Introducing the Toru Trail in Aotearoa

Introducing the Toru Trail in Aotearoa

Join a learning community of practice!

The Toru Trail is about hands-on teaching and learning from each other; involving willing hosts and eager interns; resulting in self-responsible and self-designed practical learning journeys throughout Aotearoa - New Zealand.

It is hosted by Toru Educationwhich stands for:

providing experiential learning opportunities which nurture people, planet and spirit”, and

supporting and witnessing the authentic unfolding of each other’s unique life stories and the value of practical learning when pondering one’s next steps at a “What’s next?” moment.


Update about the Toru Trail Aotearoa

We first raised the concept of an internship trail in the Equinox PiNZ newsletter (then called 'Practical Learning Aotearoa Internship trail (PLAIT). We have been refining the concept and now have the tech platform ready. We also simplified the name to Toru Trail. Friends and colleagues have helped to compile a first DRAFT list of 35 potential hosts. By the end of this week, we are contacting all these good folks. We feel we need a commitment of 20 hosts to make it public and hope to achieve this as soon as possible, eg. beginning of the year.


The key points of the Toru Trail are:

1. Focus on self-responsibility, intention, and consciousness: The intern creates a self-designed practical learning journey, based on intentional questions (mini research projects). This is learning seen in its widest sense of meaning. We encourage journaling, creating portfolios or finding another fitting way to track the journey.

2. A longer mutual time commitment to allow for an enriching deepening of the experience (suggested minimum of one month).

3. The Internship Agreement describing mutual expectations of the host and intern, including agreed accountability for each other’s responsibilities and commitments. We hope this will promote clarity and a fair exchange of give and take.

Internship Agreement principles:

The Platform will provide a template for Internship Agreements. In reality, the Agreements will vary greatly. The following applies to all:

Internship Agreement

·     Is drawn up as a draft by host and intern together, based on initial email conversations,

·   Includes a description of each other’s expectations and wishes and each other’s response to such expectations and wishes (includes financial expectations);


Includes a trial period of five days, followed by a check-in conversation, to confirm/adjust the expectations described in the draft Agreement;


Includes a description of the measurable exchange such as hours of work, food, and sleeping arrangements;

·    Includes a number of statements (practices relating to health and safety, self-responsibility, liability, healthy communication, honesty etc.). 

Self-responsibility is a cornerstone value held by Toru Education.



To see the full description click HERE

Doris Zuur and Emma Matthews from the Toru Education Trust., 027–2811570, 027–6372015