Community clubs 'Love The Game' this May
This May, AFL Victoria is joining forces with more than 700 local and elite sporting clubs in the state to raise awareness about responsible gambling during the Victorian Responsible Gambling Foundation (VRGF) Love The Game Month.
Together, they are taking a stand against the promotion of sports betting, demonstrating a commitment to protecting the well-being of players, fans, and the broader community. In May, Victorians will be encouraged to show kids that sport and betting don’t have to go together by participating in the Love the Game Challenge, which comprises:
- Turning your phone off for an entire match
- Finding ways to talk about sport without referring to the odds
- Deleting betting apps from your phone
- Making a pact with your mates to not bet on, or during, a game
- Avoiding gambling in front of kids
- Encouraging your local sports club to sign up to the Love the Game program
- Starting a conversation about the risks of sports betting.
Launching Love The Game Month in collaboration with the Point Cook Football Club, Victorian Responsible Gambling Foundation CEO Shane Lucas said, ‘Sport should be all about fun – but excessive gambling advertising is diminishing the experience for children by making it seem like sport is actually about betting,’
Mr Lucas said numerous surveys over recent years had shown that the sports betting industry is out of step with community sentiment, which is why programs like Love the Game are so widely supported, as recognised by its 700+ sporting club partners across the state.
‘Sports stars, coaches, parents – we are all role models for the young people in our lives and we can all play a part in severing the connection between gambling and sport.
‘So let’s all take up the Love the Game Challenge.’
Love the Game is Australia’s most prominent initiative to combat the normalisation of sports gambling among young people. Elite sporting partners include AFL Victoria and the 10 Victorian-based AFL clubs; Football Victoria and the A-League's Melbourne Victory and Western United; NBL’s Melbourne United; WNBL’s Melbourne Boomers; Super Rugby's Melbourne Rebels; Netball Victoria and Super Netball’s Collingwood Magpies.
WHY SHOULD YOUR CLUB JOIN LOVE THE GAME?
Children are growing up surrounded by gambling promotions that make it seem like betting on sport is normal. This is a concern, with young men (18–24 years) now the largest group of sports bettors in Victoria and participation by young women rising.
Love the Game clubs refuse to take sports betting sponsorship, which reduces the exposure of young people to gambling ads. Participating clubs also help kids to understand the risks associated with gambling and equip them with the skills to make critical, informed decisions when they’re older. Most importantly, they encourage kids to love the game, not the odds.
Sign up at lovethegame.vic.gov.au/join-love-game.
FREE CLUB PACK
Clubs that sign up to the Love the Game program and host a Love the Game round during the month of May will receive an exclusive pack containing training cones, a cap, clipboard, equipment bag, posters, and a conversation tip card. Click HERE to register.