Family and Whānau Counselling with Oasis | Gambling Support

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Family and Whānau Counselling with Oasis

Talking to a counsellor at Oasis will provide whānau, friends and family with emotional support and practical tools for coping better

Pathways of support for family and whānau

We know through our contact with community/tāngata how challenging it can be to ask for help but we encourage family/whānau to do this as soon as possible to reduce social isolation and distress and improve wellbeing and self care. Contact us for an appointment via phone on 0800 53 00 00, via this website or Facebook messenger. 

Diverse pathways of support:

  • Family and friends are welcome to attend counselling with or without the gambler present.
  • This can be determined by the needs of your family/whānau and by talking with a counsellor.
  • Family sessions with the gambler present are encouraged to provide all family/ whānau members with support and an opportunity to share their experiences. This can reduce stress and isolation for all members. One type of family session we offer is Single Session Family consultation.
  • An individual friend or family/whānau member may need support in their own right and to learn how to best manage the situation with the gambler, cope better and strengthen support systems and self care.
    • One type of family focussed counselling is Five Step Method of counselling.


  • If you are living with the gambler and they are emotionally volatile: quick to anger and yell or to put you down, then it is important that you reach out to Oasis to discuss next steps for safety and your emotional well being and prevent family violence and abuse.
  • This is an important step to create safety for your whole family/whānau, especially children.
  • We can assist you to be in touch with family violence organisations if this is required and work on an immediate safety plan with you.

Gamblers are encouraged to include family/whānau in a counselling plan

We encourage gamblers early in the counselling process to invite family and friends to be part of their counselling plan and gambling relapse prevention plan.

Family focused approach

  • Involvement of family early in the intervention with the gambler present is an important part of counselling that is strength based.
  • A strength based approach draws on the knowledge, insights and cultural norms of the families we work with.
  • The parents guide the family session where children can be present and the counsellor can be viewed as an additional resource to keep things on track, ensure everyone is heard and the goals for the session are met.
  • Recognition that family members are impacted by mental health and addiction issues and need support and at times a referral to another service.

Single session family consultation (SSFC)

  • Brief process for meeting with family/whānau. This helps families to engage and meet to talk about mental health and addiction impacts, concerns about wellbeing, and the way forward
  • Provides clear semi structured process to assist families to work through issues
  • Typically starts with a phone call from the counsellor to key family members to discuss their willingness to take part,  topics to be discussed, what is safe or not safe to talk about.
  • SSFC is typically one or two family sessions with a follow up session over the phone with  family members to check on progress and if further support, referral is needed.

Five Step Method of Counselling

  • An intervention that comprises five steps over five sessions that is based on research with family members. These people described being close to and concerned about, someone with a gambling or other addiction as a highly stressful experience that can impact on their own mental and physical health and impact negatively on their ability to live a happy life.
  • This method of counselling focuses on the needs of the family and whānau members who are affected by someone else’s addiction, in their own right.
  • The focus centres around the family member’s experience, explores different ways of coping, strengthens social support networks and provided information about the addiction.  
  • A work book provided with exercises and information.  

Get in touch with Oasis on 0800 53 00 00 or to find out more visit our FAQs