Waipā District Council has won a public relations award for its consultative efforts on the district’s 2021-2031 long-term plan.
The Public Relations Institute of New Zealand (PRINZ) awarded the Council the Supreme Award for its community relations and engagement work ahead of 85 other entries from across the country.
The award recognises projects or programmes that improve or establish mutually beneficial relationships with communities in which the organisation operates. Judges noted Waipa’s “innovative but highly disciplined approach” to getting the community involved in local government planning.
Waipā District Council chief executive, Garry Dyet said the awards showcase a Council commitment to inviting the community to be involved early in complex and long-term discussions.
“We started our long-term plan journey in March 2020 with community BBQs to gather our community’s thoughts on their vision and strategic priorities for the district,” he said.
“Then in 2021, we held lots of community events, including coffee with the mayor, speed dating with the councillors and drop-in sessions to truly connect with our community in ways that really resonated with our residents. It was a lot of effort, involving a lot of people across the organisation.
“Having meaningful engagement with our community shapes the way Waipā moves forward and our communications and engagement team created the opportunities for many of those conversations. I’m very proud of this award, it is well deserved,” he said.