CARE Grants

The application grant for CARE Grants is now closed. We received a total of 14 applications for this pilot grant funding, and we are delighted to be supporting 10 innovative projects to support the health and well-being of our NIC campus communities. A total of $6300 was awarded for projects on each of the 4 main campuses. Look out for further updates on these projects, and the chance to apply for a CARE Grant in 2022.

Applications open for CARE (Compassion-Accessibility-Resilience-Engagement) Grants.

NIC recognizes that mental health is a core component of success for both individuals and communities and that post-secondary institutions are uniquely positioned to provide leadership in the promotion of health and well-being. 

In January 2021, NIC was awarded one-time funding from the Canadian Mental Health Association’s BC Division (CMHA BC), in partnership with BC’s Ministry of Mental Health and Addictions (MMHA), to be used towards suicide prevention and the promotion of mental health and well-being on campus.

A portion of this funding has been allocated to the creation of two grants to help support and fund faculty and staff in the promotion and enhancement of mental health and well-being:

  1. The CARE Teaching and Learning Grant may be used for expenses related to the enhancement or promotion of mental health and well-being in a teaching and learning environment.
  2. The CARE Campus Community Grant may be used for expenses related to the enhancement or promotion of mental health and well-being in the NIC campus community.

This is a pilot grant program for the 2021/22 academic year. Grants will be offered up to the amount of $1500 per initiative (smaller amounts can be requested). Total funding available (for both grants) is $3000.

Granting Goals

Initiatives should enhance and promote mental health and well-being. Preference will be given to projects that:

  1. Align with the NIC Mental Health and Well-being Action Plan* priority values of:
    • Care and Compassion
      Care, in the form of supports and services, and compassion, in the form of kindness and interpersonal connections influence academic and personal success.
    • Education
      Education is at NIC’s core. We recognize that PSIs have both the opportunity and responsibility to provide transformative learning opportunities for all members of the NIC community.
    • Engagement/connection
      Social connection and engagement are fundamental human needs and contribute significantly to mental health and well-being.
    • Equity, Diversity and Inclusion
      An institution that recognizes and celebrates diversity, and which is authentically inclusive and equitable, is more likely to foster mental health and well-being.
    • Resilience and Capacity-building
      In addition to providing supports for those in distress, developing resiliency, self-coping skills and the ability to self-advocate are all vital to on-going mental health.
    * (Currently in development as of March 2021)
  2. Align with the Okanagan Charter Calls to Action to:
    • Embed health into all aspects of campus culture, across the administration, operations and academic mandates.
    • Lead health promotion action and collaboration locally and globally.
  3. Benefit several campus communities.
  4. Are sustainable beyond the life of the grant.
  5. Include interdisciplinary/interdepartmental collaboration.

Suggested Projects

Examples of projects include (but are not limited to):

  • Host a conversation and/or book club with colleagues on how to reduce stress in the teaching and learning environment (purchase of books).
  • Encourage health and well-being in digital classrooms (incentives (prizes/rewards) for movement breaks, study groups etc.
  • Create an orientation event for students entering your program or department (promotion materials).
  • Create a handout or ‘case book’ on creating conditions for well-being in learning environments.
  • Bring in a guest speaker.
  • Offer team or strength-based inventory assessments to help groups form and function smoothly.
  • Offer or take intercultural competency training.
  • Provide free fruit and healthy snack options in staff areas on campus every Monday (e.g.).
  • Enhance the workplace with a piece of student or local art or with stencils of ‘welcome’ in other languages.
  • ‘Gamify’ wellness: start a virtual exercise campaign with prizes e.g. ‘a virtual walk/cycle across BC’.
  • Offer incentive(s) for students who practice well-being and self-care (and share with others).
  • Provide resources related to balance, resilience and healthy lifestyles.
  • Create a class or work-based team to support a charity event.


All NIC employees (full time, part time and sessional) are eligible to apply for these grants. Each application will require approval from a supervisor.

Note: Applicants cannot apply for the CARE TL and CARE CC Grants for the same initiative.

Eligible Expenses

  1. Materials and supplies.
  2. Promotional materials.
  3. Other expenses (including equipment) with approval from Director, Student Affairs.


Please submit applications by May 31, 2021 for fall 2021 or winter 2022 funding.

The applications will be reviewed by a sub-committee under the direction of the Director, Student Affairs. 

Successful applicants will be informed by June 14, 2021.