Trade Association BACTA Donates £14,000 to Charity YGAM

The British Amusement Catering Trade Association (BACTA) has donated £14,000 to problem gambling charity organisation Young Gamblers Education Trust (YGAM).

BACTA President, Gabi Stergides, presented the cheque to YGAM Chief Executive, Lee Willows, at the BACTA headquarters in Ely place, Camden. According to YGAM, the two organisations are also planning to collaborate to develop opportunities and qualifications for employees in the industry.

We are hugely appreciative of BACTA’s support to YGAM. Our educational resources are consistently evolving as we scale our reach across the United Kingdom and gain further insight of what is effective. Lee Willows, Chief Executive of YGAM

Willows continues: “BACTA’S support to help us further strengthen these educational resources is really welcome; in particular, we are being asked to do more with parents and we will use the donation from BACTA to develop a suite of parent-facing material and then pilot these. We are also grateful that BACTA members, such as Silcock Leisure, are also supporting YGAM and we very much hope to build upon our work with BACTA.”

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BACTA has made a £14,000 donation to YGAM ©BACTA

John White, Chief Executive of BACTA added: “BACTA is a staunch supporter of YGAM and will continue to be so in as many ways as we can, be this through offering our own facilities or financially. Safeguarding and educating young people to the dangers of problem gambling has been and will remain a top priority for BACTA and its members. We hope through this donation to help YGAM in its cause. We look forward to continuing to work closely with YGAM and learning from its commendable work.”

According to a recent complaint from fellow UK-based problem gambling charity, GambleAware, numerous casinos and gambling companies have failed to contribute part of their incomes to fund addiction treatment. As a trade association representing businesses in the amusement machine supply chain, one of the main roles of BACTA is to encourage its members to be socially responsible for problem gambling.

Lee Willows, Chief Executive of YGAM

Lee Willows, Chief Executive of YGAM ©YGAM

In a recent blog post, Willows stated the importance of receiving support from the industry and thanked those who have made contributions: “Our approach to working with the gambling industry is one of purposeful, positive and impactful engagement. Of course, like every charity, YGAM absolutely needs income, but by taking the approach we do, such as incorporating employee volunteering or looking at ways to off-set some of our core costs then we achieve an even greater buy in from the industry. It’s really encouraging that many in the industry are willing to help and support us in our mission.”

YGAM has also recently received a donation in a similar amount from Payitforward, the charitable arm of online gaming software developer, Microgaming. In May, Payitforward donated £12,680 to YGAM, which will reportedly be used to bring the YGAM offering to the Isle of Man.

When making the donation, Kimberley Broad, Head of Compliance at Microgaming said: “Promoting responsible gaming and supporting our local community are hugely important to us, so we were naturally keen to support YGAM in extending its accredited programme to the Isle of Man. We have been very impressed with the charity’s success on building a programme that focuses on increasing awareness and resilience against gambling-related harm and we look forward to supporting them in delivering the vital training workshops on the island.”

Microgaming and YGAM have been keen to collaborate and this project provides a perfect opportunity to take our education programmes to the Isle of Man, whilst at the same time work with Microgaming to deliver our accredited and authentic training. We are hugely grateful for the donation from Microgaming PlayItForward as we believe taking our programmes to the Isle of Man will enable us to engage with another professional (teaching) audience and gain valuable feedback on the relevance and educational content.Lee Willows, Chief Executive of YGAM

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