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Related to self-help group: SHGS
self-help group,nonprofessional organization formed by people with a common problem or situation, for the purpose of pooling resources, gathering information, and offering mutual support, services, or care. Self-help groups began to spread in the United States following World War II and proliferated rapidly in the 1960s and 70s. Among these groups are such organizations as Alcoholics AnonymousAlcoholics Anonymous
(AA), worldwide organization dedicated to the treatment of alcoholics; founded 1935 by two alcoholics, one a New York broker, the other an Ohio physician. They developed a 12-step program that has made coping with alcoholism possible for countless people.
..... Click the link for more information. and those for the victims and families of victims of specific diseases, child abuse, suicide, and crime. Groups concerned with a shared situation include those for the elderly, single parents, and homosexuals. The definition of such groups sometimes includes social-advocacy organizations and halfway services (e.g., drug rehabilitation centers). Although self-help groups may draw on, or offer a bridge to, professional assistance, free services are usually provided by the members themselves through meetings, publications, the Internet, and individual contacts.