The UK national online self-exclusion scheme, GAMSTOP, announced a new initiative that seeks to help students affected by gambling harm.
The Gambling Support University Tour Will Help Students in the UK
GAMSTOP unveiled Tuesday that it joined forces with RecoverMe, a mobile health application that helps people affected by gambling addiction as well as the award-winning education charity, YGAM. The trio created an initiative called “The Gambling Support University Tour.” The innovative initiative seeks to visit dozens of British universities where representatives of the three organizations will organize meetings and distribute leaflets, raising awareness of gambling harm and support services available.
Besides speaking to students, the trio will also collaborate with universities’ staff and provide much-needed training. The training organized by YGAM will be free for university staff, as well as student union officers and will seek to build strong knowledge about gambling harm and identifying problem-gambling behaviors. At the same time, YGAM will be promoting its website Student Hub, which offers invaluable information and advice for students.
Leading colleges and institutions such as the ones in Northumbria, Central Lancashire, Worcester, Sheffield and Bournemouth among others have agreed to participate in the tour. In addition, the Scottish Gambling Education network will also visit 18 universities around Scotland as a part of a similar program.
The Initiative Will Raise Awareness, Provide Support
Fiona Palmer, GAMSTOP’s CEO, acknowledged that The Gambling Support University tour is an important event that delivers unique information for different organizations. She explained that gambling harm isn’t a popular topic on university campuses. However, Palmer stressed that this initiative brings unique support and information for problem gambling, while at the same time promoting self-exclusion for students, which is a significantly important tool.
“Gambling-related harm on our campuses is a subject that is rarely addressed, but for any students experiencing problems with their gambling, self-exclusion is one of the most important tools available, giving them valuable breathing space whilst they seek additional help.“
Fiona Palmer, CEO of GAMSTOP
GAMSTOP acknowledged the results of a study among 2,000 students across the UK conducted by Censuswide, commissioned by YGAM and GAMSTOP. The study found that 80% of the respondents in the study gambled, while 41% admitted that gambling impacted their university experience negatively. Those that were affected negatively admitted to missing deadlines, social activities as well as lectures.
“The popularity of the tour so far shows us that gambling harms is clearly an issue that universities are more conscious of.“
Daniel Bliss, director of external affairs at YGAM
YGAM’s director of external affairs, Daniel Bliss, added that the tour enjoyed strong popularity which helps raise awareness of gambling harms. Besides supporting students affected by gambling harm, he explained that universities also assist by supporting students affected by alcohol or drugs. In conclusion, Bliss added: “We believe gambling should be given the same level of focus and this tour is helping to increase awareness and understanding.”