Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Social Work


School of Social Work

First Reader/Committee Chair

Shon, Herb


Gambling in the United States has been in existence since the 1800’s. For over two hundred years, gambling has brought in revenue and entertainment for consumers in the United States. As the population has diversified and the technology has advanced, the access to gambling has grown to be convenient and accessible for the consumer to enjoy. The purpose of this qualitative study was to explore the barriers and motivators from gamblers who sought recovery programs in Spanish. Fourteen current members of Spanish Gamblers Anonymous group were interviewed in small focus groups. The findings indicated that those who sought Spanish recovery programs underwent obstacles that where beyond finding and attending a program. Many barriers stood in their way including struggle with emotional feelings, language barriers, expectations of program, and inadequate support and resources. The majority of those interviewed did not seek the program entirely on their own behalf and the primary reason was not due to loss of money alone. This study reveals the emotional loss and personal gain from each participant. The lack of resources and poor public relations for problem gamblers who wish to attend meetings in Spanish continues to be a problem in the Inland Empire of Southern California, home of an ever growing population of Spanish speaking individuals and also home to some of the most visited casinos in Southern California.

Included in

Social Work Commons