The Okanagan Charter
UBC Wellbeing is guided by the Okanagan Charter: An International Charter for Health Promoting University and Colleges, which calls upon post-secondary schools to embed health into all aspects of campus culture and to lead health promotion action and collaboration locally and globally.
A Framework for Wellbeing
In June 2015, UBC co-hosted the International Conference on Health Promoting Universities and Colleges at the Okanagan campus, bringing together participants from 45 countries, representing both educational institutions and health organizations, including the World Health Organization and UNESCO. Over three days, these organizations collaborated on the development of the Okanagan Charter: An International Charter for Health Promoting Universities and Colleges.
The Okanagan Charter provides institutions with a common language, principles and framework to become a ‘health and wellbeing promoting campus’ and outlines two Calls to Action:
- To embed health into all aspects of campus culture, across the administration, operations and academic mandates;
- To lead health promotion action and collaboration locally and globally.
These two Calls to Action guide the UBC Wellbeing approach, and are the foundations of creating wellbeing for all of our communities.
Committing to Wellbeing
“I am proud of UBC and our partner universities for taking steps to strengthen our communities, both on and off campus.”- Professor Santa J. Ono.
In October 2016 UBC proudly became one of the first universities in the world to adopt the Okanagan Charter, jointly signing alongside five other Canadian universities and signaling a formal commitment to supporting wellbeing on our campuses. This commitment sends a powerful message about the type of institution that UBC aspires to be—one that excels in teaching, learning and research and recognizes that this excellence is supported by the wellbeing of our people and places.
Missed out on this momentous occasion? Read about it on the UBC Public Affairs website.
Leading Locally and Globally
“Health promoting universities and colleges transform the health and sustainability of our current and future societies, strengthen communities, and contribute to the wellbeing of people, places and the planet.” - The Okanagan Charter
Universities and colleges are in a unique position to inform health and wellbeing knowledge, education and research through engaging students, leading by example and advocating to decision makers. UBC wants to be a leader in championing wellbeing on university and college campuses, and in collaboration with the recently-formed Canadian Health Promoting Universities and Colleges Network and international networks of higher education institutions, we are leading efforts to put the Okanagan Charter into action and develop a process for institutional commitments.
Want to join the movement of Canadian colleges and universities committed to creating health promoting campuses? Visit the Canadian Health Promoting Universities and Colleges Network website.