also give sobriety chips to their members.  Being more of a cultural norm you'll find the use of AA Chips will vary from meeting to meeting.  Some give plastic poker chip type chips, some give colorful aluminum medallions and some stick with traditional bronze medallions.  

AA ChipAA Medallion Back Serenity Prayer

Some groups give no chips at all.  As I mentioned its not a direct part of the AA program its a tradition or cultural item so there is no real standard.  But there are common themes to these sobriety coins.  Most often you'll see them in 24 Hours or Month 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 and 18.  Commonly groups recognize Month 1 3 6 9 then give a 1 year coin and a 18 month coin.  Then annually a person gets a chip to recognize additional years of sobriety.

You'll find AA chips given as well by friends , family and AA members to members and sponsors to sponsees.  Often these are higher end gold plated or colored or even crystal coated AA medallions.

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