Elena Fowler  

Elena Fowler

For as long as she can remember, Elena has been interested in whakapapa (family history and genealogy). Her mum and some of her cousins were passionate about this too and nurtured her interest. They passed on as much as they could to Elena during their lifetimes. In 2017, during a long period of convalescence and admittedly on a bit of a whim (but also mindful of how problematic DNA testing is for us as indigenous peoples), some family members and Elena purchased DNA test kits from Ancestry.com. They discovered the fascinating and exciting world of DNA testing, including how the test results can be used to connect with both known and previously unknown whanaunga (relatives). They received help from many and learnt so much more than they ever expected. They are still learning as a whānau (family) but have also started paying it forward. The presentations are a koha (offering) from their whānau to yours.