YGAM expands work with universities across the UK
The Young Gamers and Gamblers Education Trust (YGAM) recently undertook research amongst higher education students to get an understanding of their behaviours and attitudes towards gambling and gaming, so support their current work with universities.
Over 2,000 students took part in the survey and whilst a large number of those asked said that they enjoyed the social side of both gaming and gambling, the results indicate that it can also have a negative impact on the academic performance of students and the quality of their friendships and social activities. In addition, for the students who gamble, nearly half said that they are constantly concerned about their financial situation.
Summary of results:
Gaming is a popular way to reduce stress
Students are finding the university experience stressful. With 79% of students playing digital games, easing the pressures may be a motive benefit but 48% of those who game every day said it got in the way of friendships and studies.
264,000 students int eh UK are at some risk form gambling
Around 88,00 already defined as problem gamblers.
59% of students who gamble say they are always worrying about their financial situation
16% have gambled more than they could afford
Students gamble to escape the stresses of university
For students who are moderate risk or problem gamblers the findings show they are more likely to gamble to 'cheer them up when they are depressed', even though 9 in 10 feel guilty about the way they have gambled
One third of these students say their gambling habits have a negative effect on their wellbeing
Over half have considered dropping out of university and one ins event have negative perceptions of their overall university experience.
Partnering with Universities
YGAM's social purpose is to inform, educate, safeguard and build digital resilience amongst young people and the results from the survey highlight that more needs to be done across university campuses to raise awareness of the potential dangers and help students make informed decisions.
Students are clearly finding university stressful and as the survey suggested they are using gambling and gaming to relive the pressure or in an attempt to relieve financial worries.
As a direct result of this research YGAM has now partnered with nine universities in the UK, employing students on a part time, Living Wage contract to deliver awareness campaigns, attend events and develop content for social media.
Over the next few years, YGAM plans to roll out this important work to many more universities with a focus on the following areas:
Increase understanding of the wellbeing and support service available and how to access them; reaching students for which gaming or gambling is negatively affecting them.
Raise awareness of gambling and gaming addictions: providing students with a safe space to explore risks and seek support.
Provide accessible budgeting and financial advice: particularly for students starting university.
Extend easy access to social events and communities: to help students build positive social relationships.
Provide additional academic support: to reduce the anxiety about academic performance, workload pressures, uncertainty about the future.
If you work within a university and would like to discuss how you can partner with YGAM to help enhance wellbeing and safeguard students, or if you are interested in finding out how you can help towards funding programmes please email: [email protected]