SAA Mission Statement

The Social  Anxiety Association (SAA), a non-profit organization, was officially organized in 1997 to meet the growing needs of people throughout the world who have social phobia/social anxiety.

Social anxiety disorder is a relatively new classification in the DSM, the psychiatric diagnostic and statistical manual of the American Psychiatric Association, appearing for the first time in the early 1980's, and then more specifically defined in the 1987 version. Social anxiety is still nowhere near a "household" word --and it is a "problem area" not taught in many graduate schools of psychology. Thus, not only is the public ignorant of this major anxiety disorder, the vast majority of professional therapists are not aware of it either.

We find it both ironic and sad that there are non-profit organizations for all types of medical and mental health care problems, yet there is little or no information on social anxiety, particularly because, according to the latest U.S. epidemiological data...


You read that correctly.

Social anxiety is not only the largest anxiety disorder, it is the third largest mental health care problem -- all alone, by itself. Most people with social anxiety feel they are like voices crying out in the wilderness -- and there's no one out there anywhere to hear them. This problem is one of the major purposes for the formation of the Social Anxiety Association.

Thus, the major goals of the Social Anxiety Association are to:

  1. 1. encourage public awareness of social anxiety and effective treatment options;
  2. 2. facilitate the appropriate use and increase the number of therapeutic groups to help people overcome social anxiety;
  3. 3. serve as a resource and information center for matters related to social anxiety;
  4. 4. hold meetings for those interested in social anxiety, as membership dictates.


Membership in the SAA shall be open to anyone interested in social anxiety disorder and in cooperation to help, encourage, and support others.

Applicants for membership of the Association shall submit a membership application.  A Membership Committee, elected by a simple vote of the Board of Directors, shall review applications for membership and refer applicants for confirmation to the Board of Directors.
The SAA is primarily an educational and informational group, and membership does not confer any professional status.  Members may not use their membership in the Social Anxiety Association to infer any kind of professional status.


The Association may engage in the publication of newsletters and similar matter related to its goals and purposes. 
Website Information:
As membership and finances allow, the board of directors may wish to continually expand upon its website, consistent with the goal of reaching as many people as possible to inform them about social anxiety disorder.
Please Note: The SAA has been re-titled from its original name "The Social Phobia/Social Anxiety Association".  The SAA has no employees and no revenue.
We would appreciate any donations, grants, or contributions in any form to further the educational and treatment goals of the Association.

We would like to thank Ms. Debbie Barton for her help in initiating the SP/SAA

Citations and references for articles and information

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The Social Anxiety Association

The Social Anxiety Association is a non-profit organization founded in 1997 to meet the growing needs of people with social anxiety.  The SAA became inactive for several years due to lack of resources.  We are in the process of re-doing our website, listing all active, structured CBT groups for social anxiety, and renewing all our licenses.  Major changes will be happening by the end of 2013.  We publish new web content -- concerning social anxiety -- almost daily on the site now.

The Social Anxiety Institute is the largest website on the internet about social anxiety disorder (social phobia). Therapy programs have run at the Institute full-time since 1994.  Major new help for overcoming social anxiety is under development and will be introduced in 2013. 

For treatment: Overcoming social anxiety: Step by Step   A structured guide to overcoming social anxiety (a "How to" guide to get over social anxiety).

The Anxiety Network explains and describes five major anxiety disorders.

Guidelines for listing social anxiety groups on this site.  We cannot officially endorse groups, so check them out thoroughly.  We ask that they be groups that are operating, have a definite leader, and are thoroughly structured.  Social anxiety therapy groups are very different than the groups that operate for other mental health conditions.