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How to Organize a Workplace Health Fair

Phase III - Planning

Finally – the step you’ve been waiting for!  If you have already started planning, take some time to go back and complete Phases I and II.

Step 1- Open Your Calendar

Set the Date

  • Be sure the date doesn’t conflict with any other workplace events
  • Mid-week is usually ideal
  • Avoid peak vacation times
  • If you have more than one site, are you going to set a date for each site?
  • Consider piggybacking on to an existing health promotion day/event

    • Heart & Stroke Month (February)
    • National Occupational Health & Safety Week (May)
    • Healthy Workplace Month (October)

Set the Time

  • Health Fairs are usually held mid-day for approximately 4-6 hours
  • Attendance will be better if you try to accommodate all shifts
  • Work with management to ensure employees are given time to attend

Pick a location

  • Choose a high traffic area, easily accessible by all employees and large enough to accommodate all booths
  • Make sure you have adequate lighting and electrical outlets
  • Examples: Cafeteria, large foyer or hallway, large meeting room

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Step 2 - The Fair Content

Choose a theme

Before selecting a theme, consider the goals and objectives of the fair, as well as the organization’s philosophy or mission statement. Select a theme that will attract attention. For example, “Investing in Employee Health” would be a good theme for a financial institution.

Choose the content

Based upon the goals and objectives you have set for the health fair as well as your organizational scan, consider which community agencies, voluntary organizations, for-profit and non-profit organizations you would like to invite to your health fair. The Peel Community Information Database lists agencies in and around Peel Region available to help.

Don’t forget to identify departments within your organization (e.g. HR, food service provider, EAP, Health & Safety, etc.) that should contribute to the fair. 

Confirm content & exhibitor needs

  • What type of information they will be sharing?
  • How will the material be presented (display, brochures, demonstration)?
  • What is the title of their display?
  • Does your exhibitor have a floor or tabletop display?
  • What size is the display?
  • Does your exhibitor need a table? If yes, what size do they prefer?
  • Is there a need for an electrical outlet?

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Step 3 - Promotion

Create a marketing plan. Promotion is very important for generating awareness, interest and excitement about your event. You should begin promoting at least 4 weeks before the event.

While word of mouth is the best means of advertising, try to use as many of the following to promote your event:

  • Intranet banner/story
  • Voice-mail
  • E-mail
  • Company newsletter
  • Banners/Posters
  • Announcements at employee meetings
  • Pay cheque insert
  • Flyers on everyone’s desk the morning of the event

When considering how to advertise the event, it is also important to consider:

  • Offering incentives to participants
  • Promoting the incentives
  • Placement of posters and banners (i.e. in highly visible locations)
  • How to inform employees who work off-site of the event

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Step 4 - The Logistics

Staffing

  • Know if the display will be staffed and by whom
  • Assign tasks to your volunteers

    • Set-up of the event
    • Exhibitor greeter & aide
    • Someone to move traffic and greet staff
    • Tear-down & clean-up

Floor plan

  • Draft a floor plan
  • Be mindful of the ease of traffic flow
  • Outline where each display will be set up

    • Note the location of electrical outlets and assign those areas according to need
    • Ensure each display is allotted enough space (consider width and height)

Assess your equipment needs

  • Prepare a list of the equipment you will require
  • Tables (how many and what sizes)
  • Chairs
  • LCD projectors
  • Extension cords
  • Be sure to reserve all equipment and rooms well in advance

Adapted from: Canada’s Healthy Workplace Month website

Next: Phase IV - Evaluation

[ Back to How to Organize a Workplace Health Fair ]

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Revised: June 09, 2011

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