Form a health and well-being team or working group to guide the process

The team should be representative of your unit’s population. The members of this team will effectively serve as well-being ‘champions’ within your unit, who can lead the process and disseminate wellness information.

Steps to creating a health and well-being team

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    Step 1: Identify the team leaders

    Having passionate and dedicated people to lead the health and well-being team will support the sustainability of the initiative and create exciting momentum.

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    Step 2: Recruit team members

    The group should be large enough for the work to be manageable by the members, but small enough to be able to effectively move initiatives forward. We recommend approximately three-10 members, depending on the size of your unit.

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    Step 3: Establish team procedures and ground rules

    This may include establishing the Terms of Reference, meeting frequency and length, agenda, roles within the team, etc.

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    Step 4: Schedule the initial meeting

    Use your meeting time to assign people roles and set team goals.

Determine your unit’s vision

Gather information from the members of your community

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    What is needed? What are the challenges your unit faces?

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    What do you have already that works? What needs improvement?

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    Where are the gaps?

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    What is your one-year goal in regards to well-being? Two years? Five years?


  • VMOSA (Vision, Mission, Objectives, Strategies, and Action Plans) is a practical planning process to help groups define a vision and develop practical ways to enact change.
  • The SMART goals framework (PDF) is built for strategic goal-setting to help you identify concrete and measurable goals within your action plan.

One way of doing this is through a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) Analysis, which is a planning tool that allows you to build awareness of both the strengths and weaknesses (or challenges) that are unique to your unit, and create a plan to address identified weaknesses and create new capabilities.

Contact Arlana Vadnais, Campus Mental Health Facilitator, at to ask about a strategic planning workshop for your unit that uses both VMOSA and SWOT.

Implement your action plan


If you have multiple goals, you may need to prioritize. Your team should choose a manageable number of goals to tackle first, recognizing that they are all important, but that some may be more urgent or more doable.


  • What will have the highest impact?
  • What is the group's greatest need?

Operationalize (Plan)

  • Determine specific actions based on the prioritized goals.
  • What specific change, initiative or action is needed to realize each goal?
  • Determine the logistics of putting the prioritized initiatives into action, including resources needed.
  • You may want to create smaller teams, engaging people from both in and outside the working group. Spread the work around so that a few individuals (well-meaning and passionate though they may be!) do not end up doing all the work.

Implement actions/initiatives

Once your team has gathered the information about your unit/group's priorities and needs for mental health and well-being, it is time to take action. Start with prioritizing action items and initiatives, and then take action accordingly. Build in a process to evaluate for continuous improvement and sustainability.

Evaluate and sustain

Evaluate the action and determine next steps, changes or improvements. Once the initiative has been in place for an appropriate amount of time, evaluate it to determine its effectiveness by asking:

  • Is it completed and time to move on to another priority?
  • If it is an ongoing initiative, has it achieved what you hoped it would?
  • Has feedback or your assessment indicated that changes are needed?

Sustaining a plan refers to both the capacity to continue the initiative and the potential for mental health and well-being initiatives to become a natural part of your unit’s operations.

Evaluate overall strategic implementation and re-engage the process (start at step a again). Ideally the actions taken will become part of the regular every-day operations of the unit, and you can then turn to examining your next priorities. Find out more by reviewing the Strategic Review and Evaluation Discussion Template and the tools found here.

Tools for evaluation

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Mental Health on Campus