TOAF Adventure Specialties Trust
Learnings Shared from a successful applicant of the Targeted Outdoor Activity Fund
Next month we will be announcing the opening of round 3 of the TOAF. This will also include an introduction of the criteria for applicants. The TOAF is a financial fund available to operators who engage with underrepresented communities in the outdoors.
Adventure Specialties Trust were worthy recipients of round 1 funding. Here is what they have to share:
Over the past 6 months Adventure Specialties Trust has partnered with Purapura Whetu to deliver a outdoor adventure programme for Maori. The programme was delivered one day a week over a period of 8 weeks and we did a different local adventure each week. The programme was for any client of Purapura Whetu and connected whanau.
There were many lessons learnt throughout this partnership that has provided valuable learning for us here at Adventure Specialties Trust and we believe will benefit the wider industry. One of the key developments has been understanding a Maori worldview for programme design and delivery.
Recreating in the outdoors is quite a modern, western, affluent thing to do. Maori wouldn't traditionally go for a paddle for the sake of it, there was always a purpose. They would go in the waka to collect kai moana (sea food); to the bush to collect edible plants, or medicinal plants, or harakeke to weave clothing or kete; or to learn the history of a place; or to pay respect to ancestors. The very concept of going for a fun time is not within the traditional worldview of Maori. This has challenged us to change how we introduce these activities. To include more of a holistic approach to an activity rather than doing it for the activity's sake. This has challenged our facilitators to learn more of the history, create space in the programme for engaging with activities like weaving or collecting things, and to focus on the practical takeaways of the programme. The more we have included these aspects of kaupapa Maori, the more engaged the clients have been.
There have been other things we have learnt along the way such as:
• Making the programme Whanau Ora.
• Reducing the commitment of the programme.
• Understanding tikanga Maori when working together.
• The importance of knowing partnership organization policies.
and we look forward to sharing these at the next opportunity.
Adventure Therapy Manager, Adventure Specialties Trust