The Young Gamers and Gamblers Education Trust (YGAM) joined a group of organisations at the Chesterfield FC vs Altrincham FC game last night to raise awareness of gambling-related harms and the support available to fans.  

The club invited a selection of organisations committed to preventing gambling harms and helping those who may be struggling to attend the game to help promote their services. The initiative aimed to engage fans and highlight the links between poor mental health and gambling addiction.

YGAM attended the Technique Stadium alongside GamCare, Mentell, British Red Cross and Derbyshire County Council Public Health. Representatives from these organisations took the opportunity to talk to fans inside and outside the stadium before kick-off. The teams also distributed leaflets with lots of important information to help keep fans safe. Sam Starsmore, Head of Delivery and Jimmy Parkin, Education Manager attended on behalf of YGAM.

Greg Stenson, Public Health Service Development Officer at Derbyshire County Council said “I’d like to extend a huge thank you to the Spireite Trust for working with us on the gambling awareness initiative. Gambling is often termed as the ‘hidden’ addiction, therefore it makes identifying and having a conversation with a close friend or relative extremely difficult. Engaging with supporters of all ages and backgrounds before the game, and promoting support services, is integral to our public health approach in minimising gambling-related harm.”.

Daniel Bliss, Director of External Affairs at YGAM, said “This was a really important matchday initiative from the club and we were delighted to be part of it. It is crucial we all work together to raise awareness of the clear links between gambling harms and poor mental health. There will be many people struggling in silence so highlighting the support that is available is vital. If last night’s match inspires someone to reach out to talk about their mental health and access the support they need, it will be a good result.”

YGAM Education Manager, Jimmy Parkin

The attendance at last night’s game was 5,273 including 166 away fans. Liam Mandeville and Kabongo Tshimanga put the Chesterfield two goals to the good at the break, but Matthew Kosylo and A-Jay Leitch-Smith gave the away side a point with two late goals.

The TalkBanStop campaign was also promoted at the game. This is a partnership that combines practical tools with support to help you to stop gambling and kick-start your recovery journey.

TALK – Speak with a trained Adviser for information, advice, and support. www.gamcare.org.uk

BAN – Block your devices from accessing gambling websites and apps for free. www.gamban.com

STOP – Register to self-exclude from all UK gambling apps and websites for free. www.gamstop.co.uk