GambleAware reveals increasing awareness of treatment service

| By Robert Fletcher
British gambling industry charity GambleAware said awareness for the National Gambling Treatment Service (NGTS) continues to grow, following a series of recent campaigns by the organisation.

GambleAware in spring last year launched the NGTS awareness campaign, with four bursts of media targeting men and one for women. The project ran across newspapers, magazine, out-of-home advertising, radio and online, with the aim of reaching high-risk gamblers experiencing significant harms.

Major figures from the initiative included that by August 2021, 60% of high-risk gamblers reached through the campaign would contact NGTS as a first step if they had concerns about their gambling, up from 47% in May 2020.

GambleAware also found that high-risk gamblers were gambling more as a result of the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic, with this rising from 24% in May 2020 to 38% in August 2021.

As such, calls and online chats to the NGTS National Gambling Helpline were up 41% over the 12-month period between March 2019 and March 2021.

There was a notable rise in the number of high-risk male gamblers attempting to change their gambling behaviour, with 34% in August 2021 saying they used the NGTS or National Gambling Helpline. Some 33% of those not yet attempting to change their behaviour said they would be likely to contact the service if they did.

In terms of wider awareness, GambleAware said campaign recognition continued to grow wave-on-wave, reaching 74% amongst high-risk male gamblers in August 2021 and 79% amongst affected others.

Further analysis from Ipsos Mori found total awareness of NGTS now stands at 40% of all high-risk male gamblers and 50% of the important audience of affected others.

GambleAware also noted that the campaign was upweighted in London and the Midlands after previous research revealed these regions had higher rates of high-risk gamblers. This additional activity resulted in 40% of all male gamblers aged 16-44 in London saying they would contact the NGTS or National Gambling Helpline, compared to 31% across all Great Britain.

“The National Gambling Treatment Service brings together a network of organisations across Great Britain that provides free confidential treatment and support for anyone experiencing gambling harms,” GambleAware chief executive Zoë Osmond said.

“It is heartening to see that this campaign is helping to signpost more people to treatment for gambling harms, and also working to drive greater awareness of the provision of treatment services.”

GambleAware will continue to monitor the awareness of the NGTS and the impact of the campaign, with the results be integrated into its ongoing Annual GB Treatment and Support Survey.

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