Gambling Counselling Support Services
- Gambling counselling
- Financial counselling
- Legal services
- Self-exclusion service
- Contact details
- Other helpful services
Gambling addiction, also known as compulsive gambling, is a type of impulse-control disorder. Compulsive gamblers can’t control the impulse to gamble, even when they know their gambling is hurting themselves or their loved ones. Gambling is all they can think about and all they want to do, no matter the consequences. Compulsive gamblers keep gambling whether they’re up or down, broke or flush, happy or depressed. Even when they know the odds are against them, even when they can’t afford to lose, people with a gambling addiction can’t “stay off the bet.”
Gamblers can have a problem, however, without being totally out of control. Long before an addiction has fully developed, gambling can have a negative impact. Problem gambling is any gambling behaviour that disrupts your life. If you’re preoccupied with gambling, spending more and more time and money on it, chasing losses, or gambling despite serious consequences, you have a gambling problem.
Our counsellors use specialised personal counselling techniques to help gamblers and their families to overcome problems associated with gambling. Your individually tailored program may include personal counselling, financial counselling, family member counselling and legal services.
Initial contact will be by phone and after an initial brief telephone assessment you will have the opportunity to make an appointment to see a counsellor. Counselling sessions can be with the person who has the problem and/or concerned family members.
During the initial assessment your counsellor will focus on the extent/impact gambling is having on your personal well being, family relationships, finances and work performance. You will then be encouraged to set your own goals and strategies for change.
Ongoing sessions are designed to help overcome the problems associated with gambling by reviewing goals and strategies using a holistic approach to establish and maintain change in the gambling activity, as well as looking at the reasons underlying and/or contributing to the problem.
Arrange an appointment with your local Wesley gambling counsellor.
Gambling financial counselling is a free confidential community service for persons with a gambling problem or persons affected by that person’s gambling problem. Persons affected can ring the service to make a face to face appointment with a financial counsellor within the gambling counselling service.
The initial session will assess financial options and ongoing sessions are also available to work through the selected options. Financial counsellor will assess the possible options for clients by looking at income, expenditure (especially associated with gambling), assets, liabilities and if any legal action has commenced. Options are presented to the client also informing of the civil legal process that will continue if nothing is done.
Financial counsellors do not provide loans or arrange for loans to be obtained and can only contact third parties such as lenders with written authorisation as required by the Privacy Act. If the option presents (after assessment of income and expenditure, assets and liabilities) financial counsellors can negotiate with creditors, debt collectors and others for repayment options after a commitment by the person to address their problems associated with gambling.
Financial counsellors in New South Wales must be accredited with the financial counsellors Association of NSW Inc. (FCAN). There are strict rules as to who may be a financial counsellor; primarily those financial counsellors belong to FCAN and must act solely out of interest for the well being of the consumer.
Arrange an appointment with your local Wesley Mission financial counsellor.
Wesley Community Legal Service (WCLS) is a unique community legal centre, established in 1994, that specialises in legal issues relating to gambling for residents of New South Wales. We welcome referrals from gambling counselling services and other professionals state-wide.
Our lawyers have expertise in working to help problem gamblers and their families who have legal issues relating to problem gambling. Our assistance, depending on the individual matter, may range from the provision of information and legal advice through to full representation in a court or a tribunal. We also seek to raise community awareness of problem gambling legal issues and services through promotional and educational activities.
We advocate for clients in dealings with the police, public and private organisations, creditors and external dispute resolution schemes.
Our expertise is focused on assisting clients and their families in the following circumstances:
- Where a crime may have been committed to fund gambling activities
- Protecting family assets from a problem gambler
- Where complex legal issues relating to gambling debts or bankruptcy arise (a financial counsellor should be consulted in the first instance)
- Where relationship breakdown is contemplated or has occurred due to gambling problems
- Where responsible gambling legal issues arise
Wesley Mission offers a self-exclusion service allowing you to ban yourself from certain clubs and hotels.
PH. 1300 827 638.
If you would like help or information from Wesley Mission Gambling Counselling Services please contact your nearest centre listed below:
(02) 9723 4289
25 Barbara Street
Fairfield NSW 2165
(02) 4915 3688
15 Denison Street
Newcastle West NSW 2302
3A Stapleton Avenue
Sutherland NSW 2232
(02) 9263 5577
Level 7, 133 Castlereagh Street
Sydney NSW 2000
(02) 4725 9200
30 Copeland Street
Kingswood NSW 2747
(02) 4351 0116
3/5 Colony Close
Tuggerah NSW 2259
These services are funded by the Responsible Gambling Fund, a branch of the Office of Liquor, Gaming and Racing, NSW Government.
Support and Self-help groups
- Gamblers Anonymous
24hr help line: 02 9564 1574
Gamblers Anonymous is a twelve-step recovery program and provides a supportive, non-judgmental atmosphere where you can share what you’re going through and get feedback and advice from fellow gamblers who understand your problem.
Visit the Gamblers Anonymous meeting calendar to find a meeting in your area.
- Gam Anon
Support for friends and family of people with problematic gambling
- Gambling & Aboriginal people
Contains lots of useful self help information, list of service providers and useful tools to address gambling issues.
- Gambling Help-Line
24-hour crisis line: 1800 858 858
Advice, referral and treatment service information
- Want to Stop Gambling
Self-help website with lots of useful information
- Getting Past Gambling
Active online support group for recovering gamblers
- Women Helping Women
News and support for female gamblers in recovery
- Northern Rivers Gambling Service
Contains lots of useful self help information and worksheets
- Know your odds
Informs gamblers how commercial games of chance really work
- Stop the loss coalition
The latest news, views and stories about poker machine addiction
Services for related problems
- Wesley CreditLine Financial Counselling Service
Provides a free financial counselling service
Ph: 9263 5577
- Legal Aid
Free legal advice, assistance and representation for those who qualify
Ph: 1300 888 529
- Financial Counsellors Association of NSW
Contains a list of financial counsellors
- Relationships Australia
Offering relationship counselling services