A year after six Canadian campuses were the first to adopt the Okanagan Charter: An International Charter for Health Promoting Universities and Colleges (the Charter), four leading organizations endorsed it.
The Canadian Association of College and University Student Services (CACUSS), CMHA BC, Healthy Campus Alberta, and the National Intramural-Recreational Sports Association (NIRSA) were the first to officially endorse the Charter, as a show of support, and to encourage their communities of practice to join the conversation.
Representatives from CACUSS, CMHA BC, Healthy Campus Alberta, and NIRSA took part in a joint announcement endorsing the Charter at the Centre for Innovation in Campus Mental Health (CICMH) annual conference in Toronto, ON, on October 31, 2017, to mark the one-year anniversary of the initial signing.
The Charter was developed collaboratively in 2015 by participants from 45 different countries representing post-secondary institutions and organizations, such as United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the Pan American Health Organization.
Research shows that health and well-being are essential to learning, retention, productivity, satisfaction, and building a sense of community. Post-secondary institutions have a unique opportunity to promote well-being through education, research, policies, and practices, and the Charter provides a common framework to foster environments where all campus members can thrive.
With the endorsement, CMHA BC commits to: share in the vision of the Charter; support the implementation of the two Calls to Action; and inform and support these efforts by participating in local, regional, national, or international networks to implement the Charter.
Read CMHA BC’s Statement of Endorsement here.