6th - 10th December' 2023
A journey through the deserts of Rajasthan, where life seems like a poetry and what lies within are nomadic folktales, a royal history and an enriching cultural legacy.
Storytellers Residency is India's first impact storytelling program designed to discover and document untold stories and perspectives, guided by mentorship and culture exchange, with a collective of change-makers.
by The Impact Society
Explorers x Photographers x Filmmakers x Writers
Artists x Change-makers >> This is for you
If storytelling is your thing, join this confluence of explorers, photographers, filmmakers, writers and creators, discover unseen & untold stories, gain insights by renowned professionals, exchange traditional knowledge, indulge in authentic explorations, meet inspiring local leaders and share perspectives with a collective seeking impact.
Through workshops, activities, guided sessions and discussions, the residency offers a group of diverse storytellers the opportunity to explore their craft, share perspectives, build narratives and take positive actions.
Experience a program designed for creative explorations, storytelling mentorship and perspective sharing with a collective of change-makers, artists and leaders.
At the residency, we discover untold stories, unlearn the art of impact storytelling through narrative building & perspective sharing, gain insights from professionals and travel to meet a collective of inspiring storytellers.
A storytelling experiment, where we examine ideas and narratives through nature explorations, field visits, community exchange, creative break-throughs, photography/film showcases, and discussions with fellow storytellers.
Meet change-makers on this unique journey
Johann Binny Kuruvilla
Storyteller - Kochi Heritage Project
Author & Travel Photographer
Lead Advisor Aadyam Handwoven and Retail Consultant (TH/CK/Arrow)
Biologist & Science Journalist
Residency | Rajasthan
Location: Kaner Retreat - India's first desert botany garden
A seven-acre desert botanical garden near Jodhpur, Kaner is based near a sacred grove that is full of wild desert plants.
At Kaner, you can explore life in the desert through plant based cuisine and unique experiences. The radiance of the sun and the stars are complimentary.
Here as the sun rays fall on the yellow sand you become part of a golden landscape where everything glistens. At night, the stars come out, so close that you feel you can touch them with your hands.
A one-of-a-kind storytelling experience with exposure to the leading minds in the field, our trail is heroed by inspiring storytellers who will guide you to open your minds to diverse forms of storytelling & leadership.
A day to engage in meaningful dialogue, introductions
and sharing a circle of stories with the collective.
Photographer / Experience Curator
A photographer and travel experience creator, Vishal has an eye for expressing history and portraying surreal stories of nomadic tribes and lasting cultures.
His travel has taken him to the north and south of India in the quest of documenting local cultures and tribes, with his photos being published across various networks, books and media.
Broadcast Journalist and Filmmaker
Sapna Bhatia is an International journalist and filmmaker. She has worked in India as an Anchor/Correspondent for Zee News and in England with CNBC Europe, APTN and Al Jazeera English.
Her company TV News International provides video content to International Broadcasters. Some of the documentaries made by her company have received critical acclaim including an Emmy nomination. Sapna is a member of the foreign correspondents club of South Asia. She is an MBA and has a Masters in International Journalism from City University in London.
Day 1: Arrivals & IntroductionsArrive in the blue city of Jodhpur and head to Kaner Retreat - India's first desert botanical resort. Refresh and meet your fellow storytellers for a quick round of introductions. Settle-in for the night and exchange stories of explorations and discoveries with our Fellow Storytellers.
Day 2: Landscapes & EnvironmentKickstart the day with a short stroll to the sacred grove, locally known as Oran, opening the doors to the world of desert plants. Experience miles of untouched desert wilderness and a walk through hundreds of indigenous as well as cultivated plant species. Session Perspectives: Through stories and anecdotes from local culture, we explore desert botany and its role in the culture of the Thar Desert. Come back for a traditional lunch and reconvene for the evening session and presentation, over tea and coffee, with our fellow storytellers. The presentation will give you insights over diversified forms of art and storytelling, using photography and films. Session Perspectives: Diversify your learnings and knowledge on 'Broadcast and Film Journalism' and 'Environmental Portraits' as means to create impact storytelling. End the evening with a showcase musical performance by the Bhil tribe, and post the performance a short Q+A with artists.
Day 3: Culture & Co-existenceExplore the dunes of Thar and discover the life of nomads, their culture, and untold stories of co-existence with nature. Spend the day at Kheechan, a village cluster in Jaisalmer, known for the resting grounds of Demoiselle cranes. Every September, these cranes take flight above 16,000 feet from Mongolia, crossing the mighty Himalayas and landing in a small village in Rajasthan – Kheechan. Locally known as ‘Kurja’ these birds are fed and looked after by the villagers who collect money to feed them tons of grains in the ‘Chuga Ghar’ or feeding point. Kheechan is also home to beautifully carved havelis, telling tales of merchants who were once part of the silk route. Session Perspectives: Through storytelling and field-documentation, we will shape narratives of conservation & communities, that can tell a tale of preserving our lasting habitats. Come back to experience a starry night in the dunes and explore some night photography.
Day 4: Reviving Arts and Artisan CommunitiesCommunities play an important role in shaping society and drive social change. A day we spend on understanding Rajasthani craftsmanship and skill at Pokhran. Pokhran is home to exquisite handicraft work, a dying skill that needs to be revived to preserve the heritage of this place. Gomat a tiny village in Pokhran is home to these exceptionally talented weavers who produce the “Pattu work “on variety of shawls, bedsheets, Kurtis, cushion covers etc. Weaving has instilled courage in the women living in the veil to be financially independent and earn a respectable place in the society. It has not only generated employment for the village, but also empowered women to take part in decision making. Session Perspectives: Document the intricate challenges and underlying narratives in traditional arts and artisan skills. Come back to exchange perspectives, reflect on narratives, build and shape stories and exchange our collective experiences. The night ends with a celebratory dinner on the dunes.
Day 5: Closing & DeparturesCheck-outs are at 12pm. We close the program with a pledge to continue the trail of stories through our art. Spend the day at Jodhpur city and take the evening flights, while keen adventurers can stay back to explore the blue city.
Group transfers from Jodhpur airport (To & Fro)
4 Nights stay with (breakfast, lunch & dinner) at Kaner Retreat
All meal plan (12 meals) over 5 days
All workshops, experiences, photo-walks and story-trails
All internal transfers and in-city visits
Mentorship and guidance + Experiential Sessions on 'The Art of Impact Storytelling'
Stationery for your hacks & mentor notes
Expertise by The Impact Society + Mentors on board
Give-aways & gifts
Air/Train fare (To&Fro) from destination to Rajasthan
Meals consumed during transit
Any personal food/drinks purchased (During walks/explorations/trails), which is not a part of the inclusions.
Medical/Personal Expenditures done during the tour
Any personal expenses that are not within the itinerary
Any project/material cost for any personal showcase that's not a part of the group or collaborative plan.
- INR 65,000/person (Double Occupancy)
- INR 85,000/person (Single Occupancy)
Handpicked & Curated Explorations
Discover nomadic folktales, heritage art, environmental co-existence and culture through our thoughtfully picked authentic trails.
Local Exchange & Tales
Immerse in local experiences, document the nomadic life, discover traditional co-existing knowledge systems & thriving communities.
Travel with a Collective
Travel with a resonating & conscious tribe who yearns to unlearn and explore just like you.
Learn from our Fellow Storyteller and meet inspiring change-makers, to unlearn the art of storytelling and narrative building.
Heritage & Boutique Stays
Discover the flavour of the island with handpicked stays at resorts and hotels.
While you are on this explorative journey, exchange thoughts, ideas and collaborate with a like-minded community to co-create Impact.