There are a lot of similarities between YGAM and Betknowmore UK. Both non-profit organisations, that were founded based on lived-experience of gambling-related harm; the chief executives are both socially driven entrepreneurs; our organisations have been generating purposeful impact for over five years and we are both working with some incredible businesses in the gambling space. 

The last five-years have flown by and in that time, Frankie Graham (CEO, Betknowmore UK) and I have spurred each other on, been critical friends to one another and lived through what it takes to establish purposeful organisations that we are incredibly proud of and humbled to lead. But we have always asked ourselves how we might combine our skills, experience and insight in this space to drive an even greater social impact. We believe we have found that special sweet spot and it lies in providing the gambling sector with authentic, accredited training. Authentic, as we embrace and embed lived-experience of gambling-related harm into the training, and accredited, having achieved the prestigious City & Guilds Assured standard, which in the words of the awarding body recognises ‘world-class training’.

We have developed two City & Guilds Assured, one-day workshops called (i) Understanding Safer Gambling and (ii) Safeguarding in a Gambling Environment. Both courses, aimed at customer facing-staff are delivered as a structured three, or six-hour workshop covering topics such as Safer Gambling and Risk; Engaging with Problem Gamblers; Mentoring and Coaching; Customer Care; Legal and Compliance.

YGAM and Betknowmore UK will work with operators to tailor the content to compliment current training, package it in your company brand with the ability to deliver on your UK premises or overseas. Each workshop can accommodate between five and twenty-five colleagues at a time and we promise an authentic, highly engaging and practical learning experience. We are often in Malta, Gibraltar and Isle of Man and we can combine delegates from two or more operators to create a shared, collaborative experience. In January 2020 we will also be launching open workshops in London, so do look out for these.

What makes our training totally unique is 100% of the profits are donated to YGAM and Betknowmore UK to enable our organisations to deliver our social purpose.

Lee Willows

YGAM: Delivering Social Purpose

In the last twelve months, YGAM have worked with over 1,700 (350 in 2017/18) schools and youth organisations / practitioners to embed the education programme which has reached over 180,000 (55,954 in 2017/18) young and vulnerable people. Over the next twelve-months YGAM are looking to increase that reach to 3,000 schools and youth organisations / practitioners, reaching approximately 650,000 young and vulnerable people.

As of September 2019 YGAM have partnered with eight (three in 2017/18) Universities to roll-out the University & Student enagement programme that will reach approximately 56,000 (18,000 in 2017/18) students and provide purposeful, part-time job opportunities for eight students (three in 2017/18).

YGAM now have twenty-five employees (seven in 2017/18); have raised just over £1m (£749,238 in 2017/18); gained City & Guilds Assured status and released their first research results.

Betknowmore UK: Delivering Social Purpose

Earlier this year, Betknowmore UK launched a new gambling support hub in the London Brough of Newham. Part of the new service provision is the accredited GOALS outreach support programme, which has been developed from the ‘Don’t Gamble with Health’ project, awarded the RSPH, ‘Health on the High Street’ award in 2018.

Since July 2019, the outreach team have provided over 200 hours of 1:1 mentoring to clients, participated in 11 borough wide awareness raising events, reaching 115 professionals and establishing 9 purposeful partnerships with voluntary and statutory services. Recovery rates for clients is encouraging; clients completing 10 mentoring sessions reduce their PGSI scores (gambling severity measure) by an average of 15 points and the service retains a 100% client satisfaction rate.

A new service called Peer Aid, developed and delivered in partnership with Gamcare, is launching in October 2019. The service will provide individuals with ‘lived experience’, an opportunity to receive training and learning to themselves become peer supports. The service will integrate with the national treatment network and work with the current service providers.