Individuals experiencing gambling harm will be able to continue accessing critical support services, with the Andrews Labor Government investing more in Gambler’s Help providers across the state.
Minister for Gaming and Liquor Regulation Marlene Kairouz today visited Ballarat to announce $49 million funding for the Victorian Responsible Gambling Foundation to administer the Local Gambler’s Help Program over three years, with a focus on regional and rural areas.
Offering communities tailored prevention, intervention, and treatment services, the program will support gambling harm prevention and provide financial counselling.
In addition, $2.2 million a year will support Aboriginal and culturally and linguistically diverse community partners to deliver services, including counselling in their own languages.
A new funding model, developed in collaboration with service providers, gives 11 Gambler’s Help partners across 15 areas of Victoria the freedom to determine the kind of financial and therapeutic counselling they offer based on client demand.
Gambler’s Help have identified four service priorities, including:
- Gambling, gaming and the online environment
- Raising awareness among young people and families of the risks associated with gambling
- Support for people with mental illness or drug and alcohol issues
- Working with the justice system.
The Victorian Budget 2019/20 committed $153 million over four years to the Foundation, of which the Gambler’s Help funding is the largest portion.
As noted by Minister for Gaming and Liquor Regulation Marlene Kairouz
“We know that some groups are more vulnerable to gambling harm- that’s why we’re targeting at-risk groups to help them get the help they need, when they need it.
As noted by Member for Wendouree Juliana Addison
“This investment in the Local Gambler’s Help Program will ensure communities like ours have ongoing access to high-quality support services.”
As noted by Member for Buninyong Michaela Settle
“The new funding model recognises that the Gambler’s Help partners – as the organisations and people on the ground providing services – are best placed to determine the needs of their communities.”