Gaming Safe Initiative is an NGO that promotes safer Gaming for sustainable society, the President and founder is Barr. Amaka Mbaso who is a core professional in such subject, a solicitor of England and Wales, she has seen the danger in gambling and believes in eradicating underage gambling, she knows and understand that its going to be a collective effort and begs Gaming operators, religious leaders, government, parents, teachers, caregivers, media and others to join hands in tackling this rapidly rising issue.
Hon.Amb Chibuzo Patrick Osigwe is the President/Founder Meljenstin Youth Empowerment Initiative NGO a non profit, non Governmental Organisation that are passionate about empowerment of the less privilege especially the necessitous widows, orphans, youths, aged, and physical challenged in the society. She has over 131 awards and runs her NGO through self sustained effort. She is a seasoned advocate of Say No To Drug Addiction, Mental health and Wellness, a cause she has given everything in her to create awareness for in different states in the country.
The Gaming Safe Initiative has taken the awareness crusade of school based sensitization program on underage gambling prevention to ONITSHA SOUTH LOCAL GOVERNMENT. An excellent project The Chairman of Onitsha South Local Government Area of Anambra State, Chief Emeka Joseph Orji who recently emerged as the best Council Chairman in the South East geopolitical zone embraced with pride and is leaving no stone unturned to see that the Youths in his Local Government are properly educated and saved from the menace of gambling ravaging the future generations.
The event is holding on the 16th of November at the Onitsha South Local Government Headquarters by 10am,
A lot of reputable speakers will be there to impact , our crusader, a moralistic, pace setter and youth Empowerment amazon Hon. Amb Chibuzo Patrick Osigwe popularly called Buzopat was on ground at Ekwusigo Local Government Area in Ozubulu in June for Gaming Safe Initiative school sensitization program and she delivered the speech below. Unfortunately she won’t be available for this, read and be wise
PATHOLOGICAL GAMBLING AND DRUG ADDICTION/ABUSE
The connection between gambling and drug addiction are so close, many people who develop gambling addiction also develop drugs and alcohol addiction because these addiction move together and neither addiction is easy to manage.
Gambling Addiction involves risking something of value in the hope of winning something of greater value in return. The nightmare here is that people gamble on various things you can’t literally imagine.
It is more serious because the addicts are mostly young people, college boys and girls, the future citizens of a country of whom its welfare is dependent on. So its important to see that such young boys and girls should by no means fall victims to drug addiction and gambling addiction
Gambling and drug addiction are similar because they all involve a preoccupation and a persistent need to engage in the behaviour despite adverse consequences such as relationships, jobs or legal issues
Before we go further on this i want us to discuss the other aspect of deep seated root of addiction which is associated with energy that compel such individuals to be victims of such crimes. Upbringing, environment, peer pressure, inferiority complex and association contributes to this.
HABIT is an unconscious law of the subconscious mind. It is formed by a repeated processes of objective mind which becomes fixed laws in the subconscious.
WILLPOWER is the fulfilment of our desire( any desire) by reasoning objectively which manifest as a law through the subconscious mind. The subconscious mind obeys an impulse ( any impulse)points the way and does not explain.
INSANITY is a permanent state of subjectivity. ADDICTION therefore is a HABIT in a NEGATIVE form. There are good habits!
Let’s go a little further. The subjective state or consciousness is our world of imagination and visualisation. Here u find the good, the bad and the ugly. Its a domain where skyscrapers and nations are built. Its also the factory where the deadliest arsenals of the world are produced for war. Our ability to demonstrate mental health is in differentiating the good aspects of what we want from this subjective world.
ADDICTION therefore is a diseased condition that can be managed or treated if discovered early enough. The process of rehabilitation is usually very tough with the withdrawal symptoms. That’s why my NGO emphasises more on PREVENTION .
The alchemical aspect of an individual becoming a victim is the one we should talk about. It’s spiritually oriented. If u can see the debilitating havoc of addiction, maybe we can also treat victims with little additional energy outside ur energy on prevention.
Think about it. Gambling and Substance abuse continues to be a challenge that a lot of societies are battling and has become a global public health concern. Despite the horror stories of illnesses and deaths associated with substance abuse and gambling, the menace continues to prevail, especially among adolescents and youths. In Nigeria today, it is not uncommon to see adolescents engaging in gambling with pride, every corner has where gambling is being promoted and encouraged openly, a lot of personalities and influencers are openly stamping it but no one is telling the victims the implications of underage gambling and the abuse of substances like alcohol cannabis, cocaine, heroin and other illicit drugs.
Pathological gambling is a pattern of behaviour that severely impacts a person’s family, job and personal life. Initially gambling negative effects was estimated between 0.2% and 0.3% of the general population but now it has gone so high that it has become alarming and worrisome.
The high rate of comorbidity between drug addiction and gambling addiction are so high. They are related because of environmental factors.
Alcohol abuse have been found to have the highest and greatest effects at about 73%, followed by drug abuse but now gambling is in the same rank and that’s why we are here today.
Gamblers use drugs and alcohol to celebrate wins and to cope with depression after a loss. A lot gamblers use drugs to deal with the guilt and shame associated with gambling.
Gambling and drug abuse occur together as part of a broader anti-social lifestyle.
A person that is high on drugs views gambling as an acceptable method to acquire money to maintain and support his or her drug addiction habit.
They also have increased energy as well as an inflated sense of their gambling skills because the drug intoxication gives them confidence that they cannot lose.
When we talk about say no to drug addiction and gambling conference like this, people think that we are going to address the addicts and the victims, capital NO. Anyone that is down fears no fall again, they are no longer in the right frame of mind but they have families and relations.thats why this mobilisations is for our young teenagers, parents, guardians,teachers, youth advocates,social activists, local and state government, Ndlea, ngo’s, churches and media houses. These are people expected to come, learn and lend their voices to stop this drug and gambling evil and its destructive effects to the society.
THESE ARE FACTS ABOUT THIS
Genetics and physiological factors: psychological genetics and neuroscience research over the last two decades indicates that drug and gambling addiction act in similar ways to the brain. How? You may ask
Pathological gamblers and people addicted to drugs share same genetic risks for impulsiveness and reward seeking so they are vulnerable. The circuit of their brain that deals with rewards are underactive, so they are prone to take bigger risk at a spot without thinking.
The similarity is clear because just like people on drugs take more to get high and feel good, the people with gambling addiction must bet more money and take more risk to feel good.
Psychiatric factors research shows that people who have co-occurring drug and gambling addiction have higher rate of ADHD attention ( Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) Risky sexual behaviours and antisocial personality disorder.
The signs are similar if not the same, eg Removing themselves from people who are against their habit and aligning themselves with those on the same addiction.
Spending greater deal of time on activities deliberately orchestrated to support their habits
Taking substance in high quantities
Experiencing a strong desire to use drug and gamble
Returning back to habit despite social, occupational or medical consequences
Dead to emotions, logic and reasoning. A very dangerous situation.
Irritated without tolerance because of urgent need to do drug or gamble
Withdrawal or experiencing psychological, physiological symptoms that occur once the habit is stopped in a hurry or loss in gamble
Four stages of gambling
*Winning phase: small win and big win leads to excitement and a positive view of gambling
*Losing phase: this is the stage that they motivate themselves to carry on
*Desperation phase: At this point items and valuables are being disposed
*Hopeless phase: At this point the reality has set in that he or she is finished
The three common types of gamble
* Professional gamble
* Problem gamble
Three types of problems in gambling and drug addiction
*Spending more money than initially intended
*Arguing, quarrelling with friends and family after gambling
*The deadly urge to reinvest as soon as possible, after losing to win back what’s lost.
* Borrowing left, right and center, selling assets and even things that belong to others
* Feeling guilty, remorseful and suicidal
Dangers of gambling and drug abuse
Gambling Addiction can easily affect so many areas of life.
The Nigerian Government and the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), have tried to stem the tide in the country through policies and initiatives. International organisations, as well as private organisations in Nigeria, have also joined forces with the government in proffering sustainable solutions to the problem but needs to embrace the local NGOS who are in communities doing what they cannot do and encourage them