UBC Okanagan earns WorkLife BC Award of Merit

Creating a flexible workplace that supports employees to balance work and life commitments has earned UBC Okanagan a WorkLife BC Award from the Ministry of Children and Family Development.

The award was presented at a ceremony in Vancouver this afternoon, accepted on behalf of UBC Okanagan by Leanne Bilodeau, who leads UBC Okanagan’s Healthy Workplace Culture Strategy. UBC Okanagan received an Award of Merit for the B.C. Interior, in the category of Large Workplace with more than 250 employees.

"This award recognizes employers who have developed workplaces that support their employees to balance commitments to work and family," says Alaa Abd-El-Aziz, UBC Okanagan Provost and co-chair of the campus Healthy Workplace Culture Advisory Group. "Receiving this award distinguishes UBC Okanagan as an emerging leader in promoting work-life balance."

"Employers that support healthy workplaces know how important this is for recruiting, retaining and fully engaging employees," says Bilodeau. "Our entire campus community is working together to create a workplace culture that supports the wellbeing of our faculty, staff and students - and an important part of this is to encourage people to find balance in their lives."

UBC Okanagan encourages work-life balance through policies, programs and services such as:

  • Flexible work schedules, including job sharing, telecommuting and education leave
  • Support for child care, including an on-campus daycare, and elder care needs
  • A confidential counseling service available to faculty and staff and family or household members to help out with any problem that affects their family life, work or general well-being

An annual day-long Health Symposium for all faculty and staff offers health screening and seminars on topics such as learning how to reclaim your time, and achieving work-life balance. This year’s symposium, on Feb. 19, features keynote presentations by wellness expert Dr. Martin Collis and work-life harmony expert Nora Spinks.

"This year’s theme is Our Community, Our Culture," says Bilodeau. "It’s about creating the type of environment or culture that supports our aspirations and enhances the overall health, wellbeing and experience of our faculty, staff and students."

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