top of page

We are a leading impact-focused UK charity dedicated to the prevention and reduction of gambling harm.

According to the World Health Organization, "The gambling-related burden of harm appears to be of similar magnitude to harm attributed to major depressive disorder and alcohol misuse and dependence. It is substantially higher than harm attributed to drug dependence disorder"


Here at Gambling Harm UK, we know that sometimes all it takes to change the world is a little support. Since our founding in 2020, we have been determined to make as much impact as possible.


The core of our efforts is to bring out the ideas and passion of people with lived experience to a range of activities that reduce and prevent gambling harm. Through all of our endeavours, we ensure that we display the conviction that matches the need.

Our Values

We are authentic

We know first-hand that gambling harm can be prevented and that can be life-changing and potentially life-saving for individuals and their loved ones.

We are impact-driven
We believe in our determined resolve to tackle the injustices surrounding gambling harm, hence we specialise in addressing disproportionately affected and neglected issues.

We are lived experience
We believe that individuals with lived experience of gambling harm are the experts and that they should be provided with meaningful opportunities to have a positive impact.

We are inclusive

We believe in making sure our team represents the diverse needs of the populations we aim to serve.

We are collaborators

We believe in sharing what we know so that our work can be maximally impactful and reach people affected by gambling harm everywhere.

Our Values

Our Impact

Do It For Her

A short film written by: Mohammedally Shushtari, directed by: Shehroze Khan and starring: Fady Elsayed.

In 2021, Gambling Harm UK began working with Fully Focussed and Million Youth Media on a short film to help raise awareness and understanding of the disproportionate gambling harm experienced by young people from minority backgrounds.

Do It For Her

Featured Posts

Frequently Asked Questions
  • What is Gambling Harm UK?
    Gambling Harm UK is a leading UK charity that was established in November 2020 by individuals with lived experience to create as much positive impact in reducing and preventing gambling-harm as possible. The team started working together for the first-time on the All Bets Are Off Podcast in April 2020. We came together in lockdown because we each wanted to help make a difference to someone else who may be struggling with gambling-harm.
  • What is Gambling Harm UK's vision?
    We want to eliminate the devastating effects of gambling-harm in the current generation of those suffering and prevent the effects reaching future generations.
  • What is Gambling Harm UK's mission?
    We believe in people with lived experience and the change that they can bring through research, education, and treatment (RET). Therefore, Gambling Harm UK is lived experience led and lived experience focused.
  • How is Gambling Harm UK funded?
    From 23rd June 2021 to 21st September 2023, Gambling Harm UK had been on the Gambling Commissions’ published RET list of approved charities to which licensed operators must direct their annual contributions for research and treatment. In this time, the organisation received less than £500 directly from the gambling industry as part of RET contributions. It should be noted that this contribution was unsolicited and unconditional as we strongly believe in our commitment not to be influenced by industry in any way shape or form. We believe that this paltry sum reflects the industry's lack of interest in funding independent and meaningful activity. Gambling Harm UK has received indirect funding from the gambling industry through other charities by means of regulatory settlements applied for socially responsible purposes. These occur when the Commission takes regulatory action against a gambling operator, an outcome of that action can include a payment in lieu of the financial penalty the Commission might otherwise impose for breach of a licence condition. We believe there are significant issues with funding in this way due to industry influence limiting the scope of what activity can be funded. For instance, our primary prevention efforts in medical education and public health working have not been funded for in this way. Gambling Harm UK, previously known as Gambling Education Network and TalkGEN, has also been supported by grants through PeaceFirst and Bolton Borough Council. Overall, our organisation has grown from an idea to action through the tireless altruistic efforts of its team-members. In particular, the lived experience founders of the charity have volunteered substantially since its inception, donating their time, resources, as well as expected salaries and other incomes into the organisation.
  • What is Gambling Harm UK's charitable purpose?
    ‘The relief of those who are in need as a result of a gambling addiction or gambling-related harm and their families through: a. Improving and providing education towards matters relating to gambling harm and addictions by using an evidence-based public health approach, with a focus on discussions on recovery of those suffering harm; b. Improving the health of those suffering from gambling harm by promoting addiction recovery, the mitigation of harm, and preventing harm in the first place through the development and dissemination of insights, advice and support; c. By engaging with and/or conducting evidence-based research that helps to further understand gambling harm and addictions’.
  • What is gambling-harm?
    Research has identified a broad taxonomy of harms suffered by those with lived experience of gambling. They categorise the types of individuals into three groups. First, harms experienced by people who gamble. Secondly, harms experienced by affected others of people who gamble. This refers to people who do not gamble themselves, but experience harm which stems from a person who gambles. Thirdly, harms experienced by communities as a consequence of gambling. For these first two categories of harms, the kinds of harm are categorised into three “temporal modalities”, General, Crisis, and Legacy. General refers to harm, as the name suggests, which arises from gambling on a general basis, such as the erosion of savings. Crisis refers to harm that is more extreme and has immediate consequences, such as bankruptcy or relationship breakdown. Legacy refers to harms which are experienced over a longer period of time, often which arise out of General or Crisis harms, such as ongoing financial hardship or restrictions due to bankruptcy. Finally, for all three groups, the types of harms experienced are divided into eight categories: financial harm, relationship disruption, conflict or breakdown, emotional or psychological distress, decrements to health, cultural harm, reduced performance at work or study, criminal activity, lifecourse and intergenerational harms
  • What is lived experience?
    Lived experience or experts by experience (EbE’s) are individuals who have understanding or knowledge through direct first-hand involvement.
  • What is the prevalence of gambling harm in the UK?
    Approximately 1% of the adult population has suffered from a gambling disorder in the past 12 months Approximately 10% of the adult population has suffered from significant gambling harm in the past 12 months Adults 0.5 - 1.2% of the adult population were reported to have a gambling disorder in the past 12 months according to prevalence surveys from 2007 to 2018 3.5 - 7.3% of the adult population were reported to suffer harm in the past 12 months but not meet the threshold for gambling disorder (low-risk and moderate-risk harms) from 2007 to 2018 6 - 7% of the adult population were reported to suffer negative effects as a result of another person’s gambling behaviour in 2019 and 2020 Young people and children 0.4 - 1.7% of 11-16 year olds in school were reported suffering from a gambling disorder in the past 12 months from 2014 to 2019 1.2 - 2.7% of 11-16 year olds in school were reported suffering harm in the past 12 months but did not meet the threshold for gambling disorder (at-risk harms) from 2014 to 2019 4.9 and 5.5% of 11-16 year olds reported to suffer negative effects as a result of a family member’s gambling in 2019 and 2020
  • What is the significance of gambling harm on the population?
    Gambling is a major public health issue and according to the WHO, the gambling-related burden of harm appears to be of similar magnitude to harm attributed to major depressive disorder and alcohol misuse and dependence. It is substantially higher than harm attributed to drug dependence disorder Gambling-harm is a significant modifiable risk-factor on an individual level even at levels of harm below the threshold for gambling disorder Quality of Life Impacts (Disability Weights, where 0 = full health, and 1 = death) Gambling disorder: 0.49 (median of New Zealand & Australia) Affected other of gambling disorder: 0.36 (Australia) Affected other of moderate-risk gambling: 0.33 (Australia) Moderate-risk gambling: 0.33 (median of New Zealand & Australia) Low-risk gambling: 0.18 (median of New Zealand & Australia) Affected other of low-risk gambling: 0.17 (Australia)
  • Why is gambling harm a race and equality issue?
    Individuals from ethnic minority backgrounds are less likely to gamble, more likely to experience gambling-harm, and less likely to receive treatment for gambling harm The most recent gold-standard gambling prevalence surveys, BGPS 2007 and BGPS 2010, found that Asian and Black ethnic groups were disproportionately affected by gambling disorders. In 2012, the NHS Survey Data found this relationship again and a significant relationship for 'other' ethnic groups. The primary limitation here is the small sample sizes of people from minority backgrounds; hence, the estimates lack precision. NHS Survey Data comprise of self-completion forms included as part of a broader health survey which replaced BGPS after 2010 and a 50% decrease in research funding at the Gambling Commission. BGPS 2007 (DSM-IV) White: 0.5% (Odds ratio: 1, n=7724) Asian or Asian British: 1.4% (Odds ratio: 3.55, n=263) Black or Black British: 2.0% (Odds ratio: 3.80, n=171) Other: 2.2% (Odds ratio: 2.86, n=192) BGPS 2010 (DSM-IV) White: 0.8% (Odds ratio: 1, n=7073) Asian or Asian British: 2.8% (Odds ratio: 3.06, n=308) Black or Black British: 1.5% (Odds ratio: 1.72, n=202) Other: 0.8% (Odds ratio: 0.60, n=151) Gambling behaviour in England and Scotland: Findings from the Health Survey for England 2012 and Scottish Health Survey (According to either DSM-IV or PGSI) Ethnicity White: 0.4% (Odds ratio: 1, n=10132) Black/Black British: 2.5% (Odds ratio: 7.37, n=178) Asian/Asian British: 2.4% (Odds ratio: 5.02, n=452) Mixed: Other: 2.2% (Odds ratio: 6.86, n=136) Religion No religion: 0.5% (n=3626) Christian - Catholic: 0.6% (n=1846) Christian - other denominations: 0.3% (n=4787) Muslim: 0.8% (n=240) Any other religion: 3.4% (n=329) Individuals from ethnic minority backgrounds are also more likely to live in areas which have high densities of betting shop Other minority groups are also disproportionately impacted by gambling harm, such as those with disabilities and those belonging to gender and sexual minorities, making tackling gambling harm an intersectional issue
  • Medical Education
    Despite gambling-harm having such a profound impact on the quality of life of individuals (both the individual who gambles and those affected by someone else's gambling) And that on a population level, according to the World Health Organization (WHO) the harm attributable to gambling is recognised as being as significant as the harm that is attributable to alcohol use disorder or major depressive disorder, and many times than the harm attributable to drug use disorders... We've heard many times that Doctors and others Health Care Professionals (including Psychiatrists!) don't have a clue! Gambling Harm UK has been working hard to change this, and we're pleased to say that we've worked with two of the most popular Medical Education Organisations: Osmosis & Geeky Medics to help change that. We hope that this builds a foundation for more work in this incredibly neglected area of health. To see the Osmosis article, click here: 'Gambling Addiction: What Is It, Causes, Signs, Prevention, Support, and More' We believe that Health Care Professionals should ask about gambling? A life-changing or potentially a life-saving conversation could begin for individuals (In Great Britain: approximately 1% of adults and 2% of 11-16 year olds have a gambling disorder) who have a gambling disorder, or their affected loved ones. Moreover, an individual does not need to hit the threshold of gambling disorder in order to suffer the devastating effects of gambling (approximately 1 in 10 are affected by gambling harm in the past year). That's why we have worked with Geeky Medics to embed that question on gambling in a range of Medical Education history taking skills guides. Alcohol history Cardiovascular history Chest pain history Depression history Gastrointestinal history Respiratory history We genuinely believe that this bit of work will have an impact on thousands of Medics and therefore in turn thousands of individuals affected by gambling harm. Gambling Harm UK is a relatively new organisation, but we'll keep continuing to make long-lasting impactful change to this area. As well as working with Medical Education platforms, we will continue to explore opportunities to bring about statutory teaching within healthcare and appropriate NICE guidelines to match the needs of gambling harm.
  • Research
    According to the World Health Organisation in 2017, "the gambling-related burden of harm appears to be of similar magnitude to harm attributed to major depressive disorder and alcohol misuse and dependence. It is substantially higher than harm attributed to drug dependence disorder." Despite this, there have been no efforts to explore the significance of gambling harm on the population in the UK. Furthermore, efforts to establish the cost of impact from gambling harm in the UK have been extremely limited. Our research priorities follow a public health approach, and hence our focus on health impacts and cost of impact. One of our proudest pieces of research came through a collaboration with Future Proof Project CIC in response to the Gambling Act Review: Call for Evidence. 'Gambling Explained', among many other things, demonstrates that affected others are significantly harmed and yet often omitted from discussion and consideration, let alone action. The authors of this report and the submission to the Gambling Act Review have a combined lived experience of affected other harms of over 25 years. They are particularly pleased to share 'Gambling Explained' as this piece has been written and funded independently. Gambling Explained is a collation of salient scientific evidence and disconcerting comments made by the industry and other stakeholders across ten key topic areas, which are: Chapter 1: Gambling and health Chapter 2: Gambling and addiction Chapter 3: Gambling in children and young people Chapter 4: Gambling and advertising Chapter 5: Gambling research, education, and treatment Chapter 6: Design of gambling products Chapter 7: Gambling and the way it is conducted Chapter 8: Gambling and voluntary bans Chapter 9: Gambling operators as multinational corporations Chapter 10: Gambling and crime Inspired by 'Tobacco Explained', 'Gambling Explained' culminates understanding of what is known and what the industry and other stakeholders have said." In addition to shedding light on critical matters pertaining to the Gambling Act Review, 'Gambling Explained' hopes to validate the significance and role of emerging lived experience voices, particularly those of affected others, in driving change.
  • All Bets Are Off Podcast
    The All Bets Are Off podcast was established in April 2020 as a gambling addiction recovery podcast. The podcast features over 50 hours of content covering an extensive library of listening content aimed at individuals who have experienced gambling harm. We cover a wide range of discussion points and it includes everything from recovery stories and signposting to chats with those who want positive change and reform.

Frequently Asked Questions

bottom of page