From 27 February 2018 to 2 March 2018, we invite you to come together at Rishikesh, the ‘Yoga Capital of the World’ to share experiences that have thus far shaped you individually, explore the mighty Himalayas and to possibly connect better with your self

Modules on Ashtanga Yoga, Dancing Osho Meditation and South Asian Philosophy are some of the many activities we have planned to further an all-round experience. The event is organised as a mix of interactive sessions with community members, cultural leaders, and workshops centered around personal development and self-awareness.

In the three day fun filled event, we will also examine the avenues of employment generation through traditional creative occupations like art, craft, performance, indigenous knowledge and existing skills to build a self-sufficient, resilient lifestyle for the Himalayan people.

We will explore the diversity of life in the country, and interact through activities, with the delicate dichotomy of India’s past and its present. India has a wealth of intangible heritage and indigenous knowledge systems that has attracted seekers through the ages, as have the Himalayas. Unfortunately, due to the tough topography and lack of income opportunities in the Himalayas, migration is on the rise.

With your vast and varied experience in different geographies of the world, cultures and economies, you can make us see what we may overlook.

We will be housed at a monastic centre and learn about minimalist living even though we may not experience it truly within the short span of the festival. There is no fee to attend the festival; only donations will be received from whosoever wishes to provide support and these will be split evenly between the monastic centre and the social impact projects in the region. Some of the projects will be part of interactive sessions during the festival such as the Dehradun Jail programme, a Slum Project, an Art Residency programme, a Rural Education drive and a Heritage Project.

Great fun. Great food. Great music.

Holi is a time to reach out with the colours of joy. It is the time to love and to forgive and to celebrate life. 

You’ll join change-makers from all over the world, as they paint everything – everything – in organic red, blue and green (and everything in between).

Breathe in the Himalayas

The Himalayas have attracted seekers since time immemorial. In them one can find a wealth of intangible heritage and indigenous knowledge systems: rivers that feed a dozen nations, people that speak a hundred tongues, and dwellings that go back many millennia.

Unfortunately, even these gargantuan mountains face many problems that need your resolve.

Yoga Festival

In addition to the yoga sessions that are included in the programme by prominent yoga gurus such as Yogrishi Vishvketu and Yogi Kamal Singh, you will also have the opportunity to attend the International Yoga Festival in Rishikesh which will take place until the 7th of March, 2018.

What is Shape Yourself 2018?

Shape Yourself 2018 is the debut festival which celebrates the meeting of young, inspired and passionate individuals who wish to familiarize & integrate themselves with The Shape Himalaya Foundation.

Through this event we bring together a vast pool of talent, experienced in various geographies, economies and cultures across the world.

The event will serve as a platform to make associations and networks which open opportunities to serve communities across the Himalayas. 

 

Where will SYF 2018 take place?

The Shape Yourself Festival 2018 will be held in Rishikesh, a town in the northern Indian state of Uttarakhand. Rishikesh is of importance in Indological studies, a holy site on the banks of the river Ganges and is a modern hub for teachings of Yoga, Meditation and Spirituality. It is the gateway to several treks into the Himalayas and to the origins of the Ganges and the Yamuna.

The event will be held between 27th February and 2nd March, 2018.

Where is Rishikesh and how do I reach there?

Rishikesh is approximately 250 kilometers from New Delhi, the capital of India.

To reach Rishikesh there are:

  • 10 daily flights from New Delhi, 2 from Mumbai, and 1 from Bangalore. All three cities have International Airports.
  • 3 daily trains from New Delhi via Dehradun or Haridwar
  • Several buses from Kashmiri Gate Bus Terminal in New Delhi

If you need help in booking your travel to Rishikesh, you may contact [email protected]

Who can attend?

Individuals above 18 years of age, who are passionate about making a difference and wish to serve local communities. Young people looking to work in Himalayan regions of India are especially welcome!

What am I to expect?

Young individuals looking for opportunities to work in Himalayan regions of India will find this event helpful. Participants will get the opportunity to network and connect with like-minded people. Shape Yourself will also host leaders & achievers in various fields: government, non-government, business, and community service. It will offer a platform to make lasting connections & join local networks. Participants will also explore Rishikesh and experience India’s ancient culture — Yoga, meditation, spirituality, local cuisine, religious practices and entertainment.

When is the deadline for registration?

The last date for registration is 5th January 2018, 18:00 hrs Indian Standard Time.

Is there a participation fee?

Participation to the Shape Yourself Festival is at no cost.

However, we are a not-for-profit organisation and would be overjoyed if you could support our ventures and the festival by supporting our crowd-funding campaign: https://www.generosity.com/community-fundraising/shape-yourself-2018

Are scholarships/funding available for the Festival?

Unfortunately, we are not able to provide funding for travel to SYF 2018. Once you get here though, we have taken care of all your basic needs – accommodation, sustenance, and travel between Festival venues. Expenses of a personal nature will have to be borne by delegates themselves.

Where will I be staying?

In Rishikesh, delegates will be residing at the Monastic Centre at Gangadham Ashram. The Ashram is located right by the River Ganges and has access to the river through a private sandbank. There are various gardens spread across the property. As it is a monastic centre, the accommodation is clean and hygienic but quite basic. Some of the rooms have private washrooms, while others have detached facilities. Rooms will be assigned on a first-come first-serve basis.

In Dehradun, delegates will be hosted at home by individual members of Shape Himalaya.

It is not recommended by you may choose to forego the monastic or homestay experiences and book your own accommodation at nearby 3 and 4 star hotels. We will endeavour to arrange local transport for you in this case.

Each location has been selected after a very thorough check on safety, security, the availability of various dietary needs, etc.

How many delegates share a room? How will the rooms be divided?

Stay is arranged on same-gender sharing basis. You will share your room with other participants based on random selection. Rooms will be assigned on a first-come-first-serve basis.

If you have let us know of any accessibility needs in your Confirmation of Attendance form, there may be special arrangements for you.

Can I stay longer/post the event?

It is highly recommended that you stay longer in Rishikesh/India, especially if it is your first time in the country.

Please note that there is the International Yoga Festival in Rishikesh 01-07 March and this will be a busy time in the city with over one thousand visitors.

We will also be sharing with everyone a plan for a post-festival journey by the middle of January. This will be a sojourn into the Himalayas, and to our latest estimate will be upto 5 days long.

Please make prior travel and stay arrangements. For suggestions, please do not hesitate to contact us at [email protected] or approach us during the Festival.

How do I move around Rishikesh?

Even though the tourist area in Rishikesh is walkable, the venue for the conference is only motorable by taxi. There is no Uber/ Ola service available, although you may be able to hire a taxi through the venue office.

Which currency can I use in India?

Please convert your money to Indian Rupees INR. Rupees can be converted near the baggage belts at New Delhi airport arrival hall or else in Rishikesh town.

What clothes do I need to carry with me? Is there a dress code?

Please carry summer clothes along with 2 or 3 warm clothes including bottom wear/track-pants. It is recommended that you carry sneakers or other rugged footwear to fully enjoy the Rishikesh hillscape and partake in all activities. 

The sessions during the festival are going to have a semi-casual feel. Most of the activities take place outdoors. It is too hot during the day to comfortably wear a suit and a crisp chill sets in towards the evenings, so carrying a jacket is recommended.

The closing session, which takes place in Dehradun, could be the one place where you could dress up. You may carry a set of formal clothes if you so wish.

Please carry a spare change of clothes that you do not like for the Holi activity. Holi is celebrated with dry colour, wet colour and water. After playing Holi your clothes may be dyed in colour and you may not be able to wear the same pair again.

Carry loads of spare underwear and socks.

What other essentials do I need to carry with me?
  • Carry items which you do when travelling.
  • Carry mosquito-repellents, like cream or sprays (these can be purchased in India).
  • A sunscreen with UVA and UVB protection is recommended. (SPF30+)
  • Carry extra pairs of socks and under garments.
  • Carry slippers/floaters.
  • Carry your government-approved identity-card with you always. In case you are not a citizen of India, please carry your passport with you at all times.
  • Get a camera or a GoPro if you can! Some of the sights are truly stunning.
Who can I contact in case of emergency? Is there a helpline?

Yes, a helpline is available, and details will be provided to each delegate closer to the dates of the Festival.

Will I be provided help in case of medical emergency etc.?

Yes. The Shape Himalaya Foundation will extend all necessary help to you including medical help. Your safety and well-being is our top concern.

Do I need a local sim-card for my mobile phone in India?

Yes.

It’s recommended to purchase an inexpensive sim card at the New Delhi Airport Arrivals Terminal or in Rishikesh for about $5 USD to use data and calling for co-ordination and emergency purposes.

If enough people show interest, we may make arrangements for sim cards for all delegates.

Please note that only the Jio telecom operator has good network at the Conference venue.

Can I choose my own hotel/accommodation?

You are free to choose from hotels in the vicinity. 3-star and 4-star hotels are readily available.

For support please contact [email protected]

What will the weather be like?

The end of February and early March are generally very pleasant in both Rishikesh and Dehradun. The festival of Holi marks the onset of spring in the region. Temperatures will range between a high of 28° C/80° F and a crisp low of 13° C/ 55° F. The Ganges river will have a good flow and this is peak rafting season. No rainfall is expected.

It will be warm (not hot) during the day; the evenings can get cooler, at times cold, and it is advisable to carry a light jacket.

Will there be WiFi internet at the Conference Venue?

Yes, common areas at the Conference venue have WiFi. It’s fairly quick. However, certain areas may not have access to WiFi. We believe in sharing, so some of us will carry portable WiFi hot spots that delegates can freely use.

What mobile networks are available at the Conference Venue?

Only Reliance Jio 4G is readily available at the Conference Venue in Rishikesh, but you may see sporadic spikes of the other networks. All networks are available in Dehradun. We will inform you in case any of this changes.