Submission Type

Presentation

Session Title

Session 1-2-B: Harm Prevention and Youth

Location

Caesars Palace, Las Vegas, Nevada

Start Date

28-5-2019 11:00 AM

End Date

28-5-2019 12:25 PM

Disciplines

Clinical Psychology | Counseling Psychology | School Psychology

Abstract

“Who really wins” is the first comprehensive youth gambling prevention program developed and implemented in Croatia, based on a national research study on a representative sample of high-school students, conducted at the University of Zagreb. The Program was developed, piloted and modified between 2012 – 2014. Its pilot implementation was performed in 2 high-schools in the City of Zagreb, by the authors of the Program and evaluation results indicated a decrease in risk factors, namely better knowledge about gambling and less gambling related cognitive distortions among training group, compared to a control group of students (Huić et al., 2017).

In 2016, after adaptation and modification of the Program, project team begun with a national educational 3-day trainings for the school professionals who could then implement the Program in their high-schools. So far, five educational trainings were held and approximately 70 high-schools across Croatia have the opportunity to implement the Program.

Evaluations of the process and effects are a mandatory parts of the Program implementation, so professionals are obliged to perform standardized pre-test and post-test (before and after the Program) and send the questionnaires back to the authors for the purpose of evaluation. This study will present preliminary results from the first wave of the national evaluation with N=470 high-schools who participated in this 9-week Program. This is also the first implementation conducted by trained professionals, not the authors of the Program.

Results indicate that the Program is still effective in enhancing students’ knowledge in gambling facts and reducing gambling related cognitive distortions, while effects on different socio-emotional skills differ by gender. Interestingly, compared to the previous study (Huić et al., 2017), this study showed greater effects on girls.

Results will be interpreted in the context of advantages and challenges of implementation, as well as potential adaptations that would be valuable to increase effectiveness of this psycho-educative prevention program for both genders.

Keywords

youth gambling, prevention, evaluation, gender differences, psycho-educative program

Author Bio

Neven Ricijaš is an associate professor at the Department of Behavioral Disorders (University of Zagreb, Faculty of Education and Rehabilitation Sciences). He holds a doctoral degree in the field of juvenile delinquency and high-risk behavior. Since 2010 he has been a leader of several gambling related projects with the main aim to transfer new scientific and empirical knowledge into creating preventive and treatment interventions for people who develop gambling related problems.

Dora Dodig Hundrić is an assistant professor at the Department of Behavioral Disorders (University of Zagreb, Faculty of Education and Rehabilitation Sciences). She holds a doctoral degree in the field of gambling and has actively participated in the design and implementation of several research projects focused on youth problem gambling. She has, together with Neven Ricijaš, created a new course – „Gambling and other Behavioral Addictions“. She is also the head of Faculty’s Psychosocial Counselling Unit.

Sanja Radić Bursać is a social pedagogue who works as a high-school counselor in Ivanić Grad. Her main professional interest are preventive interventions, youth risk behaviors and youth gambling. For many years she is conducting prevention programs, and is one of the authors of the youth gambling prevention program “Who really wins?”. She is also a head of the Zagreb County prevention board for the educational system.

Ana Rakić is a social pedagogue who works as a counselor at the Daily Clinic for Gambling Disorders in the Psychiatric Hospital St. John in Zagreb. Her main professional interest are preventive and treatment interventions for gambling related problems. For many years she is also conducting prevention programs in high-schools, and is one of the authors of the youth gambling prevention program “Who really wins?”.

Funding Sources

No funds.

Competing Interests

No conflict of interest.

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May 28th, 11:00 AM May 28th, 12:25 PM

THE EFFICACY OF THE “WHO REALLY WINS?” YOUTH GAMBLING PREVENTION PROGRAM – PRELIMINARY RESULTS FROM THE FIRST NATIONAL IMPLEMENTATION STUDY

Caesars Palace, Las Vegas, Nevada

“Who really wins” is the first comprehensive youth gambling prevention program developed and implemented in Croatia, based on a national research study on a representative sample of high-school students, conducted at the University of Zagreb. The Program was developed, piloted and modified between 2012 – 2014. Its pilot implementation was performed in 2 high-schools in the City of Zagreb, by the authors of the Program and evaluation results indicated a decrease in risk factors, namely better knowledge about gambling and less gambling related cognitive distortions among training group, compared to a control group of students (Huić et al., 2017).

In 2016, after adaptation and modification of the Program, project team begun with a national educational 3-day trainings for the school professionals who could then implement the Program in their high-schools. So far, five educational trainings were held and approximately 70 high-schools across Croatia have the opportunity to implement the Program.

Evaluations of the process and effects are a mandatory parts of the Program implementation, so professionals are obliged to perform standardized pre-test and post-test (before and after the Program) and send the questionnaires back to the authors for the purpose of evaluation. This study will present preliminary results from the first wave of the national evaluation with N=470 high-schools who participated in this 9-week Program. This is also the first implementation conducted by trained professionals, not the authors of the Program.

Results indicate that the Program is still effective in enhancing students’ knowledge in gambling facts and reducing gambling related cognitive distortions, while effects on different socio-emotional skills differ by gender. Interestingly, compared to the previous study (Huić et al., 2017), this study showed greater effects on girls.

Results will be interpreted in the context of advantages and challenges of implementation, as well as potential adaptations that would be valuable to increase effectiveness of this psycho-educative prevention program for both genders.