COVID-19 numbers are climbing, new BC restrictions have been mandated, an uncertainty about Christmas and what next year will hold... all stressful and uncomfortable things for us to manage. We know that isolation without meaningful activity and connection with others can very quickly lead to feelings of loneliness, depression and hopelessness. People are naturally spending more time online to cope and online gambling and gaming has exploded. While online activity can distract us from our stress, be fun and even interactive, it can also be time and energy consuming and EXPENSIVE!
BC Gambling Support Services - available online, by phone and yes, sometimes still in person!! Anyone living in BC, affected by the harms associated with problem gambling, is able to receive free support services, funded by the BC Responsible and Problem Gambling (BC RPGP).
A little bit about those of us providing the Gambling Support Services and how it all works... When you call the BC RPGP helpline @ 1-888-795-8111, (and you live in my region), your information is directed to me to help you get started! I am contracted by the BC RPGP to provide or direct people to the specific helping resource they may need. For instance, some people need to sort out financial or relationship messes before thinking about starting counselling. Others just want to learn more about how to better manage their gambling behaviour. I mostly connect with people by phone but am available to meet virtually as well as in person (location and COVID-19 permitting).
The program also offers free counselling to anyone who experiences harms from gambling. Registered Clinical Counsellors across BC offer specialized counselling services by phone, virtually and in person (in some areas and COVID-19 permitting). Darryl Anderson provides counselling to people in Williams Lake, Quesnel, Prince George, and surrounding areas.
In addition to helping those experiencing harms from gambling, the BCRPGP contracts with Prevention and Community Engagement specialists. Debbie Scallion is our Prevention and Community Engagement Specialist for Williams Lake, Quesnel and Prince George (and surrounding areas). She is working in creative ways to engage communities, both in person and with online events. Connect with her for more information. The Indigenous Counselling and Prevention Streams, include Registered Clinical Indigenous counsellors and Education and Community Engagement Specialists and Gambling Outreach Support, who provide their services through an Indigenous lens. Theses services are available to anyone who resides in BC, despite ethnicity.
Born and raised in Prince George, BC, I am a dedicated helper with a keen interest in gambling and gaming behaviour. I have a Master's of Social Work and also work as a Medical Social Worker with Northern Health. No prior blogging experience so here's to new learning!!