The Young Gamers and Gamblers Education Trust (Ygam) is helping to safeguard millions of children and young people, with training helping teachers and parents to spot problem gambling signs, according to a new report by the youth-orientated charity.
More professionals than ever benefited from Ygam’s evidence-based education programmes across England, Wales and Northern Ireland in 2022, according to the report, with the charity delivering training to 4,819 delegates.
Among that total were 2,994 teachers and youth workers, while other professionals included health practitioners, social workers, mental health specialists, university staff and community leaders.
The delegates trained by Ygam have committed to reaching an estimated 1,857,895 young people over the next 12 months.
Teachers will be primary drivers, delivering Ygam resources as part of the school curriculum between Key Stage 2 (for seven to 11-year-olds) and Key Stage 5 (for those over the age of 16).
According to Ygam’s latest report, 96% of teachers and youth workers who underwent the training feel confident about talking to young people about gambling and gaming. This represented a big increase in comparison with the 33.3% who felt confident before the Ygam training.
An impressive 98.1% agree they can now signpost and support young people if they are concerned about gambling or gaming harms, compared to 25.8% pre-training. Meanwhile, 98.5% can now recognise signs of gambling and gaming harm in young people post-workshop, compared to 31.5% beforehand.
“The findings of this report are a source of pride, and I want to thank the team, our partners, and supporters for their dedication and effort during this year,” Dr Jane Rigbye, CEO of Ygam, said.
“Our focus was to consolidate and build on the impact of our existing work, whilst looking to the future through the development of a new strategy to guide us from 2023.
“The team have risen to the challenge; they have been flexible, inspiring, and creative. They have set the foundations to enable us to deliver programmes which meet the needs of those who have responsibility for safeguarding children and young people, in a way which will deliver continuously improving standards and real impact.”
Over the past 12 months, Ygam has worked closely with leading academics from universities including Plymouth, Loughborough, Bristol, and Newcastle.
The charity has also increased its engagement with parents in 2022 through online workshops and its Parent Hub website. Some 94.9% of parents felt confident about spotting signs of gaming and gambling-related harm after a Ygam workshop compared to 14.9% pre-workshop.
Through the League Football Education programme, Ygam also worked with 12 professional football clubs to deliver educational workshops on gaming harms to over 336 academy players.
In January, Ygam set out details of its latest strategy, including a pledge to continue delivering education to children and young people about the risks of gambling.
This week at ICE London 2023, Ygam was one of the sponsors of the ICE Consumer Protection Zone that contributed towards raising a total of £52,800 (€59,454/$63,798) for four safer gambling charities.
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