Ricky Hanson in A Year of the Inner Sunset,
Ricky Hanson, one of the Center’s founders, says, “I know what our mission says, and it doesn’t say anything about A.A.”
Though the A.A. model of support is central to the location’s work, the Gratitude Center also takes a broader approach. The organizers hope to allow any individual to receive whatever kind of services they might require, while also providing community connections through gallery shows and other events.
Hanson highlights the Center’s overall atmosphere as being a more welcoming environment than some of the other A.A. centers throughout the city. He credits much of the Center’s success over the past year to its ability to attract many of those for whom a feeling of safety and community is paramount.
Adding to this appeal, Hanson believes, is the site’s non-denominational presentation. Though still adhering to the “god”-based principals of A.A., Hanson says that the site’s lack of explicit religious iconography is intentional.