Rishikesh is a holy city for Hindus located in the foothills of the Himalaya in northern India, located 200kms North of the National capital New Delhi. It is also known as the gateway to the Himalayas and is located around 25 kilometers north of another holy city, Haridwar. Rishikesh also marks the end of the journey of the Holy River Ganges in the Himalayas and the start of its journey into the plains. As a summer volunteer abroad, you will find Rishikesh perfectly fit.
It is traditionally known as the spiritual capital of the globe. From the music legends like “The Beatles” and “ John Lennon” to new age celebrities like actor Kate Winslet – everyone wants to come down to this city of Yogi’s and Temples. Rishikesh stylizes itself as the “the world capital of Yoga”, owing to its numerous yoga and meditation centers that also attract tourists from all over India. Rishikesh is surrounded by lush green forests in the Foothills of the Himalayas, which make a perfect setting for meditation and spiritual quests. It is a famous belief that meditation in Rishikesh brings one closer to attainment of moksha, as does a dip in the holy river, the Ganges that flows through it.
It is also becoming a popular spot for white water rafting enthusiasts, both from India and abroad, as it offers medium to rough rapids in the course of river Ganges.
India, a major economic superpower continues to face stern challenges in the public education sector. It is still ranked 161 on the World Education index with a literacy rate of only 54.27 %. The major reasons for the low literally rate are the very high drop out rate of students, shortage of infrastructure and poor level of teacher training. Only 15% of Indian students reach high school and just 7%, graduate. Our volunteers work with the schools, which have very limited resources. Volunteers bring in their experiences, new ideas, and energy to help the children understand the importance of education. They act as a role model to encourage students to choose school and education over dropping out and work. Volunteers assist the local teachers with an aim to spread the awareness towards the importance of education, regular schooling, and its benefits.N
Our Teaching program in India with associated with local Government and Charitable schools. 80% of all recognized schools at the Elementary Stage are government run or supported. Volunteers are placed with Primary and Pre-primary: Nursery, LKG and UKG ( Lower and Upper Kindergarten) classes as that would help to build a solid foundation for the children. Volunteers have the opportunity to teach whatever they like. Generally, English is highly valued, but feel free to teach Math, science, music, dance, geography or any other subject that suits you. Just remember, the children’s English skills are minimal so other subjects might be hard to understand.
Accommodation in Rishikesh is serviced rooms/apartments or Hotels with all basic modern amenities. Accommodation is very basic and volunteers generally share room/bathroom with fellow volunteers. Meals are basic Indian, vegetarian. There is an option of staying at an Yoga ashram but please be advised that All Yoga ashrams have a strict daily routine and time table which all guests are require to follow. If you would like to stay in an Ashram please get in touch with us at the earliest and confirm availability before booking as some ashrams are booked out and some are very selective in terms of the volunteers they accept.
Cultural Activities :
Our Group Volunteering Program in Rishikesh includes Yoga four times a week along with Language and Classical dance classes. These are specially included to give our volunteers a chance to learn the rich colorful culture of India. Yoga classes are at a beginners level and language taught is Hindi and Dance is Traditional Indian Dance. Rishikesh is a Haven for anyone who wants to learn more about the Spiritual and Cultural traditions of India. There is so much to choose from, apart from our Program inclusive activities some other activities that volunteers can undertake are Ayurvedic Cooking, Ayurvedic Massage, Astrology, Crystal healing, Indian Music, etc.
Volunteers generally spend the weekends relaxing, shopping and exploring the city of Rishikesh and surroundings. Visiting the various ashrams or just relaxing on the banks of river Ganges. Some of the other famous tourist spots/ Activities nearby Rishikesh are White water Rafting, Bungee Jumping, Haridwar, Rajaji National park Neelkanth trek, etc. Volunteers are also encouraged to take overnight weekend trips to Nearby cities which are tourist Hot Spots in India: Amritsar, Agra, Dharamsala, Jaipur, Chandigarh, etc. Our program coordinators are always willing to help design, plan and organize your weekend trips.
Local Coordinator :
Vivek B: Has a Masters degree in Yoga and Meditation from Rajasthan University. He has been actively teaching Yoga, Meditation, Ayurveda and other Vedic spiritual practices for the last 10 years. He holds a Master degree in Economics and Yoga, Preksha Meditation and Life science. He is one of the best people to be with to understand and learn about Hindu religion, Yoga, Mediation and other spiritual traditions. He has been managing our volunteers since 2009. He lives in Rishikesh with his wife Sangeeta and daughter. Sangeeta is very fond of shopping and loves to take our volunteers shopping in Rishikesh and Haridwar.
Program Fee and Start Dates :
Our projects in Dharamsala are available from March – Mid December, with no, have fixed start dates. Volunteers can start on any date of their preference. Though we do not have fixed start dates we prefer volunteers to arrive in India on Thursday or Friday, this provides the volunteers with an opportunity to relax, acclimatize and adjust to the new environment, weather, time zone, etc before starting work on Monday.
|Volunteering Period||Program Fee (USD)|
- Note : Apart from the above Program fee, a registration fee of $250 is required at the time of application to book your placement.
What does this program fee include?
Our programs are all inclusive they include everything from arrival till departure.
- Pre Departure information and support
- Airport pick upon arrival
- Overnight stay in Delhi (If required, depending upon arrival times)
- Transfer to Dharamsala via overnight Bus
- Home stay / Guest house Accommodation
- 2 or 3 meals per day while volunteering
- Orientation about Local life, customs, greetings etc.
- Yoga lessons 4-5 times per week
- Weekend trek to Triund
- Local Sightseeing
- Tibetan/India cooking lessons (once a week)
- In country support 24-7, emergency contact
- Return transfer to New Delhi via overnight Bus
What is NOT included?
- International Airfares
- Travel Insurance
- Visa and Visa extension fee
- Local transportation
- Airport Drop
- Personal expenses : Bottled water, Toiletries etc
- Weekend Trips