Our Mission

NACoA’s mission is to eliminate the adverse impact of alcohol and drug us on children and families.

coa is drawing a spaceship on the wall with a dog next to him

About NACoA

Using our network of the most respected experts in the field, we provide solutions to address these impacts effectively. NACoA envisions a world in which no child who struggles because of family addiction will be left unsupported.

If you are dealing with a parent who abuses alcohol or drugs — or have a relative or friend who does — we’re here to help. NACoA offers resources for everyone, including providing support for professionals with tools and training in order to better support individuals in pain due to alcohol and drug dependency in their families. We offer a variety of programs and products uniquely designed to offer support and assist you at home or in the workplace.

NACoA is the only national membership organization focusing on the children of parents struggling with alcohol or substance abuse. Additionally, we are working internationally through affiliates in Great Britain, Germany, Poland, New Zealand, and Brazil.

Nacoa About

1 in 4 children under the age of 18 years

are touched by the adverse effects of a parent abusing alcohol or drugs. We are the voice for these children, and have been for over 30 years. We are fueled by a deep and abiding passion to break the silence for millions of families entrapped by the "no talk" rule. We work to ensure that they can find their own voice, and by sharing their experiences find the hope and healing they deserve.

To Accomplish Our Mission,
We've Built NACoA As A

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501(c)(3) Membership Organization

A 501(c)(3) membership organization which includes national, regional, and international affiliate groups and cooperative relationships with partner organizations

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National Center for Advocacy

A national center for information, education, and advocacy for Children of Addiction (COAs) of all ages, providing the latest research information through culturally and linguistically sensitive materials

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Policy & Program Development Center

A policy and program development center that obtains input from expert scientists, opinion leaders, policy makers, practitioners, and leaders in systems that impact children's lives

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Central Point for Children's Welfare

A central point of input for children’s health and welfare advocates and service providers who address populations of COAs

Who We Are

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Volunteers

We are youth workers, coaches, volunteers, grandparents, and neighbors who wanted to help a hurting child we cared about and came to NACoA for guidance because we didn’t know what to do. NACoA helped us and now we are giving back to help others.

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Professionals

We are concerned professionals—doctors, social workers, attorneys, teachers, family counselors, early childhood professionals, developmental psychologists, clergy, and pastoral counselors—who see the painful consequences of growing up with an alcoholic or drug dependent parent.

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Adults

We are adult children of alcoholic parents who struggled in silence to make sense of what was irrational, unpredictable and frightening for too many days of our childhood, and we want it to be better for today’s and tomorrow’s children.

Nacoa Volunteers

Students

We are college students and other young adults who have realized that keeping silent all our growing up years didn’t fix anything at home, and we want to help break the silence and reach thousands of others through social media to have a little more hope and safety than we had.

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Our Affiliates

A diverse group of professionals and volunteers committed to bringing healing to children and families with addiction, our affiliates are NACoA’s eyes, ears, and heart. Click below to learn more about our affiliates, including how you too can bring hope to children around the country and globe.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Click on the questions below to find the answers you need.

NACoA programs and materials are based on solid science and are effective. They provide the needed tools and education to those who are in contact with children on a daily basis — teachers, physicians, social workers, faith communities, court personnel. They also provide information and supportive material directly to children and families who are struggling with the impact of addiction. As a result, they reduce the number of children whose lives are disrupted by a family member’s alcohol or drug use, and they promote resilience in the children who are impacted.

NACoA’s extensive experience and its authoritative advisors guide the ongoing quality and effectiveness of its programs.

NACoA-developed programs and materials bring great relief to children when they come to understand their parent’s illness and that the problems in the family are not their fault.

The programs free them to develop more normally and devote their attention to being children instead of maintaining a focus on coping with the chronic stress in the family.

Children who attend these programs are known to improve their school attendance and school performance and experience an improvement in the quality of their lives.

This problem touches just about everyone in one way or another. In your neighborhood or among your children’s friends, one in four may be hiding their embarrassment, confusion, hurt or shame about what’s going on at home.

If your question isn’t answered here, or elsewhere in the website, please contact us.