The program encourages kids to love the game, not the odds and equips them with the skills to think critically about the risks associated with gambling.
Cricket Victoria CEO Nick Cummins urged Victorian clubs to participate in the program to help play a role in shaping a positive future for our next generation of sports lovers.
“We’re thrilled to continue our partnership with the Love the Game program as it’s a great opportunity for us to remind kids that sport is about having fun with your friends and learning the fundamentals of the game we love,” he said.
“We don’t want kids’ enjoyment of sport to be spoilt by a focus on gambling odds or unrealistic expectations of winning, which is what we see in sports betting ads.”
Excessive advertising is normalising sports gambling, with men aged 18-24 making up a third of Victorian sports bettors and participation by young women rising. This is the first group to have grown up surrounded by the ads.
“Sport plays an important role in the lives of many Victorians at both grassroots and elite levels, which is why BBL teams the Melbourne Stars and Melbourne Renegades are proud to participate in a program to help kids understand that sport and betting are separate activities,” Cummins said.
Foundation CEO Shane Lucas said the influence of athletes and sporting clubs in encouraging young people to love the game, not the odds is significant.
“State sporting bodies that are able to get out into the community, like Cricket Victoria, are central to the success of Love the Game, which reflects growing concern about the effects on children of constant exposure to sports gambling promotions.
“The program is essential to our efforts to mitigate the influence of an average 948 gambling ads played on Victorian free-to-air TV each day.
“The 700+ Love the Game members are to be commended for prioritising the wellbeing of Victoria’s young people over gambling revenue,” Lucas said.
To sign your local club up to the Love the Game program today, head to lovethegame.vic.gov.au.
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