Sports betting is growing in popularity in South Australia, with young men aged 18 to 34 most likely to participate. Young people’s gambling is influenced their family and friends and by beliefs that betting is a normal part of life and an easy way to make money.
Behind the massive growth in sports betting in young people is the rise of gambling advertising on TV and online, and easy access to digital platforms, especially through mobile phones.
In 2021, the Office for Problem Gambling (OPG) partnered with Adelaide United Football Club (AUFC) to deliver ‘Here for the Game’ a program to disrupt the normalisation of betting in sport. Our partnership with AUFC proved to be successful with fans recalling and resonating with the message of the campaign. Fans also told us how they felt proud that their club supported such an important community initiative. To read more about what the fans thought of Here For The Game, visit The Score.
In 2022, OPG is expanding the initiative welcoming the Adelaide 36ers and Adelaide Giants as Here For The Game partners for seasons 2022/23 and beyond. These clubs will help deliver and support the Here For The Game message to their respective sporting community and also help OPG spread the message to the wider community.
For season 2022/23, we welcome Mitch McCarron and Sunday Dech (36ers), Jordan McArdle (Giants) along with Craig Goodwin, Dylan Holmes and Bernardo Oliveira (AUFC).
‘Here for the Game’ aims to get young people, their parents and peers focused on all the things we love about sport, the big kicks, the tense moments, the winning goal, the cheers, the excitement, the love of your team. We want South Australians to be “Here for the Game” not the gambling.
To learn more, visit the Here for the Game website.
Here For The Game in the media (2021)
Human Services team up with Adelaide United to launch campaign aimed at reducing problem gambling
24 November 2021
A new advertising campaign aimed at reducing gambling at sporting matches is about to launch. It’s a partnership between the Government and Adelaide United that’s aimed at young men who use betting apps. The new ‘Here for the Game’ campaign is targeted at young men who gamble throughout sporting matches using betting apps. The Government teaming up with the Adelaide United Football Club aiming to make sport only a positive experience. Human Services Minister, Michelle Lensink says they’re very concerned about the impact betting companies have on younger people.
Lensink: “We want people to be here for the game, to focus on the sport stars that they admire, to be here for the community, for family, for the atmosphere, and for all the things that are really positive about sports rather than to be focused on their phones and on online gambling.”
The new ads featuring on TV, radio, social media and outdoor advertising will include strong imagery and messaging. The slogans, ‘Here for the memories and not for the bet payouts,’ ‘Here for the fans and not the odds-on favourite’ just some to be included.
Here For The Game campaign challenging the normalisation of sports betting
25 November 2021
David Penberthy & Will Goodings speak to Nathan Kosmina, CEO, Adelaide United FC
Goodings: Great idea that we spoke a little bit about yesterday … Here For The Game, an initiative by Adelaide United where they basically said no to being sponsored by big betting companies like seemingly everything in the world of sport is these days and instead partnered with the State Government on a campaign to start education people about the pitfalls of gambling. CEO, Nathan Kosmina … this is a fantastic initiative.
Kosmina: It is, I’m really surprised .. with the feedback, we expected it to be well received it was really good for us internally, in terms of we had a lot of discussions, particularly through COVID when I think some of these statistics actually spiked in terms of betting spend from people with a lot of time at home and we made … a conscious decision … it’s really not for us, sports betting in terms of we rebuild our culture via mission vision values, a lot of buzz words but at the same time we have started to speak about this and then we said, we wouldn’t have a betting company on our kit, you look to the English Premier League and almost every team has a betting company on their kit and it got to the point … we don't even want them on our website because it’s mostly kids going through our website so that was 12-18 months ago and it evolved in discussions with the Office for Problem Gambling and came about the announcement yesterday that we have signed a three year deal.
Penberthy: We got a huge response on the show yesterday when we talked about it as well and it feels like … a lot of parents in particular who are just over how the extent to which the messaging now almost seems to be that if you haven't got a bet on, you are not really getting the most out of the game and that’s why I think the slogan, Here For The Game, it’s like actually we are here for the love of football, not here because we are in a multi.
Kosmina: Yeah it takes I back to why we all enjoyed sport as kids … now the kids start off you are having to put them on a phone to keep them occupied because they are bored … the most alarming stat for me was the 75% of 8-16 year old’s can recall a betting brand. My son is six and we watch a lot of sport on TV and it’s only a matter of time before he starts to ask questions about what is this …
Penberthy: It’s not a matter of long time either like I reckon … my son … he could recall odd for all the AFL games, he’d go, ‘I can’t believe Port are paying $1.20 for that’. It’s seen as a measure of form.
Kosmina: And that’s essentially what the campaign is, it’s … not necessarily saying, it’s like a positive health message or road safety message in terms of promoting some positivity … come along and enjoy it, the ad is really good like that it shows parents and kids interacting an the dad saying to his son, ‘It’s not about my multi’ so that is a positive message, hopefully I think, it already had resonated and I think it will continue to do as we start to play games and promote it a little more.
Goodings: It’s not an idea without downside and money talks in football … is there a danger that by stepping out of that space financially Adelaide United can't put a product on the park … maybe not today but in the future?
Kosmina: Yes and no I mean I think what we’ve tried to remain conscious of is the value of the good will in the community … we are effectively a state team … our conscious sort of thinking is that well we are happy to forego these revenues for the next three years on the basis that we think we can actually do a lot more outside of it because ultimately it’s a shot in the arm financially, it doesn’t actually build any good will, it’s not a partnership that offers long term value, it’s literally cash injections, we are more so about building longer term partnerships with South Australian community.
Penberthy: Hopefully the flip side is that a lot of corporates … might look and this and go these blokes have got a good set of values …
Kosmina: It came from a set of values that we developed through COVID it evolved … with the Office of Problem Gambling and ... it’s been really good.
Goodings: Good stuff and good on you mate.
Kosmina: Thanks guys
The A League club has partnered with the SA Government to launch the Here For The Game campaign
24 November 2021
Adelaide United Chief Executive, Nathan Kosmina says he hopes his club will blaze a trail for other sporting organisations after turning its back on sponsorships from betting agencies. The A League club has partnered with the SA Government to launch the Here For The Game campaign which aims to help prevent the rising issue of problem gambling in sport, particularly for young people. Kosmina says he hopes other professional clubs in the state will join the campaign in future.
Kosmina: “The temptation to accept sponsorship revenue, particularly in this market with COVID, there is no hiding from the fact that professional teams have had some challenges in the last 18 months, at the same time it’s a positive message and hopefully the broader sporting community in South Australia get behind it.”
Adelaide United launched a new campaign to help prevent the rising issue of problem gambling in sport
24 November 2021
Adelaide United has launched a new campaign which aims to help prevent the rising issue of problem gambling in sport, Luckily for young people. Teaming up with the South Australian government, the a-league says it's turned its back on partnerships with popular betting companies to launch the Here for the Game campaign. Reds chief executive Nathan Kosmina says the club's made an ethical decision to steer away from betting agencies despite the financial benefits it could provide.
“We made a conscious decision that that wasn’t for us. We’re a club that’s founded in the community. We felt as though we had a duty of care to promote a positive message and it was somewhat disingenuous of us to partner with betting agencies and accept betting revenues if we’re true to that.”