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December 1, 2015 Amelia Wilcox

3 Ways Non-Profits Can Budget for Office Chair Massages

It’s often the people who most need a therapeutic massage who don’t get one. Teachers, nurses, and employees at non-profits come to mind. It’s not that the interest isn’t there. It’s because these dedicated workers spend so much time and energy helping other people, that their own needs get pushed to the back burner. 

For non-profit workers, funding can be the main barrier. Because of how non-profit organizations are financially structured, it can be much more difficult to set money aside for employee massages.

employee massage for nonprofits

Office Massage for Non-Profit Organizations

So much in the non-profit world revolves around finding, keeping, and documenting all the funding for programs and services. So how can a non-profit organization find the funding to bring office chair massage to their employees?

The most important aspect of chair massage for non-profits is to ensure the program is funded properly. The last thing an organization wants is to come under fire for misusing grant money. There are a few options that might work to build workplace massage therapy into a non-profit work environment.

Related: 3 Major Signs of Employee Burnout (And How to Fix Them)


Funding Chair Massage for Your Non-Profit Employees


1. Make it easy for your donors

Established non-profit orgs will usually have a core group of dedicated regular donors. Some non-profits give donors an option of allocating where they’d like their donation to go. This could mean a specific program, or general administrative costs like printer paper and keeping the lights on. Simply adding another category to this list can be a way to find funding for your chair massage program. 

Give donors the option of giving some of their donation to an “Employee Wellness” fund. Once your coffers are built up in this area, you can give your hard working staff a massage day. More robustly funded organizations will be able to make it a regular occasion.

Related: On-Site Massage: How Often is Often Enough?


2. Ask employees to chip in

The key phrase here is “chip in” not “pay for it completely.” Some massage companies might say the best fix to the question of funding is to make employees pay for it.

That is a bad, bad move.

Not all office massage programs are created equal: employee-funded programs are not only destined to fail, but they actually lower employee morale. (If you’re wondering why an office massage company cares who pays the bill, read this: Office Massage Services: Can Employees Pay?)

That said, asking for $3-$5 from each employee who receives a massage is an easy way to offset the cost without lowering morale. It’s our most successful program option, because it works for everyone.

Related: Can Corporate Massage Lower Healthcare Costs?


3. Include massage in your benefits package

If your non-profit organization has an employee benefits package, try to include an office massage program as part of it. If you can’t find an insurance company who includes massage as part of the deal, consider offering it as an add-on service.

Depending on how your wellness program is structured, you may be able to provide in-house chair massage services and bill it under your health and wellness budget.

Related: Best Employee Perks & Benefits: Your Ultimate Masterlist



Amelia Wilcox

Amelia Wilcox is the Founder and CEO of Nivati, a leader in corporate massage and employee mental health support since 2010. Her high-growth B2B company provides employee stress management tools that arm businesses with actionable data and positive employee experiences to improve wellbeing, boost morale, and increase engagement.

Amelia has exponentially grown her company from a solo living-room service business to an international technology brand.

Recently listed as a Forty Under 40, Fast 50, Inc 5000 Twice awarded National Woman-Owned Small Business of the Year

Licenses, Certifications & Memberships
Licensed Massage Therapist since 2002
Member of American Massage Therapy Association
Served on Utah Worksite Wellness Council from 2012-2015

Attended Utah College of Massage Therapy
Educated in Nutrition and Exercise Physiology at the University of Utah

Massage Magazine (AMTA's publication)