GambleAware progresses National Gambling Treatment Service campaign

GambleAware has debuted the next phase of its campaign to promote awareness of the National Gambling Treatment Service, which will see advertising run on radio, digital platforms and in regional press throughout January.

The National Gambling Treatment Service, which works with, and alongside, the National Health Service, seeks to promote self-referrals amongst those who are at high risk of, or are currently experiencing, gambling disorder by directing them to the National Gambling Helpline and online support.

Research commissioned by GambleAware, which examined the impacts of COVID-19 on gamblers, found that those with a higher Problem Gambling Severity Index score were more likely to increase their gambling between March and May 2020.

GambleAware underscored the importance of securing high coverage during the first half of this year, with the charity emphasising that this is vital to the campaign’s engagement among audiences. 

It comes at a time when the National Gambling Treatment Service is striving to avoid a reduction in appointments with mental health professionals and face-to-face meetings during national lockdown.

Backed by data which supports its ‘targeting phase’, GambleAware will also promote its new ‘Start to Regain Control’ campaign across regions which are estimated to have the highest concentration of players which are at ‘very high risk’ of gambling harm – including London, as well as the East and West Midlands.

The charity says that previous campaign activity to build awareness has proved successful, with tracking research data showing an increase in awareness and likeliness to contact the National Gambling Helpline going from 13 per cent to 23 per cent.

Zoe Osmond, GambleAware communications and engagement director, explained: “So far the campaign has proven to be successful in encouraging people to contact the National Gambling Treatment Service for support, but there is still more to be done. 

“During the pandemic and this extremely difficult time for people, it is vital that we continue to ensure those in need of help understand what services are available to them, which is why we are taking this targeted approach to help reach those high risk areas across Great Britain.”

The National Gambling Treatment Service campaign is titled: ‘Start to regain control’ and focuses on the nature of gambling with the inclusion of the line “when you’re there, but not there”.  

The content draws upon the insight that people with gambling problems feel disconnected from their family and friends, and is based on promoting confidence that treatment is easy to access and will help them overcome their struggles with gambling.