Okanagan Charter

UC Berkeley Adopts Okanagan Charter

UC Berkeley is part of the first group of U.S. universities to adopt the Okanagan Charter

UC Berkeley is one of eight U.S. universities to have formally adopted the Okanagan Charter: An International Charter for Health Promoting Universities and Colleges, which focuses on embedding health and well-being into all aspects of the campus community. Health Promoting Universities is an international community that aspires to transform the health and sustainability of current and future societies, strengthen communities, and contribute to the well-being of people, places, and the planet. Evidence shows that people who are well are more productive, are better able to engage in deeper learning, have a greater sense of belonging, and have a stronger sense of community.

About the Okanagan Charter: The Okanagan Charter is a guiding and aspirational document that was developed as an outcome of the 2015 International Conference on Health Promoting Universities & Colleges. Its purpose is to guide colleges and universities – using their unique positions and roles in research, teaching, and service to their communities – in becoming leaders for the world in developing and modeling health-promoting strategies in their campus settings. Local communities could then learn from their examples and modeling, thus influencing global health and well-being strategies. 

Action Framework and Berkeley Examples

Embed Health in All Campus Policies

Review, create and coordinate campus policies and practices with attention to health, well-being and sustainability, so that all planning and decision-making takes account of and supports the flourishing of people, campuses, communities and our planet. 

Create Supportive Campus Environments

Enhance the campus environment as a living laboratory, identifying opportunities to study and support health and wellbeing, as well as sustainability and resilience in the built, natural, social, economic, cultural, academic, organizational, and learning environments. 

Generate Thriving Communities & a Culture of Well-Being 

Be proactive and intentional in creating empowered, connected, and resilient campus communities that foster an ethic of care, compassion, collaboration, and community action. 

Support Personal Development

Develop and create opportunities to build student, staff, and faculty resilience, competence, personal capacity, and life-enhancing skills – and so support them to thrive and achieve their full potential and become engaged local and global citizens while respecting the environment. 

Create or Re-Orient Campus Services

Coordinate and design campus services to support equitable access, enhance health and well-being, optimize human and ecosystem potential, and promote a supportive organizational culture. 

“With the adoption of the Okanagan Charter at UC Berkeley, we are committed to continuing to transform Berkeley’s vision for campus well-being, including embedding health into all aspects of campus culture, across the administration, operations, academics and the student and staff experience. And increasing the dialogue and research with others that informs health, equity, sustainability, and wellbeing initiatives both on campus settings and in broader society.” 

Guy Nicolette, M.D., CAQSM, Associate Vice Chancellor

University Health Services

Guy Nicolette and Chancellor Carol Christ signing of Okanagan Charter

August 2021, Chancellor Carol Christ and Guy Nicolette, Assistant Vice Chancellor for University Health Servies signing the Okanagan Charter.

flyer of UC berkeley's Okanagan Charter commitments