Shilpa Kamat is a poet, writer, educator, visual artist, and wellness coach based in the San Francisco Bay Area.
::artist:: Creative expression has always been central to my being, whether I am writing, drawing, painting, or dancing. I have an MFA in Creative Writing, and these days, my primary focus is on poetics and fiction (both YA and speculative). I create visual art as well. My creativity also finds expression in cooking, parenting, and connecting with the natural world, especially forests.
::educator:: I am passionate about learning and teaching, from delving into subject matter to supporting emotional, mental, and physical health. I’ve been a yoga teacher since the early 2000s and a Multiple Subjects teacher for over a decade (I have a clear California credential). I teach both young people and adults in classroom environments, outdoors, and (especially in these times) online.
::wellness coach:: In addition to teaching yoga in a variety of settings, I have spent many years facilitating groups for youth and families in crisis. I have lived in a land-based community and served on the Health and Spiritual Wellbeing committee. Having experienced the healing and vitality that comes with connecting to wild spaces, I have organized many excursions into nature for diverse youth, and I have incorporated artistic practices, especially creative writing, as tools for healing. I am a Reiki master and have witnessed amazing impacts of energy healing as well as healing through interactive visualizations.
::advocate:: On a large scale, our planet is in desperate need of healing and restoration; ecological and human sustainability needs to be central to our policies and practices to ensure that our communities and ecosystems are healthy. I feel called to do my part to help. I have joined with others to advocate for peace and justice, especially for immigrants, indigenous communities, threatened ecosystems, the LGBT community, those who face an opportunity and resource gap, and other vulnerable populations. I currently feel that my writing is my best path towards advocacy, whether I am collaborating with other writers to raise awareness of struggles or representing diverse communities and positive visions in my work.