Responsible Gambling Association

For the Responsible Gaming Association, the year 2019 meant an intensification of its activity, a fact proven both by the development of already existing projects and by the launch of new initiatives. Thus, through the projects launched, developed and implemented, the Responsible Gambling Association has an increasingly important contribution to the education and prevention of gambling addiction as well as to the provision of psychological counseling to people who face such problems.
The training program, Trained for Majorate, which takes place in high schools all over the country and targets adolescents who are approaching the age of majority and for which the gambling activities will soon be allowed to continue their development at national level in 2019. The program has a dual role. The first is to educate young people so that they can make the right decisions, to know the risks of getting involved in activities that do not correspond to their level of psycho-social development and which may affect their further development. The second role is to prevent problems related to gambling excessively. Last year, Trained for Majorate reached over 2,700 students from 25 high schools in Bucharest and 11 cities: Alba-Iulia, Brașov, Brăila, Botoșani, Buzău, Cluj-Napoca, Constanța, Galați, Iași, Pitești and Timisoara.
Trained for Majorate seminars take place in the form of interactive informal discussions, in which Dr. Cristian Andrei, psychotherapist and expert of the Responsible Gaming Association, speaks to students in the 11th and 12th grades about what is really important in social networking and how adolescents should react to the temptations of adult entertainment.
And for the Responsible Gambling project, the most important national program dedicated to people facing gambling problems and offering real help to them, the year 2019 has meant a sustained development. Designed to prevent, identify and assist players who have exceeded the recreational limit of gambling, through multiple and effective intervention, not only for the directly affected persons, but also for their families, Responsible Gambling implies, beyond the support offered to those who facing problems, and awareness raising and training activities carried out at the level of betting agencies and gambling halls.
Currently, within the Responsible Gambling program, people with gambling problems can call one of the 6 psychotherapy offices opened in Bucharest (2), Cluj-Napoca (1), Iași (1), Craiova (1) and Constanta (1). They offer 5 free psychological counseling sessions for players and / or families of those affected by gambling issues, and the number of sessions is expected to be expanded gradually as the program develops.
In figures, the Responsible Gambling program meant last year more than 1,500 people who called the toll-free telephone line GREEN-LINE, 0800.800.099, over 860 people who were scheduled at one of the offices in the program and over 500. people who showed up at one of these offices.
The year 2019 did not represent for the Responsible Gambling Association only an intensification of the already existing projects and programs, but also an alignment with the international trends. Thus, at the beginning of September, the Association launched, for the first time for our country, the online psychological counseling service 24/7. This is the most modern instrument for facilitating access to psychological counseling made available to people with (potential) problems related to gambling, or those close to them, who feel the need for real-time guidance. Thus, the Responsible Gaming Association expands its range of methods by which it supports the people who have exceeded the recreational limit of this type of entertainment, favoring them the access to non-stop specialized help and, at the same time, offering an even higher level of confidence, comfort and confidentiality to those who use this service.
The “Counseling 24/7” service can be accessed through the new website of the Responsible Gaming Association, www.jocresponsabil.ro, where, in addition to the completely changed interface, an online chat module has been integrated through which any player can get in touch direct with one of the responsible game psychologists. The “24/7 Counseling” service is a non-stop service, available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Therefore, the website www.jocresponsabil.ro, aimed at both players who feel they have problems, as well as their families and close friends, is now ready to answer all the needs and questions of those who access it, and at the same time make it available to users the most modern and complete methods of help and support.
The implementation of this real-time online psychological assistance service “Counseling 24/7” aims to increase the self-control capacity of the players facing problems and, in particular, to provide support even from the first moments when they decide to ask for help.
The launch of the “Counseling 24/7” service comes in the context in which specialized reports published internationally show that technology has positively influenced in the last years the way in which psychologists approach the compulsive behavior that some people may manifest towards gambling.
In the 4 months since its launch, 24/7 Counseling has been accessed 1,660 times. The total duration of counseling sessions conducted by psychologists with the persons who called the service amounted to more than 2,700 hours of counseling, hours that went head to head, meaning over 115 days of counseling).
Responsible Gambling Association thanks all the companies in the gambling industry who support these projects and intends to develop and implement projects and programs for community impact in 2020.