Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) recognizes UBC’s inspirational leadership, innovation and excellence in maintaining and improving mental health in the workplace by presenting UBC with its annual Clarence M. Hincks award for UBC’s inspirational leadership, innovation and excellence in maintaining and improving mental health for all.
Clarence Hincks was one of the founders of the 98-year-old CMHA, in his time an agent of change, and UBC impressed the award committee with its game-changing mental health programs.
UBC provides a number of mental health initiatives for students, staff,and faculty, including Thrive Week, which encourages mental well-being through dialogue, awareness, healthy choices, social support and normalizing mental health challenges.
Last year, Thrive reached more than 35,000 faculty, staff and students.Reception has been exceptional, as 66 per cent of faculty and staff believe that Thrive promotes a positive campus environment and 73 per cent feel that they have a better understanding of positive mental health as a result of participating in the program. Perhaps most telling, in 2015 10 universities followed UBC’s lead and held Thrive events of their own.
“The WOW factor for us was Thrive Week,” said Sarika Gundu, National Director of CMHA’s Workplace Mental Health Program. “This one positive mental health initiative created a chain reaction of positive change, impacting thousands of lives. If one university can do this imagine what one more workplace can do.”
This year’s Hincks award was given to UBC by the CMHA’s Sarika Gundu and a representative of last year’s award winner, Lyne Wilson, Director of HR and Employee Relations at NAV Canada, the national air traffic control organization. Accepting the award were health and wellbeing coordinators Tracey Hawthorn and Miranda Massie of UBC.