Helena Rattray-Te Mana

Helena Rattray-Te Mana is a Kaiputaiao Social Scientist in the social sciences team.

Helen earned her master’s thesis and upcoming PhD through Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiārangi.





  • Research

    Helena joined the social systems team in early 2021, following nine years as a community facing kaupapa Māori researcher, working alongside key Māori and Native American academics and passionate advocates, contributing to the emerging field of Māori historical and intergenerational trauma and healing, as well as anti-racism advocacy. Helena also has a special interest in de-incarceration and wellbeing of Māori and associated (in)equities, which are reflected in her master’s thesis and upcoming PhD through Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiārangi. 

    Helena has a varied background, with an early career in people transport and information technology. She finds research through social systems brings two of her favourite worlds together - people and systems. Helena is solution driven and believes “Māori health excellence should be our default”. 

    Helena has a strong desire to transform her world. She coordinates whānau flourishing aspirations in a practical sense, such as whānau in warm homes and aspires to follow tūpuna guidelines of harnessing the sun like Māui, by implementing alternative home energy for whānau homes located in her home region of Ngaa Rauru Kiitahi. 

    Current projects include: 

    • Te hā o ngā tūpuna me ngā mokopuna: Understanding Māori wellbeing through a tūpuna whenua analysis 
    • Understanding the role of community voice within environmental health practice 
    • Systemic innovation in sexual assault response 
    • He Wai Māpuna: Iwi led water programme 
  • Publications