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GamblefreeDay 2011 to be launched with Waka on the Waitemata

Gamblefree Day 2011 to be launched with Waka on the Waitemata

This year’s Gamblefree Day on Thursday 1 September features a host of events and activities around the country and will be officially launched with ‘Waka on the Waitemata’ at Auckland’s Okahu Bay.

Tony Milne, Problem Gambling Foundation National Public Health Practice Leader, says Gamblefree Day is now a well established annual event to raise awareness about the harm caused by gambling in our communities.

“We want people to get out and enjoy some of the events and activities and at the same time think about what Gamblefree Day stands for,” he says.

This year’s events and activities around the country include:


‘Waka on the Waitemata’ is a free and fun day of activities at Okahu Bay starting at 9:00am with a mihi whakatau. Activities start at 9:30 with waka ama experiences, land-based activities, workshops, stalls, and competitions. Hosted by Hapai te Hauora Tapui Maori Public Health, the Problem Gambling Foundation of NZ (PGF) and the Salvation Army Oasis Centre, the event provides an opportunity to promote culturally inspired alternatives to gambling to young people.

Slogan competition

Asian Family Services at the Problem Gambling Foundation is holding a Gamblefree Day slogan competition in five languages. Auckland Councillor Richard Northey will present the awards at a ceremony being held on Sunday 11 September at Chinatown, Ti Rakau Drive, Manukau, starting at 2:00pm.


Garden Place will be buzzing with activity between 11:30am and 1:30pm with a live band, street theatre, speeches and stalls – an event hosted by Poverty Action Waikato and PGF.


Live jazz music will be a feature of the street stall being held at Cuba Mall between 11:00am and 2:00pm. The PGF team will be providing information about problem gambling along with a team of Asian volunteers providing information for the Asian community in different languages.


Captain Stomper will make an appearance at the Gamblefree Day event being held on Saturday 3 September between 11:00am and 2:00pm in Christchurch at the St Albans Baptist Church. The event will focus on health, wellbeing and fun with free entertainment, food and arts and crafts for local children.


An ‘ethical funding forum’ will be held in Dunedin on Gamblefree Day from 5:30pm-8:00pm at the Dunedin Art Gallery. Speakers Peter Adams (Auckland University), Major Robert Ross (Salvation Army), and Sue Russell from the Dunedin Council of Social Services (DCOSS), will hold a discussion about alternatives to pokie funding that are ethical and sustainable.

National lyric competition

In the lead up to Gamblefree Day, Hip Hop rapper Scribe, who has personally experienced a problem with the pokies, is supporting the ScribeWithMe lyric competition in conjunction with Choice not Chance, to raise awareness about the signs of harmful gambling and the need for people to seek help.

Visit for further information or follow the competition on Facebook.

Children’s poem competition

Scribe will also be attending the awards ceremony for the children’s poetry competition hosted by Mapu Maia, PGF’s Pacific unit, and Radio Samoa. The prize giving will be held at the Papatoetoe Town Hall, Auckland, on Thursday 1 September at 5:30pm.

The Problem Gambling Foundation of New Zealand provide free, professional and confidential help with gambling problems: Ph 0800 664 262, Email Visit or follow PGF on Facebook.


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