Families the focus of Gambling Harm Awareness Week

Families are the focus of the first-ever Gambling Harm Awareness Week, Associate Minister of Health Hon Peter Dunne said today.

The week aims to draw attention to the harmful effects that gambling can have and how people can get help.

“The theme of the week is Family Time – Time Together can beat gambling harm.

“It encourages New Zealanders to spend time with their family this week instead of gambling.

“While gambling is a popular form of entertainment, it can have unwanted consequences that affect people’s health, relationships, finances, employment and that of their families, whānau and community.

“New Zealand’s gambling harm services, including face-to-face counselling services and the Gambling Helpline are available to help people in need free of charge. But friends, families and whānau also have a role to play. Whether it’s going for a walk, sharing kai, playing sport or taking part in cultural activities, we can all make a huge difference,” says Mr Dunne.

Coming up with ideas is as easy as visiting the Choice Not Chance website (www.Choicenotchance.org.nz/events) or Facebook page to find organised activities in your area.

Signs of gambling problems

  • Look out for the early signs of gambling harm, which can include trying to win back your losses, hiding gambling from others, or feeling guilty about gambling.
  • Go to Choicenotchance.org.nz to take the quiz to test the health of your gambling. The site offers a range of supportive information and tools.
  • If you are concerned about yourself or someone else’s gambling, you can call the Gambling Helpline on 0800 654 655 or text them on 8006.This 24/7 helpline can provide advice and support and even link you up with free support services in your local area.