Sarah-Jayne Holmes – Psychological Wellbeing Practitioner HMP Ranby, Offender Health
I would like to offer my sincere gratitude to Tony Kelly for his dedication in the promotion of awareness to an addiction, that for too many years, has been ignored. Little has been addressed, or indeed supported, to help gamblers and their families overcome the devastation this addiction causes. Tony’s message is truly heartfelt and he speaks from his own experiences. I can only hope this invaluable service he offers, is supported, to help prevent such adversity in the future, for families where gambling could become a problem.
Leigh Ott – Curriculum Leader at Plumstead Manor School
Tony Kelly delivered a workshop for our Sixth Form Students as part of a Wellbeing Day. Through the PSHE curriculum, we tackle forms of addiction – drugs, alcohol etc – but there is little covered about gambling, which is one of the fastest growing addictions in the UK. Tony raised awareness of the risks and the impact gambling can have on family and career. He shared his personal story and his struggle and the damage that his addiction caused. This was well received by students.
Adele Duncan – Chief Executive at Gordon Moody Association
When I first started as Chief Executive at Gordon Moody Association, I met Tony Kelly at an event along with one of his colleagues and he invited me to meet up to discuss what Red Card do and also to help me better understand gambling addiction and the gambling industry as it was new to me. Fast forward a few months and we had arranged for Tony and a member of his team to attend our residential treatment centre in Beckenham to discuss his story, what Red Card aims are and to discuss working together and creating pathways for referrals into each other’s services.
Our team in Beckenham found Tony to be a very approachable, honest and kind-hearted person who himself had been in gambling addiction. Our team and Red Cards were able to discuss the programmes which each party are delivering and understand better the roles that each organisation takes on. Red Card promotes much-needed awareness and education of gambling addiction.
We thank Red Card for their time and for Tony in sharing his lived experience at the event, and we look forward to continuing our positive working relationship.
Simon Turner (on LinkedIN)
“I think it’s important for high profile figures to speak out about addiction. Not only does it affect everyone from all walks of life, process addictions like gambling are often seen as less damaging than substance addictions, the reality is that they are just as damaging in every way. Drugs, alcohol, sex, love, shopping, gaming, gambling, porn etc. they are all the symptoms of the disease of addiction which is wide reaching and ruins the lives of not just the individual but all those who cares for them. Good work with this group, everyone, even professional footballers need help and someone to turn to. People in general also need educating. ”
Justin Gardner, Football Coach at Newham 6th Form College.
“The workshop was very good and I would certainly recommend this to other colleges and in fact football clubs. We got a real insight into a successful footballer who was suffering from depression, & how quickly this spiralled into an addiction simply because he kept how he was feeling to himself. We really got a lot out of it and the content directly related to the situation that some of the young sporting males at this college also find themselves in.”
(following a workshop at Newham 6th Form College – April 2016)
Kathy Jones M.B.A.C.P, C.CY.P – Councillor (Mindset Counselling Service)
“Redcard Consultancy, promotes gambling awareness / education, we know with gambling comes many other social harm issues, such as substance mis-use, crime, mental health issues , homelessness, debt and self harm to mention but a few. I am experience of 15 years as a Counselling Practitioner of practising within the field of addictions and that of addictive behaviour. I am aware of the impact it has on the individual as well as the impact on their families, employers together wit their social life.
Many people are left feeling isolated, fearful of the future and out comes and this is why their needs need to be met which are : awareness, help, and support from a qualified counsellor. As of those who have experienced such addictions and have come through to the over side, this shows that there is hope after such an addiction.
With the right support in place, there can become a positive change in their situation. This includes the use of coping strategies in place which allows the individual to achieve their full potential and that includes to enable them to return to their full potential within their life after experiencing such addictions. ”
Malcolm Peterson Psychotherapist UKCP reg.
“Why I support red card:
Red card is a unique project, I say this because it integrates psychotherapeutic clinicians with the insider’s knowledge of the founder Tony who is in recovery from addiction. This is a rich source of support for those struggling with gambling addiction. It also offers therapists from a variety of clinical backgrounds that enables it to work with people with a wide variety of presenting problems as well as the gambling addiction. Also therapists who work in different areas of the country will help more people access support that is sadly lacking for people suffering with this particular addiction.
Gambling addiction and mental health issues:
Many people might gamble as a way of trying to escape a depressive illness, though the gambling can feed the depression and make it a lot worse. There other severe mental health problems associated with gambling addiction such as personality disorders and anxiety disorders. Gambling addiction can affect the whole family, it may lead to out bursts of aggression and sometimes violence, sadly directed sometime at family members. The shame associated with all this can make it very hard for people to seek help and can at times lead to people taking their life.
Due to the increased level of gambling addicts in the UK, now approximately 500,000, it is imperative that more edu-cation and awareness is out there so that people from all walks of life can fully understand the huge impact GAMBLING ADDICTION can have on our lives, and that is in a very negative way. Having met with RED CARD [Tony Kelly] I was touched by their vision and passion for wanting to make a difference and i look forward to working on THE RED CARD PROJECT in the coming months.”
Angela Clarke – Founder of Associates For Seed Of Mustard
“I am the Founder of Associates For Seed Of Mustard (AFSOM); a legacy business which is heavily involved with activities to inspire and encourage others. One of the events is the “Celebration Of Life” Dinner Dance Ball.
Having spoken to Tony Kelly of Red Card, I took much interest in where he had been, where he is today and where he is going. Tony’s story and his business is very timely and appropriate with the increasing gambling in today’s society.
Gambling is very rife. One only has to turn the TV on, especially during the early hours of a morning to see the increasing number of games being played and influencing adverts.
Red Card offers the vital support needed for those who are becoming indulgent or have already indulged and have been sucked into the mindset of gambling.
Tony was invited to do an after dinner speech at this year’s Dinner Dance Ball. This was a formal event of over 150 people.
Tony captured his audience, by taking them on a journey, his journey. The talk was very well presented and spoken from the heart with reference to his experiences. The complimentary feedback received after the event was amazing and has also opened doors of opportunity for him.
Tony is a very passionate individual, who is eager to offer his support in a tailored way to match the needs of each situation.
I would highly recommend Red Card to any organisation working on combating gambling. This also includes individuals of the public requiring what the Red Card business is able to provide.
Tony is highly respected, knowledgeable and passionate. He is warmly wished all the best with his future endeavours and AFSOM look forward to supporting his ventures in the future.”
Alan Heyes – Therapist
“Tony is a larger than life thoughtful, encouraging figure who has the ability to intuitively understand and support People with Gambling issues. His gentle, non-threatening approach and demeanor are an inspiration. His organization Red Card are passionate about raising awareness and supporting people on the road to recovery Tonys real life experience means he can truly empathize with people, and I have no hesitation in recommending him and his organization ”
April Mehmet – Learning support & youth mentor.
“Hi Tony Yes it is important, as I see so many youngsters going into betting shops and I also see teenagers playing fruit machines in pubs etc and I hear of young ladies and men talking about going to the casino. They need to be educated because it can be addictive! Thank you April ;)”
Sunny Dhadley FDAP CMgr MCMI – Drug & Alcohol Service User Involvement Officer (Wolverhampton Service User Involvement Team)
“I manage an independent drug/alcohol peer led service user team, we aspire to support individuals to recover from substance misuse through a variety of mechanisms. We are a non-clinical service provider, which offers wrap around support to clients accessing statutory & non statutory addiction treatment services. This includes (but is not limited to) – support with housing, welfare, access to education, training, employment, arranging volunteering placements, strategic involvement plus more.
I have been supporting Tony since the start of this year in developing his service. During this time, I have learned to understand more about gambling addiction and the impact that this can have on individuals, families and society.
I feel that Tony is ideally placed to raise awareness of gambling and its dangers in a powerful and credible way.”
Angela Melo – Director Ethics, Youth and Sport Division (UNESCO) and Stuart Page – Director International Cooperation & Anti-Corruption Policy Development (ICSS)
“The ICSS and UNESCO would like to sincerely thank you for sharing your story
at the International Experts Meeting on the Fight Against the Manipulation of
Sports Competitions which was held at Doha, Qatar, on 16 and 17 September
Your contribution has helped us clarify the future.
We truly believe that with your help, we can deepen and widen the reach of our
actions, especially at regional country levels where support an impact are most
We trust on your continued commitment to protect the integrity and credibility of
sport from manipulation and corruption and look forward to our continued