The Okanagan Charter is a document that was published in 2015. It was produced in collaboration of many universities who convened in Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada for the International Conference on Health Promoting Universities and Colleges to discuss what makes a health promoting university. This is the result. In Aotearoa, we have used this charter as a base for our own interpretation of what it means to be a health promoting university.
The Charter can be viewed here.
This academic paper was written by two of our executive members, Craig Waterworth and Anna Thorpe. Published in 2017, it can be viewed in the Journal of the Australia and New Zealand Student Services Association. It outlines how the Okanagan Charter could be implemented in the New Zealand context. Abstract is below.
Abstract: In 2015 the International Conference on Health Promoting Universities and Colleges was held in the Okanagan, Canada. At this conference, a new international charter focusing on health promotion in tertiary education was ratified. The Okanagan Charter was developed with input from 45 countries,including Aotearoa New Zealand and Australia. The Okanagan Charter builds on existing charters and declarations to apply health, wellbeing and sustainability to tertiary settings. This paper outlines how the Okanagan Charter relates to health promotion approaches that are used in Aotearoa New Zealand in higher (tertiary) education for the benefit of students, staff and stakeholders. The principles and action areas of the Okanagan Charter are discussed in their application to health promotion practice in the higher education setting of Aotearoa New Zealand.
After much public consultation, this practical guide was launched in 2018 by the TWANZ national executive to assist universities, polytechnics, institutes of technology, wānanga and other tertiary education providers in understanding and activating the 2015 Okanagan Charter.
The guide applies wellbeing frameworks developed in Aotearoa New Zealand to the Okanagan Charter and offers a range of examples, measurement suggestions and guiding questions to assist embedding health and wellbeing on campus.
It is the first known guide to apply the Okanagan Charter to a local context.
The guide is available here.
"Health promotion in higher education is receiving greater attention with the recent development of the Okanagan Charter, an international health promotion charter for universities and colleges... The report provides a snapshot of health and wellbeing initiatives currently operational within the seven higher education institutions surveyed and aims to share examples of good practice and suggestions for further alignment with the Okanagan Charter."
Full report available here