GambleAware has published its five-year organisational strategy, underpinned by four key objectives linked to awareness, inequalities, service capacity and access, which will guide a long-term vision of a society safe from gambling harms.
These objectives include developing awareness and understanding of gambling harms; increasing access to services and reducing inequalities; building capacity among health and community services to respond better to gambling harms; and improving the coherence, accessibility, diversity, and effectiveness of the National Gambling Treatment Service.
Kate Lampard CBE, chair of trustees, explained: “Our vision is a society where everyone is protected from gambling harms, and that a greater proportion of those with gambling disorder will receive the right treatment with sustained recovery at rates comparable to other addictions and behavioural problems.
“To help make this a reality, it is essential to ensure gambling harms are clearly understood. It is also vital that the mechanisms for effective prevention are in place, and those who are experiencing harms are able to access the advice, support and treatment they need.”
The charity says that financial commitments from the industry has enabled it to take a longer-term integrated and strategic approach to addressing gambling harms, which includes collaboration with the government, NHS, public health agencies, local authorities, and voluntary sector organisations.
This approach, says GambleAware, is aimed at the delivery of a programme of work that demonstrates leadership in establishing, developing, and maintaining a coordinated network of services.
GambleAware’s strategy also lists more than 40 programmes, across research, evaluation, education, and treatment to achieve its aforementioned ambitions.
These include delivering improvements to the National Gambling Treatment Service; collaborating with providers to establish clear treatment pathways; the co-commissioning of place-based hubs; training programmes for faith leaders and debt advisors; new youth education hubs; a targeted women’s prevention campaign; and research programmes to build knowledge of the lived experiences of gambling harms amongst women and minority communities.
Zoë Osmond, CEO of GambleAware, explained: “Following a detailed consultation, it is clear that GambleAware and other organisations need to work together to achieve a society that is safe from gambling harms.
“Thanks to greater certainty in funding, we are now able to develop and implement longer-term commissioning plans to work towards a society where fewer people experience gambling harms and ensure that those who do, receive timely and effective support.
“Over the next five years, we will work to build the accessibility and effectiveness of the National Gambling Treatment Service and ensure it is recognised as a strong coalition of treatment services and prevention activities, delivered in collaboration with the NHS and others.
“By 2026, we hope to have made significant progress towards our vision, but also want to ensure that these programmes will continue to be sustained beyond the five-year term of this strategy.”