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Project Australia

Using the power of

lived experience

to transform communities and individuals through, coaching, advocacy and speaking


Kate Seselja is Founder of The Hope Project.


Kate is a keynote speaker, recovery coach and advocate for gambling reform.

For the past 10 years she has passionately advocated for Gambling Reform while holding various roles in the mental health and recovery spaces. Kate personally experienced 12 years of Gambling Harm and use what she learned to create positive change on every level — from influencing policies to changing vernacular.


Her authenticity and vulnerability create a pathway for others to learn and connect in a safe way by breaking down stigma and shame. As a passionate mum of six Kate turned her adversity into a life mission to coach, educate and inspire others. She brought this to fruition through founding The Hope Project in 2015.


Kate completed mental health education training through MIEACT (suggest linking to this) and contributed to programs for that mental health organisation. She also worked for five years as an online Recovery Coach for Los Angeles-based IGNTD Recovery (suggest linking to this).


As Co-Chair of Canberra Gambling Reform Alliance (CGRA) Kate has … (add in an achievement or two). This work led to her appointment to the Ministerial Advisory Committee to implement new gambling reforms in ACT. Late also serves on the Gaming & Racing Commission -Community Advisory Committee.


Kate has also worked as the National Manager for the Voices Program at the Alliance for Gambling Reform.


Kate is Co-Chair of GHLEE (Gambling Harm Lived Experience Experts). She is a TEDx speaker and gave a keynote address at the Rethink Addiction Conference 2022.


Kate has won a number of awards including a being a finalist in the Lifeline ‘Women of Spirit’ 2023. She has featured in a numerous publications including Marie Claire, SMH and the Guardian (links to all relevant articles). Kate has appeared on the following podcasts: Lifeline’, ‘The Quicky’, ‘Sober Award’ and ‘I don’t know how you sleep at night’ (links to episodes). Kate has also been a key participant on many television programs including ABC’s You Cant Ask That’ and ‘Q and A’, SBS ‘Insight’, Channel 10’s The Project, Channel 9’s The Today Show and CNN’s ‘Vital Signs’ (links to episodes).



Kate’s mission with The Hope Project:


Kate is changing the Gambling landscape in Australia to have a system that is focused on protecting consumers not the industries profits. 


Kate is teaching people how to build proactive resilience and develop a constructive relationship with the adversity in their life, via speaking engagements, presentations and workshops in workplaces, schools, universities and communities across Australia and internationally — this is her mission.

The Hope Project also has the licence to screen the powerful award-winning documentary RESILIENCE - The Biology of Stress and the Science of Hope. This documentary explores vital work bridging the gaps left by hopelessness and helps to illuminate pathways forward, free of shame.

Green Light Ray

Lifeline Women of Spirit Award 2023

I was very honoured to be a finalist in the Lifeline Women of Spirit Awards 2023 in recognition of my Advocacy in Gambling Reform.




Videos & Articles

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Holding on to Hope - Lifeline Podcast

Australians are the biggest gamblers in the world, and nowhere do we lose more than on the pokies. Every year, it is estimated 400 people take their own lives due to distress over their gambling issues and a further 12,000 contemplate or attempt suicide. Here, Kate Seselja describes how she too despaired about the way pokies were impacting her life – and how not only overcame her addiction but has helped many others live their best lives as well.

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Gambling ads could be banned in Australia. Kate knows firsthand the cost of addiction.

Kate Seselja vividly remembers the first time she played pokies. She was 18 years old and at a local club that had countless numbers of poker machines.

"At this time in the late '90s, NSW had rapidly become the pokies capital of Australia. It was something we would do socially with friends. But once it came on my radar, and I started using them and it quickly got out of hand," Kate tells Mamamia.

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Kate lost $500,000 in 12 years. Would a cashless gaming card have made a difference?

Gambling reform is shaping up as a major NSW election issue.

We've heard from politicians explaining their policies, as well as advocates and researchers, but what about someone who has been in the grip of poker machine addiction?

Businesswoman and mother of six, Kate Seselja, lost $500,000 in 12 years. Would a cashless gaming card and limits have helped her?

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Overcoming Gambling Addiction with Kate Seselja

Did you know Australia is the Poker machine capital of the world!?Gambling addiction is a hidden struggle that affects countless individuals worldwide.  The allure of winning, the excitement of risk-taking, and the illusion of control can quickly spiral into an all-consuming compulsion.  Join me as I chat with Kate Seselja about her journey from gambling addict to recovery coach.  We shed light on the often invisible nature of this addiction, and the importance of seeking support, and the profound impact of gambling addiction on individuals and their families.

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How Women Became The Real Victims Of Australia's Deadly Gambling Epidemic

Kate Seselja was 18 years old when she first played a poker machine. The receptionist was in an RSL club in Sydney with her boyfriend, and as he gambled on one of the many pokies there she played a neighbouring machine on a whim of “why not?” Depositing $20, she hit the button and watched as the symbols on the reels matched up. In a stroke of beginner’s luck she had won $100. “I was like, ‘Oh my gosh, that was so easy!’” she recalls. By the end of the night, Kate was up nearly $1000. “A woman came over with a clipboard and the cash and gave it to me,” she tells marie claire. “It was an overwhelming experience. She said, ‘Wow, you’re so good at this!’ ”

Image by Amber Martin

How I Can Help You

Image by Unseen Studio






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Book Kate

to speak

“We invited Kate Seselja to speak to our year 10 and VCAL students for 2 separate presentations on the effects of gambling, apps and gambling related issues.
On both occasions Kate was extremely engaging, insightful and very well prepared. Not only was the information presented to our students relevant and current but it really brought home how harmful gambling can be and its effect on our younger populations.
She connected extremely well with our students. Kate is very highly recommended and we have no hesitation in organising a repeat visit next year to talk to our combined senior school.”

Flinders Christian College

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