North Island College Adopts Okanagan Charter

NIC officially launched the Okanagan Charter, the College’s commitment to mental health and well-being, on Oct. 5.

“NIC is known for the level of care it provides to students and the college community,” said John Bowman, President of NIC. “I’m very proud to sign the Charter, which is an opportunity to further embed health and well-being into our campus culture and be a leader in health promotion collaboration locally and globally. It will strengthen our commitment to student and community well-being in everything we do.”

NIC formally signed the Okanagan Charter: An International Charter for Health Promoting Universities and Colleges in May 2020, but the community was unable to come together in the early stages of the pandemic. Instead, it chose to celebrate in a ceremonial signing as the first event in its Mental Health and Awareness Week (Oct. 5-9, 2020).

“Signing the Charter during a pandemic, is very significant,” said Felicity Blaiklock, NIC’s Director of Student Affairs. “As we adapt to the digital environment, we need students and employees to know that all the acts of kindness, connection, supports and services they have come to expect from NIC are still available and part of what makes our College unique.”

With its signing in May, NIC became the 21st post-secondary institution across Canada and one of the first colleges in BC to endorse the Charter since it was first developed in 2015.

In the past year, NIC has established several commitments to health and well-being, including in its strategic planning process, developing a campus-wide Mental Health and Well-Being Action Plan, establishing culturally relevant systems and tools to connect students with campus and community resources, and coordinating health and well-being programming across campuses. NIC is also committed to further embedding student health and well-being supports in courses and programs.

Learn more about the Okanagan Charter as well as services and supports at NIC.

Learn more about Mental Health Week at NIC.

Original article from North Island College