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Human Rights Internships

A. Objectives

McGill University’s Faculty of Law enjoys a rich tradition of human rights education and involvement. In 1992, the Faculty established a number of partnerships with non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in Canada and abroad. Administered by the Centre for Human Rights and Legal Pluralism, the International Human Rights Internships Program is a fully credited course that allows students to earn six (6) credits toward the completion of the BCL/LLB degree.

We are currently inviting applications for the 2015 summer placements:

Legal interns and Deputy Secretary Emilia Segares in front of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights in San José, Costa Rica

The Internship Program carefully selects law students for placements as interns with NGOs and courts for a period of 12 weeks over the summer. Partner organizations provide students with practical work experience in human rights investigation, monitoring, and reporting. The internships also provide exposure to the operation and implementation of international legal human rights instruments and norms. The Internship Program is directed by the Faculty’s Human Rights Committee under the direction of Professor Nandini Ramanujam.

The Internship Program provides students with an opportunity to apply their legal education in a concrete setting and further develop a demonstrated interest and commitment to the defence of human rights. Students participate in the Program as volunteers, with partial funding from the Faculty of Law. Following their summer placements, interns return to the Faculty with practical legal training and personal experience that enrich the intellectual and social life of the law school community.

Read the McGill Human Rights Interns blog at blogs.mcgill.ca/humanrightsinterns/

Download: 2015-human_rights_internships_application.docx (Updated October 7, 2014 with two more internships!)

Internships will likely be offered in partnership with the following organizations (links jump down to each entry) for the summer of 2015:

  1. Cambodian League for the Promotion & Defence of Human Rights (LICADHO) – Phnom Penh, Cambodia
  2. The Canadian Human Rights Foundation (Equitas) – Montreal, Canada
  3. The Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network – Toronto, Canada
  4. The Inter-American Court of Human Rights – San José, Costa Rica
  5. Human Rights Watch – New York City, USA
  6. Ateneo Centre for Human Rights – Manila, the Philippines
  7. Maliiganik Tukisiiniakvik Legal Services – Iqaluit, Nunavut
  8. The Equality Effect – Malawi
  9. Disability Rights International – Mexico City, Mexico
  10. Legal Action for Persons with Disabilities – Center for Health, Human Rights and Development – Uganda (joint placement)
  11. Institute for Human Rights and Development in Africa (IHRDA)– The Gambia
  12. Oceans Beyond Piracy - One Earth Future Foundation – Colorado, USA
  13. Responsibility to Protect Program – One Earth Future Foundation, Colorado, USA
  14. Shuraako Project – One Earth Future Foundation, Colorado, USA
  15. Mahanirban Calcutta Research Group (CRG) – Calcutta, India
  16. Avocats sans frontières Canada – Quebec City
  17. Justice Department at the Mohawk Council of Akwesasne – Ontario/Quebec/NY border (New in 2014)
  18. First Nations Child & Family Caring Society of Canada – Ottawa (New in 2014)
  19. L’organisation Aswat Nissa (Voix de femmes) – Tunis, Tunisia (NEW for 2015)
  20. National Human Rights Council of Morocco – Rabat, Morocco (NEW for 2015)
  21. Mental Disability Advocacy Centre - Budapest, Hungary (NEW for 2015)
  22. Women For A Change - Yaoundé, Cameroon (NEW for 2015)

B. Course Requirements

The International Human Rights Internship Program is a six-credit course offered by the Faculty of Law of McGill University.

I. Credit Allocation

Interns must apportion the internship’s three (3) credits during the summer semester and three (3) credits in the fall semester. The three (3) summer credits are for the 12-week field placement and a short Internship report. The three (3) fall credits are for the seminar course leading to a research paper.

N.B. The total number of non-course credits taken throughout the BCL/LLB program may not exceed 15. Human Rights Internships only counts for three non-course credits.

II. Course Requirements

The course requirements consist of three components, defined below. The 12-week placement and the internship report are pass/fail and count for three credits. The Seminar Course with Research Paper is a 3-credit graded course with 75% of the evaluation based on your research paper and 25% on participation.

a. 12-Week Placement

Interns are expected to complete a minimum of 12 weeks with their partner organization over the course of a summer. The Faculty of Law and the partner organizations have agreed that interns will be expected to work at least four days a week on NGO- and tribunal- related activities. Depending on the tasks the intern is assigned, partner organizations may give the intern one day a week to carry out her or his own research for the purposes of completing the third course requirement, the supervised research paper.

b. Internship Report

Upon completion of the 12-week placement, the intern is expected to submit a report (10-15 pages) on the internship experience. In general, the report should provide the Director of the Program as well as future interns with a snapshot of the partner organization’s work, a description of the nature of the work undertaken by the intern, and the intern’s views regarding how the placement could be improved or refined. The Report will not be sent to the host organisation.

The report is due on the last working day of September at the SAO. Taking into consideration the comments of the Supervisor, the Director of the Program will submit a pass-fail grade.

c. Three-credit Seminar Course with Research Paper (75% research paper, 25% participation)

Interns are also required to take a seminar course, which leads to a final research paper. The course will focus on taking the interns through the process of writing this paper, and grades will be broken down over the various components of this process. The paper is written throughout the course of the seminar.

The goal of this seminar is to create a space for students, returning from human rights internship field placement, to critically reflect on their work and connect it to the broad concepts and critical theories related to human rights. The seminar will be built upon the brief pre-departure session that briefly explored challenges of connecting critical approaches to human rights with the practical work on the ground. The seminar, which will heavily draw upon the student experiences, and case studies presented by them, will explore theoretical, ethical, and strategic issues related to human rights work. The first half of the course will consist of a review of carefully selected literature on discourses in human rights advocacy and activism, and on research methodology specific to human rights work such as fact finding, monitoring and reporting, grass roots mobilization, and media engagement. The second half of the course is envisaged as a writing workshop that will be structured on a peer review model and will ultimately lead up to the writing of the term paper.

Method of Evaluation: The final grade will be based upon a final paper on a theme linked to the Internship (75%), and class participation (25%).

C. Application Process

I. Application calendar for summer 2015

  1. Wednesday, 1 October 2014, 13:00-14:30 in NCDH 202 – Internship Information Session (during universal break)
  2. Friday, 31 October 2014 – Applications due - email them to hrinternships [dot] law [at] mcgill [dot] ca (by 3PM)
  3. Monday, 17 November 2014 – Interviews start. Short-listed candidates are invited to a 10-15 minutes interview with a three-member panel.

Please submit all required documents together as a single PDF document, if possible. Applications should be addressed to Professor Nandini Ramanujam, Executive and Program Director.

Questions about the application process? Write to hrinternships [dot] law [at] mcgill [dot] ca.

For complete details, download the 2015 Human Rights Internship call for candidates:  2015-human_rights_internships_application.doc

D. Funding

Students participate in the Program as volunteers, and receive no salary for their work. Students should keep in mind that they will have to pay the registration fees for a 6-credit course (approximately $4665 for international students, $1171 for out-of-province students, $433 for Quebec residents). Students from the US should note that summer Stafford loans are not available to US students completing a second undergraduate degree.

Students are encouraged to raise funds to support their internships.

I. Expenses for North American and International Placements

In addition to the course registration fees, all interns should budget for expenses such as living expenses for the 12-week internship (housing, food, local transportation, communications, internet access, etc.)

In addition, overseas interns should factor in the costs of:

  • Vaccinations
  • Visas
  • Airport taxes
  • Travel insurance

The host organization is expected to assist interns in the identification of suitable and affordable housing for the duration of the placement. Students should be prepared, however, to handle this independently (and with the assistance of former interns).

II. Student Contribution

Students who are selected for the international placements are expected to raise additional funds to cover the extra costs involved in their stay abroad. In previous years, this has translated into the need to raise roughly $2,000-$2,500. However, financial needs may vary by placement.

III. Faculty Contribution

The Faculty will reimburse the cost of a return flight between Montreal and the site of a student's internship. To minimize costs, all travel arrangements are made through a McGill-affiliated travel associate.

Students will receive a modest stipend from the Faculty of Law. The stipend awards will be determined to reflect the costs of living in each of the destination locations.

IV. Student Fundraising

Students who undertake to raise additional funds for their internships may obtain a letter from the Director of the Program confirming the student’s participation in the Internship Program, and encouraging support for the student’s non-remunerated work.

Tax receipts are issued for contributions that are made payable to McGill University Faculty of Law. However, these donations may not be earmarked for any particular intern; they are placed in the general fund for stipends for interns.

Contributions may be mailed to: Ms Debbie Carlone, Faculty of Law, McGill University, 3644 Peel Street, Montreal (Quebec) H3A 1W9 .

E. Partner Organizations

  • Listed below are the various partner organizations around the world where interns can be placed.

1. The Cambodian League for the Promotion and Defence of Human Rights (LICADHO), Phnom Penh, Cambodia


LICADHO is a non-political, non-governmental human rights organization with its head office in Phnom Penh, and sixteen additional offices in fourteen provinces. LICADHO is comprised six advocacy departments: Children’s Rights, Women’s Rights, Monitoring, Medical, Human Rights Education, and the Project Against Torture. The intern may choose to work in any or several of the departments throughout the summer.

Type of work done by previous interns includes:

  • Research and analysis of legal documents;
  • Elections monitoring work;
  • Drafting agreements for LICADHO and other organizations;
  • Drafting reports and correspondence;
  • Drafting and editing material for the LICADHO website;
  • Conducting press reviews;
  • Designing educational material.


  • Abigail Dubiniecki  (2003)
  • Sidney Thompson  (2004)
  • Andrea Hwang  (2005)
  • Jacob Wilson  (2006)
  • Malcolm Dort  (2007)
  • Sophie Tremblay   (2008)
  • Kezia Speirs  (2009)
  • Patrick Reynaud  (2010)
  • Siena Anstis (2011)
  • Éloïse Ouellet-Décoste (2012)
  • Léa Pelletier-Marcotte (2013)
  • Jonathan Coulombe (2014)

2. Equitas – The Canadian Human Rights Foundation, Montreal


Equitas is dedicated to the defence and promotion of human rights through education. Its education programs support the development of pluralistic and democratic civil societies. The main activities include the annual three-week International Human Rights Training Program (IHRTP), bringing together over 100 participants from about 50 countries. The IHRTP strengthens the capacity of human rights organizations to undertake human rights education efforts through training, awareness campaigns, information dissemination, and advocacy. The intern will prepare human rights materials for and participate in the annual Program.

Type of work done by previous interns includes:

  • Managing and updating the Documentation Centre of the International Human Rights Training Program (IHRTP);
  • Logistics and set-up for the training;
  • Assisting the participant of the IHRTP in their documentation research;
  • Data entry;
  • Some legal research for the education specialist;
  • Transcripts of the plenary sessions;
  • French to English translation;
  • Helping to organize the education and training programs;
  • Working with the education team to prepare daily plans for the program.


  • Kerri Joffee (2004)
  • Amina Chaoui (2005)
  • Frédéric Wilson (2006)
  • Gaël Pétillon (2007)
  • Max Reed (2008)
  • Rachel Gotthilf (2009)
  • Alexandra Pace  (2010)
  • Karine Azoulay (2011)
  • Jeanne Mageau-Taylor (2012)
  • Linda El Halabi (2013)
  • Diana Arghiscu and Arielle Corobow (2014)

3. Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network, Toronto, Canada


The Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network is engaged in education, legal and ethical analysis, and policy development. The Legal Network promote responses to HIV/AIDS that: implement the International Guidelines on HIV/AIDS and Human Rights; respect the rights of people with HIV/AIDS and of those affected by the disease; facilitate HIV prevention efforts; facilitate care, treatment, and support of people with HIV/AIDS; minimize the adverse impact of HIV/AIDS on individuals and communities; and, address the social and economic factors that increase vulnerability to HIV/AIDS and to human rights abuses.

Type of work done by previous interns includes:

  • Extensive project-based legal research;
  • Drafting and editing;
  • Several administrative tasks.


  • Eva Gazurek (2003)
  • Debbie Mankovitz (2004)
  • Katie Gibson (2005)
  • Sarah Kushner (2006)
  • Anne Merminod (2007)
  • Eric Boschetti (2008)
  • Katrina Peddle (2009)
  • Leila Beheshti (2010)
  • Rémi Weiss (2011)
  • Jihyun Rosel Kim (2012)
  • Alyssa C. Clutterbuck (2013)
  • Isabelle Rémillard (2014)

4. The Inter-American Court for Human Rights (IACHR), San José, Costa Rica


Interns work directly with the Legal Department of the Court, in preparing case files or research memoranda. While the Court works in Spanish and English, Spanish is used most frequently, both in the briefs and documents submitted to the Tribunal and the internal work of the Court. Successful candidates for the IACHR placement must therefore have a very strong ability to read, write, and converse in Spanish. A McGill partnership with the Court was established in 2002.

Type of work done by previous interns includes:

  • Researching human rights issues;
  • Writing reports;
  • Analyzing international human rights jurisprudence;
  • Assisting with the process of contentious cases, advisory opinions, provisional measures and supervision of the compliance of the Court’s judgments;
  • Providing logistical assistance during public hearings;
  • Developing legal arguments for specific cases.

Interns may also be required to conduct more intensive research about specific issues of law and participate in the daily activities of the Court, such as the review and translation of documents, and other administrative tasks.


  • Jonas-Sébastien Beaudry (2003)
  • Cristina Birks (2004)
  • Ioana Luca (2005)
  • Scott Doucet (2006)
  • Stéphanie Bachand (2007)
  • Hana Boye (2008)
  • Cedric Soule (2009)
  • Perri Ravon (2010)
  • Jean-Paul Saucier Calderón (2011)
  • Anne-Claire Gayet (2012)
  • Claire Gunner (2013)
  • Jacinthe Poisson (2014)

5. Human Rights Watch, International Justice Program, New York City, USA


Human Rights Watch is the largest human rights organization based in the US, employing lawyers, journalists, and academics in seven internationally-located offices. HRW researchers conduct fact-finding investigations into human rights abuses in all regions of the world. The intern is placed in International Justice Program, and works on advocacy related to the international criminal tribunals. A McGill partnership with Human Rights Watch was established in 2002.

Type of work done by previous interns includes:

  • Conducting legal research in relation to international criminal justice issues in a range of countries;
  • Advocating and lobbying for HRW’s views with state representatives, at the UN, through news media outlets and with other NGOs;
  • Drafting reports, memos and correspondence;
  • Media monitoring.


  • Janina Fogels (2003)
  • Collin Smith (2004)
  • Geneviève Painter (2005)
  • Hugh Sandler (2006)
  • Balkees Jarrah (2007)
  • Jake Hirsch-Allen (2008)
  • Stavroula Papadopoulos (2009)
  • Naomi Greckol-Herlich (2010)
  • Emilie Conway (2011)
  • Will Colish (2012)
  • Marika Tremblay (2013)
  • Amanda Ghahremani (2014)

6. Ateneo Human Rights Center, Manila, the Philippines


The Ateneo Manila Law School houses the Ateneo Human Rights Center (AHRC), which was established in October 1986 as among the first university-based institutions for the protection and promotion of human rights in the Philippines. The AHRC seeks to realize its mandate through programs focused on the continuing formulation of human rights lawyers and advocates, the monitoring of the human rights situation in the Philippines and abroad, research, education, publications, and legal assistance to victims of human rights violations.

Type of work done by previous interns includes:

  • Analysing international involvements of the member States of the ASEAN et on the domestic legislation with regards to migrant workers’ rights and producing a report with recommendations;
  • Drafting et revising educational and promotional documents relating to future protection mechanisms of human rights en South-East Asia;
  • Participating in producing a training handbook on women’s rights;
  • Providing assistance in the teaching of certain courses (i.e. children rights in the Philippines;
  • Organizing social and cultural activities


  • Seth Earn (2007)
  • Guillaume Bigaouette (2008)
  • Mae Jane Nam (2009)
  • Christopher Maughan (2010)
  • Luke Brown (2011)
  • Melissa Austen  (2012)
  • Lia Bellefontaine (2013)
  • Katie Spillane (2014)

7. Maliiganik Tukisiiniakvik Legal Services

Maliiganik Tukisiiniakvik Legal Services is the legal aid office that serves the Baffin region of Nunavut. The lawyers work in criminal, family, poverty and civil law. The largest section is the criminal law section. The courtworkers working in Iqaluit and in communities throughout the territory do substantive legal work by representing clients in Justice of the Peace Court.

Type of work done by previous intern includes:

  • Conducting bail hearings at the Justice of the Peace Court;
  • Meeting with clients daily and representing them in the Justice of the Peace Court (JP Court);
  • Leading research projects for lawyers in the office;
  • Background research for several Charter applications and ultimately drafting the Charter applications;
  • Contacting clients by phone or by going to speak with them at the Royal Canadian Mounted Police Department (RCMP) Detachment, and preparing a plan of release with the client;
  • Leading research projects for lawyers in the office;
  • Attending a hearing of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in Iqaluit.


  • Chiara Fish  (2010)
  • Joannie Jacob (2011)
  • Chris Durrant (2012)
  • David Nugent (2013)
  • Martha Chertkow (2014)

8. The Equality Effect – Malawi


The Equality Effect develops creative legal solutions to address the inequality of women and girls in Africa who are subject to some of the most appalling human rights abuses in the world today (the equality effect currently works in Ghana, Kenya and Malawi). By using the law in imaginative and original ways, the equality effect achieves concrete change that can result in increased freedom from violence, improved health, and increased prosperity for women and girls. The equality effect, formerly known as the African and Canadian Women's Human Rights Project (ACWHRP), is an international network of human rights advocates (including grass roots community members, artists, musicians, film makers, health care workers, journalists, lawyers, teachers, students, judges and Parliamentarians) working together to improve the lives of women and girls by using existing human rights law to achieve concrete change, and the meaningful empowerment of women and girls.  We are human rights advocates, primarily but not exclusively from Canada, Ghana, Kenya and Malawi, that work collaboratively to learn from common experiences, to transform the sexist legal legacy inherited through the experience of colonialism, to achieve justice for women and girls.


  • Sasha Hart (2011)
  • Shantha Priya Morley (2012)
  • Silvia Neagu (2013)
  • Annie O’Dell (2014)

9. Disability Rights International – Mexico City, Mexico


Disability Rights International (DRI) is dedicated to promoting the human rights and full participation in society of people with disabilities worldwide. DRI documents human rights abuses, publishes reports on human rights enforcement, and promotes international oversight of the rights of people with mental disabilities.

Drawing on the skills and experience of attorneys, mental health professionals, human rights advocates, people with mental disabilities and their family members, DRI trains and supports advocates seeking legal and service system reform and assists governments in developing laws and policies to promote community integration and human rights enforcement for people with mental disabilities.

The organization is forging new alliances throughout the world to challenge the discrimination and abuse faced by people with mental disabilities, as well as working with locally based advocates to create new advocacy projects and to promote citizen participation and human rights for children and adults.


  • Keiran Gibbs (2011)
  • Roger Bill (2012)
  • Emily Hazlett (2013)
  • Iñaki Navarrete (2014)

10. Legal Action for Persons with Disabilities – Centre for Health, Human Rights and Disabilities, Uganda (joint placement)

Legal Action for Persons with Disabilities – Uganda

Legal Action for Persons with Disabilities (LAPD) was formed by lawyers with disabilities in 2005 as a national organization which provides free and sustainable legal aid to indigent PWDs, monitors compliance of disability related provisions in legislation, advocates for the protection of rights of PWDs, lobbies for policy reform and implementation, and raises public awareness.

The Center for Health, Human Rights and Development (CEHURD) is an indigenous, non-profit, research and advocacy organization which is pioneering the enforcement of human rights and the justiciability of the right to health in Eastern Africa. CEHURD was founded in 2007 and was registered under the laws of Uganda as a company limited by guarantee Certificate No. 114712. It was formed to contribute towards ensuring that laws and policies are used as principal tools for the promotion and protection of health and human rights of populations in Uganda and in the East African region. CEHURD realizes this through a set of programs: (1) Human Rights Advocacy ; (2) Community Empowerment; and (3) Research and Documentation.

CEHURD focuses its efforts on critical issues of human rights and health systems in East Africa such as sexual and reproductive health rights, trade and health, and medical ethics which affect the vulnerable and less-advantaged populations such as women, children, orphans, sexual minorities, people living with HIV/AIDS, persons with disabilities, internally-displaced persons, refugee populations and victims of violence, torture, disasters and conflict.


  • Miatta Gorvie (2012)
  • Lipi Mishra (2013)
  • Matthias Heilke (2014)

11.  Institute for Human Rights and Development in Africa (IHRDA) – Banjul, The Gambia 


IHRDA was founded in 1997 as a pan-African non-governmental organization based in Banjul, the Gambia. IHRDA works to create awareness about the African regional human rights mechanisms and to increase their accessibility, usage and effectiveness.  It has observer status with African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights (ACmHPR) and the African Committee on the Rights and Welfare of the Child (ACERWC), both organs of the African Union.

IHRDA’ s principal focus is on ensuring that the enforcement mechanisms of African human rights treaties are an effective instrument for redress of human rights violations on the continent.  IHRDA achieves its goals through four main programs areas: legal advocacy, litigation, capacity building, research and publication and more broadly cooperating with the African regional human rights system. 

Since its founding, IHRDA has worked to increase the number and quality of human rights cases brought to the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights [ACPHR], It has done this primarily through litigation training as well as launching or otherwise providing support to cases before the ACHPR. We now brought new litigation cases before the African Committee of Experts on the Rights and Welfare of the Child [ACERWC] and before the African Court of Human and People’s Rights [African Court] and also before Regional Court of Justice such the Economic Community of Western African States (ECOWAS) Court of Justice, the East African Court of Justice and the Southern African development Community (SADC)  Court of Justice.

For the last three years, IHRDA successfully defended several cases on citizenship and children's rights in Kenya (Nubian Children); on refugees' rights in Guinea; on migrants workers in Angola; on citizen rights, civil rights and discrimination in Mauritania, Congo DRC. 

The Institute was the first organization to publish the commission’s jurisprudence and  its compilation of decisions., IHRDA has also implemented a case law database which is currently accessible for free in English, French and Portuguese at http://caselaw.ihrda.org/


  • Jean-Marc Lacourcière (2013)
  • Guilhem de Roquefeuil (2014)

12. Oceans Beyond Piracy (OBP) - One Earth Future Foundation – Colorado, USA


Oceans Beyond Piracy (OBP) is a project of the One Earth Future Foundation, a privately funded and independent non-profit organization located in Colorado, USA. 

We focus on supporting sustainable, long-term solutions to maritime piracy.  Interns will work on a variety of tasks relevant to the legal and operational structures in place to address maritime piracy.  OBP has a particular geographic focus on activities in Somalia, India, and West Africa, and experience in, or knowledge of, these reasons is helpful.  We do not require interns to be at a specific point in their studies in order to be eligible. Relevant coursework in law would include maritime law, criminal law, and international law.

OBP was launched in 2010 with the intent to develop a response to maritime piracy through:

  • Mobilizing stakeholders from the maritime community
  • Developing public-private partnerships to promote long-term solutions at sea and ashore
  • Sustainable deterrence based on the rule of law

The work of OBP is founded upon the following principles:

  • Transparency: A sustainable solution to piracy will only be attained through transparent information-sharing and the development of a strong evidence base.
  • Inclusiveness: Because we believe that the solutions to maritime piracy lie with the stakeholders themselves, OBP actively engages and works alongside key experts and actors from every sector of the maritime community.
  • Shared Commitment: Solving piracy is a difficult and arduous process, requiring action by invested stakeholders. OBP remains committed to sharing the burden of seeking long-term, viable solutions to piracy.
  • Independence: We believe that OBP serves an important role as an unbiased independent contributor to global counter-piracy efforts. We are privately financed and our financial statements are made public.

OBP believes that the answers to the piracy problem should come from within the community of stakeholders. We work with an extensive - and growing - number of experts to find a solution to piracy. Through meetings and workshops we host, our research and analysis, and our development and encouragement of new cross-sector partnerships, we support the international community in its efforts to bring an end to contemporary maritime piracy.


  • Andrew Higdon (2013)
  • Kyle Best (2014)

13. Responsibility to Protect Program – One Earth Future Foundation, Colorado, USA


The Responsibility to Protect (R2P) declares that states have a responsibility to protect their citizens from mass atrocity crimes. When states are unable or unwilling to protect their populations, the responsibility to protect shifts to the international community. The international community may aid states in protection, or can intervene to enforce the principle. It is important to note that R2P does not exclusively refer to humanitarian or military intervention. R2P actions may also be diplomatic, economic, or legal.

One Earth Future’s R2P Program focuses specifically on the role of the business sector in implementing R2P. OEF believes that it is fundamentally in the interest of the business sector to support the development and implementation of R2P. At the most basic level, mass atrocities destabilize economies and businesses by damaging physical infrastructure and human capital, and reducing purchasing power and consumer markets. Ample evidence also points to the significant negative reputational impact for companies associated with mass atrocities.

OEF is an international NGO based near Boulder, Colorado. We conduct research and advocacy around governance-based solutions to armed conflict. OEF is developing a program to encourage non-state actors and business engagement in supporting the “Responsibility to Protect.”

Interns in this program will work on a variety of research and programmatic tasks surrounding the legal implications of state and non-state actors’ engagement in mass atrocities and humanitarian intervention. We do not require interns to be at a specific point in their studies in order to be eligible. Familiarity with the Responsibility to Protect, as laid out in various UN and academic writings, is helpful. Relevant coursework in law would include courses focusing on humanitarian intervention, international humanitarian law, international criminal law, and international organizations.


  • Laura Rhodes (2013)
  • Matthew Millman-Pilon (2014)

14. Shuraako Project – One Earth Future Foundation, Colorado, USA

Shuraako works to promote investment into promising business models and social enterprises in Somalia. Shuraako believes that job creation fosters stability and peace, and is the key to rebuilding Somalia. Developing the business sector generates financial and social revenues.
The project aims to help facilitate and coordinate ongoing efforts that support trade, investment and other economic development efforts in Somalia, including but not limited to: Security and Stabilization, Trade & Investment Regulation, Capacity Building & Training and Remittance & Banking Institutions.  Shuraako works with all stakeholders involved in this process


  • Jim Burman (2013)
  • Stacey Smdyo  (2014)

15. Mahanirban Calcutta Research Group – Calcutta, India


Born as a facilitating group in support of the peace movement in West Bengal, CRG is now well-known for its research, dialogues, and advocacy work. It has carved out a niche for itself in the scholar-activist world for its policy studies on autonomy, human rights, women’s dignity, issues of forced displacement and migration, peace and conflict resolution, citizenship, borders and border-conflicts, and other themes relevant to democracy. The emphasis that CRG places on the East and the Northeast in its research and dialogues has now resulted in a strong network of scholars, activists, and institutions in the region.

Interns will have the opportunity to work on research projects relating to immigration and refugee matters, including protection of refugees in India, the SAARC social charter, the Indian National Human Rights Commission and other legal and administrative law discourse on IDPs. Sponsored by the Oppenheimer Chair in Public Interanational Law


  • Charlotte-Anne Malischewski (2013)
  • Peter Grbac (2014)

16. Avocats sans frontières Canada (ASFC), Quebec City


This internship will take place entirely in French. Ce stage se déroulera entièrement en français.

ASFC est une ONG dont la mission est de soutenir la défense des droits des personnes les plus vulnérables par le renforcement de l’accès à la justice et à la représentation légale. Fondée au Canada en octobre 2002, ASFC compte sur plus de 25 employés à temps complet à son siège de Québec et sur le terrain, de même que sur environ 200 bénévoles. ASFC met actuellement en œuvre des programmes de coopération en Haïti, en Colombie et au Guatemala. Pour en savoir davantage: www.asfcanada.ca.

Comme stagiaire, vous participerez à la production du contenu juridique des programmes et des activités internationales d’ASFC, et seconderez la rédaction de documents juridiques d’ordre général, notamment les politiques, les principes et les manuels d’ASFC. De plus, vous serez appelé à participer à la vérification diligente du cadre légal et règlementaire applicable aux projets et effectuerez des recherches juridiques sur les thèmes requis ou utiles aux projets et aux activités. Vous contribuerez également à la préparation d’interventions ponctuelles et au suivi de thèmes juridiques d’intérêt général ou transversaux. Finalement, vous verrez à répondre à toute demande urgente et ponctuelle demandée par l’équipe des services juridiques.


  • Diya Bouchedid (2013)
  • Nicolas Aubin (2014)

17. Justice Department at the Akwesasne Mohawk Council - Cornwall, ON (near Canada/USA border)

Akwesasne borders the countries of Canada and the United States of America; the Canadian Provinces of Ontario and Quebec; and the American State of New York. Despite the apparent difficulties of this multi-jurisdictional location, this Mohawk Community of about 13,000 Peoples, has learned how to maneuver effectively, to make the best that we can of our situation. Despite the negative media coverage concerning the use of some of our People in unrestrained cross-border enterprise, our People have been able to create an honorable, and viable Mohawk society and a strong economic base for its People.

Over the past ten years, dynamic changes have provided this Mohawk Community the opportunity to responsibly manage their Infrastructure, Health and Social Services, Judicial and Law Enforcement System, Environment and Conservation, and Housing and Economic Initiatives.

At a time when the Government of Canada is advocating Partnerships and Native Self-Government, Akwesasne is well on its way, using its own initiative. We are ready to responsibly manage our internal structures, our numerous Human and Natural Resources, and to build a viable Sustainable Economy.

This internship is an opportunity to work in the community on legislation using the values of the community and principles of the Great Law of Peace in front of a Mohawk-run Court Law.  Interns will work closely with supervisors revising the Charter for the Akwesasne Review Commission to ensure the Courts judicial independence.


  • Cécile Capela (2014)

18. First Nations Child & Family Caring Society of Canada – Ottawa


The First Nations Child & Family Caring Society of Canada (the Caring Society) was developed at a national meeting of First Nations child and family service agencies (FNCFSA), held at the Squamish First Nation in 1998. Meeting delegates agreed that a national non-profit organization was required to provide research, policy, professional development and networking support to support FNCFSA in caring for First Nations children, youth and families.

Using a reconciliation framework that respectfully engages First Nation and non-Aboriginal peoples, the Caring Society provides high quality resources to support First Nations communities to empower children, youth and families. The award-winning Caring Society is proud to work with our partners in Canada and around the world to promote the rights of Indigenous children, youth and families.


  • Lucia Westin (2014)

19. L’organisation Aswat Nissa (Voix de femmes), Tunis, Tunisia (New for 2014)

Facebook: facebook.com/aswat.nissa

Profile in Huffington Post: www.huffpostmaghreb.com/2014/05/20/tunisie-aswat-nissa-_n_5358003.html

Basée à Tunis, cette association est née en 2011 de la volonté d’un groupe de femmes et d’hommes des suites de la révolution tunisienne. L’objectif de cette association est de travailler afin de permettre à la femme tunisienne de porter sa voix et de prendre la place qui lui revient dans la société. Depuis sa création, cette association vise à lutter contre toutes formes de discriminations basées sur le genre, à oeuvrer pour la promotion d'une culture égalitaire, à encourager la participation des femmes à la vie publique à travers le renforcement de leurs capacités et l'appui à leur leadership ainsi qu’à plaider pour l’intégration de l'approche genre dans les politiques publiques. 

Aswat Nissa souhaiterait ainsi l’atteinte d’une société adhérant aux idéaux de justice sociale et respectueuse de la dignité de la personne, conformément aux valeurs universelles des droits humains. Elle souhaiterait également une société où les individus responsables et égaux en droits jouissent d’opportunités égales et d’une citoyenneté effective. Les différentes valeurs de l’ONG sont notamment l’égalité, la transparence, le partage, l’indépendance et la tolérance

20. National Human Rights Council of Morocco – Rabat, Morocco (New for 2015)


The establishment of the National Human Rights Council (CNDH) is committed to protecting citizens’ rights and freedoms. This organization is a recently created national institution for the protection and defense of human rights and freedoms in Morocco, in conformity with the Paris Principles.

21. Mental Disability Advocacy Centre – Budapest, Hungary (New for 2015)


The Mental Disability Advocacy Center (MDAC) is an international human rights organisation which advances the rights of children and adults with intellectual disabilities and psycho-social disabilities. MDAC uses law to promote equality and social inclusion through strategic litigation, advocacy, research and monitoring and capacity-building. MDAC operates at the global level as well as regional and domestic levels in Europe and Africa.

MDAC is headquartered in Budapest, Hungary and was registered as a foundation by the Budapest Capital Court (registration number 8689) in November 2002. The Open Society Foundations (OSF) founded MDAC and continues to be one of its donors. MDAC has special consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council, participatory status with the Council of Europe and is a member of the Fundamental Rights Platform of the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights.

22. Women For A Change, Cameroon (WFAC) Yaoundé, Cameroon (New for 2015)

Instagram: http://instagram.com/Wfaccmr  
Twitter https://twitter.com/Wfaccmr  
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/WFACCameroon

WFAC, founded in 2009 is a nonprofit feminist, women-led organisation working for the promotion of women and girls sexual and reproductive health rights, leadership and development. The association strategic objectives among others are to:

a) Advocate against sexual violence, raise awareness on HIV/AIDs, body autonomy, healthy dating relationship and attitudes towards sexuality, sexual roles and adolescent Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights, through policy advocacy, peer-to-peer education and / or conferences, campaigns and workshop trainings.

b) Build alliances with men and other networks with focus on feminisms, and the promotion of women empowerment and gender justice

c) Use Short Messaging Services (SMS) & social media portals to empower young people to lead community actions that promote equality and justice for all, raise awareness on the status of women & girls, and to collect complaints / information from survivors of violence, sexual harassment and assault and facilitate their access to legal redress as well gaining justice.


a) Capacity Building: This is aim at enhancing both staff, members and community participants’ (young people, adolescents and women/girls) leadership skills especially around women and girls sexual and reproductive health rights, leadership and development

b) Advocacy & community outreach : we mobilise and form coalitions with community and grassroots networks, share skills and knowledge on communication & mobilisation tactics for effective policy change and community development.

c) Communication and Networking: WFAC uses alternative tools like the SMS, social media, print media to connect with the public, raise awareness and also bring massive visibility to women and girls needs locally and globally.