Helen is responsible for Project Janszoon’s plantings in the Abel Tasman—she makes sure we’re planting the right natives, in the right places, and then keeps an eye on how they are doing.
A native of Dublin, Helen has spent nearly 30 years working in the non profit conservation sector. She began her career in administration and started her first job in New Zealand working for Greenpeace, the year after the Rainbow Warrior was bombed.
Deciding she was better at practical work than lobbying she re-trained in sustainable land management, specialising in ecological restoration.
Helen has worked on all the DOC administered islands in the Hauraki Gulf and also spent time working on Lord Howe Island in Australia. She has been in charge of restoration planting and weed control on Motuora Island in the Hauraki Gulf since 1998 with the Motuora Restoration Society.
Wanting to get out of the city she moved to Motueka in 2009 and has since been involved in restoration work for DOC and Project Janszoon. Helen is also a trustee of the Native Forest Restoration Trust, a national organisation which purchases and manages land for conservation purposes, and the Otuwhero Trust, a community group carrying out restoration work in the Otuwhero wetland near Marahau.
Helen says she loves working in the outdoors and thinks she is privileged to be working in the Abel Tasman National Park and contributing to conservation.