Problem gambling support and treatment charity GamCare has announced that it will expand its ‘Youth Outreach Programme’ across the UK, having secured additional funding for two-years.
GamCare has operated its Youth Outreach Programme since 2017, which has seen the charity develop educational ‘youth hubs’ across five UK regions.
Targeting young people aged between 11-19, the youth hubs have been developed to help local outreach workers and community stakeholders identify youths at risk of problem gambling.
Following a successful evaluation of the programme’s work to date, GamCare confirms that it will expand its youth hubs directive from five to eight regions.
Updating stakeholders, Anna Hemmings CEO at GamCare, details “Our risk reduction programmes provide targeted engagement and support for groups at higher risk of harms because of gambling. We are proud of the good work we’ve been able to do, and we are happy to be able to expand our work with young people to help to minimise the impacts of gambling-related harms felt by individuals, families and communities in years to come.”
Moving forward, GamCare confirms that youth outreach will form a key mandate in the development of its NHS co-funded Northern Problem Gambling Clinic, which will open in the city of Leeds later this year.
In addition, GamCare details that funding has been provided to develop tailored outreach and intervention programmes for young UK adults aged 18-24.
Megan Pengelly, GamCare Risk Reduction Programmes Manager, says: “Our Youth Outreach Programme has reached more than 7,500 young people so far, as well as a further 2,000 professionals working to support them, such as teachers, youth workers and third sector representatives. The programme provides a vital opportunity to help young people build their knowledge, resilience and critical thinking skills around gambling, and creates a network of professionals who are engaged and understand how to support them should they need it. We are excited about the impact we can make through the expansion of our programme.”
Information related to all GamCare’s youth directives can be found at www.bigdeal.org.uk, a dedicated portal for young people, parents, industry and healthcare professionals.