Due to the stigma associated with gambling addiction, less than 10% of problem gamblers ever seek help. Our objectives were simple: increase awareness and participation rates in treatment programs.
The ugly truth is that the wider community and problem gamblers themselves see gambling not as an addiction but rather a weakness of character. While advertising could raise awareness, it could only go so far in helping problem gamblers feel empowered to seek help.
We worked with clinical psychologists to create a new kind of treatment program that was inherently public and social: the 100-Day Challenge, and to promote the program we showed four real problem gamblers taking the challenge, warts and all.
We increased awareness of treatment programs from 10% to 56%, doubling the target of 25%.
We increased the number of problem gamblers formally seeking help from 10% to 20%, exceeding our target of 15%.
By the end of the campaign, 10% of Victoria’s problem gamblers had signed on to the 100-Day Challenge, effectively doubling treatment participation in the State. Our target? a modest 1%.
By creating an inherently public and social treatment program, we dragged gambling addiction out of the shadows and into the light.