BKM Training & Consultancy
We are a UK gambling support service, dedicated to providing support and education services to address problematic issues caused by gambling. Our approach is informed by our Experts by Experience who bring an enhanced understanding of the impact of these issues on individuals and the community. The Founder of Betknowmore UK, Frankie Graham, lived with a gambling addiction for nearly 20 years prior to successful recovery in 2006. Driven by that personal experience and a belief that much, much, more needs to be done in terms of service provision for gambling dependency, Betknowmore UK was launched in 2014. Betknowmore UK is working tirelessly to raise awareness, deliver more support services and through education, create more understanding about gambling related harm.
How does your organisation contribute to preventing suicide and supporting those affected by it?
Betknowmore provides direct outreach support to individuals experiencing gambling related harms, alongside awareness raising and education to help prevent such harms occurring. Many of the people we work with are highly vulnerable, isolated and can see no way out of their current situation.
We are proactive in routinely assessing our services users for risks, including suicidal thoughts and behaviours and supporting them to access resources in their community to help stay safe. All staff are trained in Suicide First Aid, and our understanding of suicide risk in the context of gambling behaviour is further enhanced by the lived experience of our Experts by Experience.
BKM will continue to partner with stakeholders across sectors to raise significant awareness of gambling related harm including suicide and suicidal behaviours and to contribute to strategies to reduce and prevent such harms occurring.
What are your current priorities?
Our current priorities are to continue to empower those suffering with gambling related harms or have lived experience of such harms, through the provision of support and training, reaching and supporting vulnerable individuals and communities. In our outreach work we continue prioritising safe and immediate help to any of our clients who may be exhibiting suicide related vulnerabilities. Therefore our priority is to stay up to date with suicide prevention training and disseminate knowledge within our organisation and any community partners we work with.
We will continue to develop innovative, sector leading training and consultancy using our dynamic approach that combines evidence-based models with the voice of our Experts By Experience. In our learning and development work we are committed to making sure suicide awareness and prevention are integral parts of our offerings. Through these programmes we aim to contribute to research and deepen understandings of harmful behaviours, shaping a cultural change in which more people can be supported.
What challenges are you currently facing?
There is a currently a lack of research evidence to inform and support strategic priorities and action. Though the body of research on links between gambling related harms and suicide is growing there is still a lack of clarity as to what methodologies are most effective to produce research of good quality. This, alongside the stigma and shame associated with both gambling behaviours and suicide mean there is an urgent need for a combined public health and EBE approach to this important issue so that a common approach, or framework for suicide prevention in the gambling related harms area is developed.