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BC Museums Association Wins National Charity Village Award for Workplace Mental Health

The British Columbia Museums Association (BCMA) was named Canada’s Best Nonprofit Employer – Workplace Mental Health (Under 20 Staff) in the third annual Charity Village Awards. More than 300 nominations were submitted in 19 categories to this national recognition program and the results were announced at the 2023 Charity Village conference. 

Runners-up in this category included the Mental Health Foundation of Nova Scotia, Work Wellness Institute, Oshawa-Durham Rape Crisis Centre, and WaterAid Canada being named as runners-up. The BCMA was recognized for its dedication to supporting the health and well-being of its staff and for modelling a commitment to workplace wellness to its more than 450 members through initiatives such as:

  • Offering flexible work schedules to support staff’s diverse schedules, needs, and working styles. 
  • Adopting Animikii’s open-source “Substituting Statutory Holidays” policy, allowing team members to choose which statutory holidays they recognize, giving them the ability to replace colonial commemorative events and Christian calendar holidays with culturally appropriate holidays.
  • Working with its volunteer board to collaboratively develop a new Human Relationships policy in 2023 that includes measures like full salary transparency within the organization, vacation banking, and unlimited sick leave.
  • Free access to Red Cross Psychological First Aid training for any interested staff members.
  • Becoming a certified Living Wage Employer in 2023.

Wellness and Mental Health Resources for Cultural and Heritage Professionals

In late 2021, the BCMA conducted  a COVID-19 Impact and Recovery Sector survey. As part of this survey, respondents provided some insight into the mental health of museum workers during the ongoing pandemic and requested resources addressing common concerns such as living wages, job security, and support systems.

“While the recognition this award provides is meaningful, having every single member of our team enthusiastically support our application to the Charity Village Awards program means the world to me,” said Ryan Hunt, BCMA Executive Director. “In a sector that struggles with burnout, task saturation, and toxic working conditions, it is critical that a professional association like the BCMA tries to live the values we advocate for.”

More than 300 nominations were received by Charity Village from organizations and individuals across Canada. The top five finalists from each category can be viewed on their website.


For more information please contact:

Ryan Hunt, BC Museums Association Executive Director


Listen to the Charity Village podcast featuring their 2023 award winners. BCMA Program Manager, Lorenda Calvert, speaks on being featured in the nomination.

About the BC Museums Association: 

Founded in 1957, the British Columbia Museums Association (BCMA) creates a bright future for British Columbia’s museum, gallery, and related heritage communities through networking, advocacy, innovation, and professional development. Since our founding, the BCMA has grown to include more than 450 members in every corner of the province representing museums, art galleries, science centres, Indigenous cultural organizations, heritage sites, botanical and zoological gardens, cultural centres, conservation institutes, exhibition galleries permanently maintained by libraries and archives, and nature reserves.