Problem Gambling: Innovative vs Stigmatised Issue Approaches
Thursday 08 September 2016
Join us during Gambling Harm Awareness Week for a stimulating webinar presentation from the National Director, John Wong and Counsellor and Health Promoter, Jerry Lo from Asian Family Services.
AFS is a community service that focuses on supporting Asians who are suffering from gambling harm. AFS currently offer help in six Asian languages (Mandarin, Cantonese, Korean, Japanese, Thai and Vietnamese).
There is a long history of gambling in the Asian community. Most Asians are familiar with the saying “小賭怡情” (a small amount of gambling is entertaining). Problem gambling is easily stigmatised and most people condemn problem gamblers as people who lack discipline or do not know how to control themselves. That is one of the reasons people do not want to reveal to others that they are suffering from problem gambling “家醜不可外揚” (do not wash your dirty linen in public). This is common reason people delay seeking support.
The AFS approach combines clinical and public health strategies. The clinical approach can be tailored to an individual, family, group or peer support group. The public health approach involves projects such as, Gamblefree Day (now Gambling Harm Awareness Week), social marketing, promotions at cultural festivals (Chinese New Year), tailor-made workshops, volunteer training and support for gambling policy submissions.