Awareness of the National Gambling Treatment Service (NGTS) continues to grow, following awareness-raising campaigns led by the charity GambleAware, targeted primarily at high-risk male gamblers (PGSI 8+).
The campaign is well-targeted, with the impact highest amongst its core target audience of high-risk male gamblers (PGSI 8+) and ‘affected others’ (partners, family and friends negatively affected by the gambling of others).
Campaign recognition continues to grow wave on wave, reaching 74% amongst high-risk male gamblers in August 2021, and 79% amongst affected others. Increasing numbers of high-risk gamblers agree that they would contact NGTS as a first step if they had concerns about their gambling – 60% in August 2021, up from 47% in May 2020.
This is against a background of increasing demand for help and support – with calls (and online chats) to the National Gambling Treatment Service’s National Gambling Helpline up 41% in the past 2 years (year to 31 March 2021 versus year to 31 March 2019).
The latest campaign was upweighted in London and the Midlands after 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 be likely contact the NGTS, or the National Gambling Helpline, should they need support for gambling-related problems, compared to 31% across all Great Britain.
Insights from the Annual Great Britain Treatment and Support Survey found there was a need for more awareness of the support available to motivate people to seek treatment. The National Gambling Treatment Service campaign was designed to promote self-referrals amongst high-risk gamblers by directing them to the National Gambling Helpline, live chat, and online support available via BeGambleAware.org.
The need for the service has never been higher and it continues to be important to build awareness, with growing numbers of high-risk gamblers saying they were gambling more because of the pandemic – 38% in August 2021, up from 24% in May 2020).
Zoë Osmond, CEO of GambleAware said: “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.
“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.”
The national campaign has been predominantly aimed at high-risk male gamblers, who already experience significant harms from gambling, across four bursts of activity, with an additional burst targeted specifically at high-risk female gamblers. Campaign materials have appeared in newspapers, magazines, on the radio, online and in out-of-home settings across Great Britain.
GambleAware will continue to monitor the awareness of the National Gambling Treatment Service and the impact of the campaign. From November 2021 measurement of this will be integrated into GambleAware’s ongoing Annual GB Treatment and Support Survey.