If you are familiar with our organization, you have probably heard the name Gokkasten BV before. They are one of our biggest sponsors and donate on average €500.000 a year to Oikos Xplore. Usually, their money goes to projects that combat gambling addiction and this time it was no different. It makes sense because Gokkasten BV is active in the online casino world. They develop online slot machines and feel like they have a responsibility towards the players. Which, in our opinion, is very good. We would love to see more companies that take responsibility.
Measures within games
For all of you who are not yet familiar with Gokkasten BV, here’s a brief introduction. The company started in 2006, just after the first-ever Dutch online casino was launched. Their first slot, $pin Dracula which they call the gratis fruitautomaten gokkast in the Netherlands, was an instant success and put them on the map. In the meantime, they have created over a hundred more games, with a few other instant successes. But they have never forgotten their duty to care for the gambling addicts. This is where Oikos Xplore comes in. First, we started advising them about little amendments they could make to their games. That`s how they implemented to automatic pause function, where the game automatically pauses after x amount of time. The player can decide how long it takes for the game to pause again, but he cannot turn it off completely.
As with all our sponsors, we first need to get to know each other. Which is why we start off with some smaller projects. In the case of Gokkasten BV it made sense to set up some programs around Europe of ex gambling addicts that would speak at schools and companies to prevent others from making the same mistakes. This proved to be very successful and soon we progressed to bigger projects. One of the most notable projects was the addition of an extra wing to the Almost There Rehabilitation Centre in Limerick. This wing is especially dedicated to gambling addicts in Ireland. Gambling is quite common in Ireland, but seeking therapy not so much. Still, we already managed to achieve a lot in the few years since we’ve started.
Our own rehabilitation centre
Gokkasten BV however still didn´t think it was enough. They wanted to create their own rehabilitation centre, with our help of course. The idea was to develop it in an area where there were a lot of hidden victims, but that was still nice enough for European players to want to attend. This idea turned into the Leap of Faith Rehabilitation Centre in Cape Town. It makes a lot of sense, because not only does South Africa have Dutch roots, the gambling problem is bigger than one might think. On top of that, the weather and the fact that it´s far away are very appealing for European players that are seeking treatment. So far we have been able to successfully treat just under 50 people and we hope to reach a 100 in a year.
Seek treatment in time
Online gambling is getting more and more popular each day. Which is great, because it is a lot of fun. However, before you start playing, you should decide some rules for yourself. First of all, you should set a budget and stick to it. If you feel like you want to go over the budget, you should speak to someone about it or just take a break and cool down. Don’t let it escalate into an addiction, because it’s not worth it.