GamCare – Promoting Responsibility

February 11, 2009

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By The GamCare Team

GamCare is probably well-known to some remote gambling operators, and our logo familiar to many more. However, fewer may know the range of services we offer both to anyone affected by problem gambling and to the industry.

Officially known as the national association for gambling care, educational resources and training, GamCare’s strategic priorities are to improve the understanding of the social impact of gambling, promote a responsible approach to gambling and address the needs of those adversely affected by a gambling dependency

In fulfilling these objectives, its frontline and free counselling services are GamCare’s core business. For immediate, confidential, advice and emotional support, anyone affected by problem gambling can speak to advisers one to one online on the NetLine at our website or on the HelpLine 0845 6000 133. An online Forum and ChatRoom offer self help and mutual support.

GamCare’s specialist counselling service is delivered free to clients at three locations in London, through a network of Partners around the UK and now online as well. All counsellors delivering the GamCare service are required to be BACP accredited or working towards accreditation. Already experienced addictions counsellors, Partners receive GamCare’s specialist training and funding for counselling, supervision and administration.

Having piloted online counselling in 2008 and seen a clear demand, GamCare began to promote it in January 2009. It meets a hitherto unmet need in delivering weekly counselling sessions with qualified practitioners, experienced and trained in treating problem gambling, to those who are not able to access face to face services.

To enhance the charity’s ability to monitor and improve the quality and efficiency of its services, all counsellors and advisers input statistical data to a centralised system which provides the basis of our annual Care Services Report. GamCare also contributes practical and advisory support to academic research.

Alongside GamCare’s core frontline services, GamCare Trade Services (GTS), a company wholly owned by the charity, helps ensure social responsibility within the gambling industry. GTS provides training in player protection and operates a certification scheme to recognise best practice. For those in the online environment this can be particularly important as GamCare is not limited by jurisdiction, working with companies across the whole gambling industry who recognise the importance to their business of implementing sound social responsibility measures.

To achieve GamCare Certification, operators must show compliance with GamCare Player Protection Code of Practice. We offer training and prefer a co-operative approach to ensure that players are adequately protected. GTS training helps operators to meet their social responsibility requirements relevant to their own regulatory framework. By raising awareness amongst customer service teams, training enables staff to more easily identify problem gambling behaviours and interact appropriately.

GamCare Certification acknowledges and awards those companies who have demonstrated a high level of player protection through training in social responsibility and problem gambling awareness and the implementation of GamCare Player Protection Code of Practice.

Remote companies which have received GamCare Certification are listed on the GTS website.

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