A researcher at Te Whānau o Waipareira has been honoured with a community research and service award.
Dr Sneha Lakhotia won the Ethnic and Migrant Community Researcher Award at Te Auaha Pitomata New and Emerging Community Researcher Awards, held in Wellington on 31st October.
“I am very grateful and humbled by this recognition,” Dr Lakhotia said. “It encourages me to do better and drive my passion for change and community research and policy with more momentum and steam. It has also provided a platform to learn and share with fellow researchers in the same space and build connections and collaboration for the more meaningful and impactful research.”
Dr Lakhotia won the award for a groundbreaking report on the effectiveness of a parenting intervention programme for Māori. The social impact report on Ngā Tau Mīharo o Aotearoa – The Incredible Years Parenting Programme, demonstrated that for every dollar invested in the programme by the Government, a social value of nearly four dollars is created.
The programme is run by Waipareira out of its West Auckland base and has reached out to more than 300 whānau and families over its seven years of it delivery. It takes a whānau ora approach, meaning it is driven by Māori cultural values and aims to support whānau within a holistic, family and community context.
“Working in the Whānau Ora space gives more opportunity to take this work further because I believe research is of real value when it translates to action. This would have not been possible without the support of a great research team like Wai Research and Waipareira,” Dr Lakhotia said.
Dr Lakhotia was one of several researchers honoured. All award recipients had to demonstrate a positive influence on a specific community or community research, as well as community engagement, initiative and/or leadership in conducting research.
Their research also had to be collaborative and inclusive and demonstrate high standards of research and evaluation.