Healthy Workplace Initiatives Fund Program

The Healthy Workplace Initiatives Fund Program is an annual fund available to UBC departments and units to support grassroots activities that promote wellbeing in the workplace.

About the Healthy Workplace Initiatives Fund Program (HWIP)

Guided by the Focus on People (FoP) Framework, Strategy 1: “To develop a sustainable, healthy workplace”, the purpose of this initiative is to develop a program, supported by funding, to which departments can apply to support healthy workplace initiatives and share examples of good practice, The program provides start-up funds and support for health-related, sustainable initiatives. 

Purpose of the funding

  • Provide a de-centralized approach to promoting health and wellbeing 
  • To enable units and departments to create and maintain healthy work environments
  • Intended to build capacity and knowledge within units 
  • To support the introduction of healthy initiatives intended to be adopted long-term by the department


Any Vancouver or Okanagan UBC department/unit or UBC-recognized operational committees that represent various departments/units are eligible to apply for funding.

Application Criteria

  • Applications must demonstrate a commitment to wellbeing in your workplace and focus on the promotion of healthy behaviours to reduce or prevent long-term illness, chronic disease, or injuries;
  • Effective health initiatives should involve more than one-time workshops, programs, events or team socials. They must encompass a multi-pronged approach aimed at promoting wellbeing, reducing barriers and increasing opportunities for UBC staff and faculty to implement healthy behaviours;
  • Endorsement(s) from the departmental director(s) or head(s) of unit(s) is required, 
  • Initiatives should be inclusive of a range of abilities and perspectives;
  • Are accompanied by a long-term plan to sustain the initiative on a continuing basis after the funding period.  Applicants should outline how they expect this initiative to continue after the one-year HWIP funding period has finished.
  • Activities that benefit faculty, staff and postdoctoral fellows

Funding exclusions 

  • One-time workshops, programs, or events will not be funded. 
  • Operational expenses (hiring of faculty/staff as instructors or to coordinate the program, items that fall within the responsibility of the department to provide)
  • To conduct primarily research-oriented activities; 
  • For building renovations, furniture, or large-scale fitness equipment.

*Previous HWIP recipients are welcome to apply again however, priority will be given to departments and units that have not received funding in previous rounds.

Past  HWIP program and Initiative ideas

The next HWIP funding round opens on March 2024

*Sign up for the monthly Healthy UBC e-Newsletter to stay informed about the next round of HWIP applications

application Process 
 Each department may submit one application per year and successful applications are selected on a lottery basis until the available funding is exhausted.  All applicants will be notified within two weeks of the application deadline.

Previous HWIP recipients are welcome to apply again however, priority will be given to departments and units that have not received funding in previous rounds.

If your department is approved for Healthy Workplace Initiative funding, you must use the funds within one year.

The fund is based on a reimbursement model.  All successful departments will need to cover the cost of the initiatives upfront and then submit receipts for reimbursement.

How to apply:

Review and select one of the eight funding areas 

Complete the online application form ( sample application form

Submit senior leader sign-off (you will receive a confirmation email containing instructions)


Making the case to your department?

If you are looking for information for supervisors or managers to support an application for a healthy workplace initiative, we’re here to help!  See below for helpful tools and resources.

Investing in workplace health is a sound investment. Studies show the following benefits of workplace health initiatives:

  • Physical exercise, actively working on time management and increased social time help improve occupation stress (particularly among faculty). [1]
  • Active promotion of physical activity and health-related activities in the workplace reduces absenteeism and increases the overall mental health of employees. [2] [3]
  • In Canada, the majority of workplace health programs aim to improve outcomes related to employee stress, work-life balance and depression. [4]
  • Top priorities in Canadian workplaces include 1) developing workplace cultures where individuals are responsible for their health and 2) improving the mental health of employees. [5]

Making the Case for Managers (to help senior leaders understand the benefits of participation)
Evidence to support workplace health initiatives
Access your units Workplace Experience Survey data

2022 Funding Recipients

Congratulations to the 58 departments and units that will be rolling out health and wellbeing programs in 2022!


DepartmentWorksiteHWIP Initiative
Alex Fraser Research ForestOtherCommunity Garden
Arts Academic AdvisingPoint GreyCommunity Garden
Asian Canadian and Asian Migration Studies, Faculty of ArtsPoint GreyYoga/Fitness Classes
Asian LibraryPoint GreyYoga/Fitness Classes
Athletics & RecreationOkanaganTeam Health Challenge
Athletics & Recreation - Aquatic CentrePoint GreyTeam Health Challenge
Centre for Teaching and LearningOkanaganNutrition and Healthy Eating
Chan Centre for the Performing ArtsPoint GreyYoga/Fitness Classes
Civil EngineeringPoint GreyInnovative New Idea
Counselling ServicesPoint GreyInnovative New Idea
Department of Medicine - Centre of Menstrual Cycle and Ovulation ResearchVGH/Diamond CentreTeam Health Challenge
Development & Alumni Engagement - Faculty of MedicinePoint GreyNutrition and Healthy Eating
Division of Palliative Care/Department of MedicinePoint GreyInnovative New Idea
Division of Respiratory Medicine, Centre for Lung HealthVGH/Diamond CentreMental Health Training
Exceptional Workplace Team - UBC LibraryPoint GreyInnovative New Idea
Faculty of Medicine-Evaluation Studies UnitPoint GreyNutrition and Healthy Eating
Faculty of Medicine-Vancouver Coastal Health Research InstituteVGH/Diamond CentreTeam Health Challenge
Financial OperationsPoint GreyNutrition and Healthy Eating
French, Hispanic and Italian StudiesPoint GreyTeam Health Challenge
Human ResourcesOkanaganTeam Health Challenge
Institute for the Oceans and FisheriesPoint GreyCommunity Garden
Integrated Service Centre (ISC)Point GreyArt and Creative Expression
Internal CommunicationsPoint GreyArt and Creative Expression
Learning & Talent Development, Human ResourcesPoint GreyYoga/Fitness Classes
MathematicsPoint GreyNutrition and Healthy Eating
Michael Smith LaboratoriesPoint GreyYoga/Fitness Classes
Postgraduate Medical EducationVGH/Diamond CentreYoga/Fitness Classes
Robert H. Lee Graduate School - Recruitment and Admissions TeamPoint GreyTeam Health Challenge
Sauder School of Business, Hari B. Varshney Business Career CentrePoint GreyInnovative New Idea
School of Audiology and Speech SciencesPoint GreyTeam Health Challenge
Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Inclusive Education (SOGI UBC) - Faculty of EducationPoint GreyInnovative New Idea
Strategy and Decision SupportPoint GreyYoga/Fitness Classes
UBC Arts Co-opPoint GreyInnovative New Idea
UBC Okanagan Equity & Inclusion OfficeOkanaganInnovative New Idea
University-Industry Liaison Office - VP Research and InnovationPoint GreyInnovative New Idea

Fall 2022

alumni UBCPoint GreyYoga/Fitness Classes
APSC - School of EngineeringOkanaganInnovative New Idea
Centre for Blood ResearchPoint GreyTeam Health Challenge
Centre for Heart Lung InnovationOtherInnovative New Idea
Conferences & AccommodationPoint GreyYoga/Fitness Classes
Data Science InstitutePoint GreyNutrition and Healthy Eating
Department of RadiologyVGH/Diamond CentreArt and Creative Expression
Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Principals Office (UNITED WAY Campaign)OkanaganInnovative New Idea
Djavad Mowafaghian Centre for Brain HealthPoint GreyInnovative New Idea
Engineering Academic ServicesPoint GreyInnovative New Idea
English Language & LiteraturePoint GreyArt and Creative Expression
Facilities / Customer Services and InformaticsPoint GreyYoga/Fitness Classes
Faculty of Land and Food Systems Student ServicesPoint GreyArt and Creative Expression
Financial Planning and AnalysisPoint GreyNutrition and Healthy Eating
Go Global: International Learning Programs, Office of the Vice-Provost, InternationalPoint GreyNutrition and Healthy Eating
Office of Enterprise Risk & AssurancePoint GreyInnovative New Idea
Office of Regional and International Community EngagementPoint GreyCommunity Garden
Post Graduate Medical Education- Basic Clinical Year Training ProgramOtherYoga/Fitness Classes
SurgeryVGH/Diamond CentreTeam Health Challenge
Sustainability HubPoint GreyInnovative New Idea
Transformation and Change Management Team, Integrated Renewal Program Student, OkanaganOkanaganArt and Creative Expression
UBC Okanagan LibraryOkanaganInnovative New Idea
ZoologyPoint GreyYoga/Fitness Classes


Sign up for the monthly Healthy UBC e-Newsletter to stay informed about HWIP criteria and application deadlines.

For more information please contact Truelove Twumasi, Workplace Wellbeing Programs Specialist:

[1] Arabia, S., Kokash, H. & Arabia, S. Faculty Perception of Stress and Coping Strategies in a Saudi Private University?: An Exploratory Study. Can. Cent. Sci. Educ. 4, 137–149 (2011).
[2] Bhui, K. S., Dinos, S., Stansfeld, S. A. & White, P. D. A Synthesis of the Evidence for Managing Stress at Work: A Review of the Reviews Reporting on Anxiety, Depression, and Absenteeism. J. Environ. Public Health 2012, 1–21 (2012).
[3] Chu, A. H. Y., Koh, D., Moy, F. M. & Muller-Riemenschneider, F. Do workplace physical activity interventions improve mental health outcomes? Occup. Med. (Chic. Ill). 64, 235–245 (2014).
[4] Buck Consultants, Working Well: A Global Survey Of Health Promotion And Workplace Wellness Strategies. 2009. Print. Executive Summary.
[5] Towers Watson, Trends And Directions On Workforce Health And Productivity. 2014. Print. 2013/2014 Staying at Work Survey

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