YGAM debuts prevention programme aimed at young ethnic minorities

Young Gamers & Gamblers Education Trust has teamed-up with TalkGen and Red Card Gambling Support Project to launch a programme aimed at safeguarding young people from ethnic minority backgrounds from gambling harms.

The ‘Preventing Gambling Harms in Diverse Communities’ initiative, launched in Greater London and the Home Counties, will deliver free specialist workshops to young people from ethic minority populations aged 14–24, as well as free training to community and faith leaders. 

It is added that content will centre on an understanding of socio-cultural and religious contexts on shame and stigma relating to gambling harms.

Lee Willows, CEO of YGAM, explained: “We’re proud to be part of this purposeful collaboration with lived experience and diversity at its heart. The project builds on the recommendations from the Clearview Research; ‘Gambling: The young BAME perspective’, commissioned by GambleAware in 2019. 

“YGAM will take the lead on the training of community and faith leaders who once trained will deliver the programme to young people. Over the two-year pilot, YGAM will aim to train 323 practitioners, who will in turn reach 18,050 young people in their care. 

“With the talent, specialist insight and commitment from all partner organisations, I am confident that collectively we’ll deliver some helpful perspectives on how to engage with minority communities, contributing to the National Strategy to Reduce Gambling Harms.”

TalkGen and Red Card Gambling Support Project will work collaboratively to maximise synergies and combine resources to create young people facing educational content, using insight from the YGAM and Clearview Research content co-creation sessions. 

The content will include culturally-specific gambling-harm awareness short films that cover different areas in the black and Asian communities, as well as self-help information and age-appropriate signposting material. Over the two-year pilot, 16,600 young people will be reached directly.

Tony Kelly, a former professional footballer and CEO of Red Card Gambling Support Project, he said: “We are pleased to be working with YGAM and TalkGen on this project, as I believe we share the same goals and vision. 

“This initiative is very much needed as gambling addiction within these hard-to-reach communities is something that is still a taboo subject so it is important we break down that barrier of stigma. 

“I hope to use my professional football career and my story to engage our young target audience on this topic. Coming from a Caribbean background myself, I hope many young people from the community will hear my voice as one they can listen and relate to.” 

The programme will seek formal assured status from City & Guilds, and has received funding from the Gambling Commission regulatory settlements and will contribute to the National Strategy to Reduce Gambling Harms, specifically within the prevention and education priority area.

In addition, an advisory group will be established to examine the stigma of gambling harms in these communities. The programme will be recruiting members to this group in the coming weeks.