Epic Risk Management has aligned with addiction and mental health practitioners Whysup and Teen Tips, an independent provider of mental health training, to create a holistic, fully evaluated, gambling harm education programme.
The self-funded independent programme, designed to reinforce the importance of education, awareness, and prevention surrounding gambling-related harm, will be delivered to students aged 15 to 18 at 200 secondary schools and colleges during the 2021/22 academic year.
“The workshops we deliver to this sector are crucial in educating young people on the damage that gambling and gaming can cause because despite being a vulnerable demographic, most are oblivious to the potential consequences of their actions,” commented Patrick Foster, Epic’s director of the UK and the rest of the world.
“Our work with young people continues to be the most important work that we do, and always will be.”
Furthermore, the programme, which will also cater to parents and teachers, will involve a combination of online webinars and video content, alongside face-to-face delivery
It fuses the delivery of lived experience stories, in partnership with Whysup, for students in school years 10 to 13, Teen Tips online webinars for parents and teachers, online resources and information packs for all secondary school aged children, and access to the Epic information app.
“I am so pleased we are able to contribute to this important and timely project because we have seen first-hand, the devastating impact gambling addiction can have on the lives of young people and their families,” stated Alicia Drummond, founder of Teen Tips.
“It is a problem which often goes unseen until it is causing significant damage, and we believe young people need to be informed about how they might be unwittingly lured into gambling.”
The sessions will be offered to state schools, with the aim of increasing awareness around gambling harm in order to identify and mitigate risks.
It will cover subject areas such as industry practice including advertising, differing product risk profiles, pathways of support and how to identify the signs of harm in yourself and your classmates.
Paul Buck, founder and CEO of Epic Risk Management, explained: “There is an undisputed link between mental health and addiction, so it makes perfect sense for us to provide a rounded offering explaining how the various elements affect one another.
“We are proud to partner with Whysup and Teen Tips to ensure that our education is holistic, covers a wider curriculum and raises awareness of the dangers rather than place all the responsibility at the individual’s door. Our programme will be fully, and independently, evaluated.
“By involving the care providers too – parents, guardians and teachers – we’re helping everyone to recognise the tell-tale signs of addiction or a mental health issue that could lead to problems down the line, allowing treatment or mental health services to be sourced before serious problems arise.”
The sessions will be continuously adapted to incorporate the ever-changing nature of potential threats to young people, including live developments in esports, cryptocurrency trading and gaming issues, such as skins and loot boxes.
Epic will also continue to also work with independent schools on a privately funded basis.