Photo: Jay Hynes Photography
'It's like you love that more than me,' says Jess. 'I just don't get it.'
'It's my betting. I just can't stop thinking about it,' says Shane. 'I really wanna stop.'
While most young people know that gambling can be risky, the glamour and fun portrayed in clever advertising, along with an early win, can suck them in.
With many myths and misconceptions about gambling added to the mix, young people often don't understand the risks until they have some bad experiences.
In the Victorian Responsible Gambling Foundation's first-ever youth campaign, we're encouraging young people to call our dedicated youth line for help with their own betting issues or when someone close to them has a gambling problem. We want to build their confidence to speak up.
Helping young people find their voice
The campaign features videos of Jess and Shane telling an all too familiar story – of a young person affected by gambling but unsure what to do or where to turn.
Our research tells us young people often don't know who to talk to about gambling issues, especially when a parent is the cause of their concern. This inspired the campaign slogan – find your voice.
We're targeting teenagers between 15 and 18 who are affected by someone else's gambling or are experiencing issues with their own gambling. We've added new pages to our website that directly address the issues and concerns of young people and encourage them to call Gambler's Help Youthline on 1800 262 376.
Gambler's Help Youthline phone counsellor Angie Soumilas recently spoke to Inside gambling about what people can expect when they call.
Lights, camera, action!
On a chilly day in June we filmed some very talented actors for this foundation first.
Jess's video tells the story of a girl affected by her dad's betting. He's too preoccupied with betting to notice her frustration and concern. She feels like he loves his betting more than her. She tries to talk to him about it but doesn't know how. After a failed attempt she picks up the phone.
In Shane's video we meet a boy whose betting is out of control. It's all he can think about. He feels detached from life around him, is losing all his money and doesn't know how to stop. He wants to talk to his mates about it but can't find the right words. Then he makes a call.
While the campaign is still in its infancy, early results and feedback are very positive with the website pages being viewed over 25,000 times in the first four weeks.
How to get help
If you're a young person concerned about your own or someone else's betting, or if you're a parent, friend or family member concerned about a young person's betting, call Gambler's Help Youthline on 1800 262 376 or visit Youthline.