Awareness and social marketing campaigns aimed at addressing young people and the effects of gambling harm have been uncommon in the ACT. The social marketing campaign At Odds: Young People and Gambling was the first of its kind in the ACT. The project was designed to specifically target young adults aged 18 – 30 through a public health approach, to raise awareness of the indicators of harmful/risky behaviour in relation to gambling, and to help inform and support
peers and family members.
It can be hard to recognise when someone close to you may be facing harm from gambling.
The aim of the short video was to explore gambling related harms to young people and create a positive conversation amongst Canberrans surrounding the issue of gambling. The widespread confusion and silence surrounding young people and gambling results in the creation of stigma. Young gamblers currently feel significant shame and embarrassment, perceiving that they are tooyoung to have a ‘gambling problem’. Therefore, young people underestimate the extent of gambling harms. To address stigma, we needed to start challenging and transforming community perceptions. This video seeks to start a conversation, centered in a community approach, rather than placing blame on the individual gamblers. This aims to educate not only young gamblers, but the broader community in order to create a better understanding of gambling related harms and reduce stigma.
After discussion and planning we decided the most effective way to disseminate collateral would be through posters and flyers distributed across Canberra in key locations such as cafes, CIT, universities, record stores, music venues, specifically those that attract our target audience. We decided this as we felt that targeting young people directly at gambling venues and gambling related events could be framed in a negative way and too easily undermine our public health approach. It would have limited our messages to targeting individuals and come across as encouraging responsible gambling, which could serve to cause further stigma.