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Vicsport encourages clubs to love the game

The Victorian Responsible Gambling Foundation will again team up with Vicsport in 2020 to encourage Victorian sporting clubs to love the game, not the odds.

The cornerstone of the partnership will be the Foundation-sponsored Love the Game Community Sporting Club of the Year Award, which Vicsport introduced in 2019.

Foundation CEO Shane Lucas said there was a natural affinity between the two organisations, both of which are dedicated to creating safe and healthy sporting club environments, especially for kids.

“Sporting clubs at every level play an influential role in the lives of the young people who participate in sport, so they are ideally placed to help disrupt the overexposure of kids to sports betting promotions that make it seem like everyone bets and everyone always wins.

“In reality however, gambling is a risky activity that can have negative effects for individuals, which can then flow on to family, friends and communities,” he said.

Recent research found that 31 per cent of students aged 12–17 years have gambled at some point in their lives, and that 73 per cent of surveyed students report TV ads as the most frequently seen type of gambling promotion they had seen.

“We think kids should be able to experience sport free from gambling ads,” Mr Lucas said

Vicsport CEO Lisa Hasker said it was an easy decision to continue collaborating with the Foundation.

“The Love the Game program aligns with our values. We want young people to enjoy sport and other healthy activities without unnecessary and potentially harmful distractions like gambling,” Ms Hasker said.

“Vicsport is delighted to continue playing an integral role in connecting a variety of sporting clubs and associations to the Love the Game program and demonstrating its value to members.”

For more than 30 years, the Victorian Sport Awards have recognised outstanding achievements in sport. The Love the Game Community Sporting Club of the Year Award will celebrate the achievement of a community sporting club, team or organisation that has demonstrated a strong commitment to encourage and support participation in sport and active recreation.

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