2010 Summer Internships

Program details

The following CLA-ACE internships were offered for the summer of 2010. Click here to see some reflections from the field from our 2010 interns.

Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA-Kenya) – Nairobi, Kenya

Intern: Jane Marsden (University of Calgary)

Position: Internship with Kenya Office of the Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA).

Background: The Federation of Women Lawyers is a non-profit, non-partisan membership organization committed to the creation of a society that is free from all forms of discrimination against women. Membership to FIDA-Kenya is open to Kenyan women lawyers and women law students. The organization was started in 1985 after the third United Nations Conference on Women held in Nairobi. As the oldest women’s rights organization in Eastern Africa, it has carved a niche as a fearless defender of women’s rights at the international, national and local level. At the local level, FIDA-Kenya is connected to the local woman through its aid clinics and community action groups that have empowered to grass ‘root’ women rights at the municipal levels. At the national level, FIDA-Kenya is connected with like-minded players with whom it shares practices and innovations. These include strategic institutions of government through which FIDA-Kenya exerts policy and practice influence. FIDA-Kenya has a long-term working relationship with parliament and the judiciary and in recognition of its contribution to women rights struggles, FIDA-Kenya sits in a number of strategic committees situated within the government. FIDA-Kenya uses these spaces to influence transformative change for indigent woman at national level. At the international level, FIDA-Kenya is recognized foremost as an African actor in the area of women empowerment. FIDA-Kenya enjoys special consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) and observer status with the African Commission on Human and People’s Rights. FIDA-Kenya uses these international spaces to bring pressure to bear on the Kenya policy makers in favour of marginalized women.  More information may be found on their website here.

Location: Nairobi, Kenya

Job Description: Interns will work as part of a team in one of the major programming areas of the organization. The intern will work within the Transformative Justice program, which focuses on constitutional and legislative law reform, engaging the Kenyan Parliament, and civic engagement within communities on women’s rights. The intern may also contribute to research required by the ACWHRP.

Essential Skills:

  • Extremely self-motivated
  • Adaptable cross-culturally
  • Professional demeanor (even in frustrating circumstances)
  • Excellent oral, written and research skills
  • Communication skills
  • Open to new experiences
  • Able to work well with others

Desirable Skills:

  • Knowledge of Kenyan law
  • Workshop experience

Period: May – August (flexibility for a fourteen to sixteen week period, depending on intern availability)

ECPAT – Bangkok, Thailand

Intern: Chelsea Hishon (Windsor)

Position: Internship with the Bangkok-based international secretariat of ECPAT, an international child rights organization that works to eliminate the commercial sexual exploitation of children. The ECPAT acronym stands for ‘ End Child Prostitution, Child Pornography and Trafficking of Children for Sexual Purposes’.

Background: ECPAT is a network of organisations and individuals working together to eliminate the commercial sexual exploitation of children.  It seeks to encourage the world community to ensure that children everywhere enjoy their fundamental rights free from all forms of commercial sexual exploitation. ECPAT works with a specific focus on international legal instruments and national laws related to the commercial sexual exploitation of children, particularly child prostitution, child pornography, and child trafficking for sexual purposes.

Location: Bangkok, Thailand

Job Description: The focus of the intern’s work will be researching national legislation and procedures relating to ECPAT’s mandate.  The intern will also be expected to assist the Programme Officer (Legal Programme) to support ECPAT initiatives.  The intern will research and collect legislation defining and prohibiting the creation, possession, use, display, etc. of child pornography, on a country-by-country basis.  Depending upon the time available, the intern may then research and collect legislation, on a country-by-country basis, defining and prohibiting child prostitution and related activities, such as the solicitation, legalization and decriminalization of prostitution, etc.

Essential Skills:

  • Experience in working with human rights and social development issues specifically as these relate to the rights of children
  • Exposure to children’s rights or other social issues

Desirable Skills:

  • Ability to communicate effectively in major languages used by members of the ECPAT network e.g. Spanish and/or French
  • Experience in working with children

Period: May – August (could be extended to December).

Women in Law and Development in Africa (WiLDAF) – Takoradi, Ghana or Ho, Ghana

Intern: Jessica Fletcher (University of British Columbia)

Intern: Alayna Kolodziechuk (Dalhousie University)

Position: Internship with WiLDAF, a Pan-African non-governmental, non profit bringing together organisations and individuals using a variety of tools, including law, to promote a culture for the exercise and respect for women’s rights in Africa.  The office in Accra specializes in women’s legal rights, children’s rights and women and governance issues in Ghana.
There are two internship positions with WiLDAF.

Background: The network was established at a regional conference held in February 1990 in Harare, Zimbabwe whose theme was “Women, Law and Development: Networking for Empowerment in Africa.”  WiLDAF was the product of a year-long process or organization and inquiry, involving NGOs and governmental projects devoted to empowering women and improving their status in Africa.

Location:  Accra, Ghana

Job Description: Interns will work as part of a team to help fulfill the annual plan for 2009.  Currently, WiLDAF is involved with a number of political governance activities, including workshops, public education, and analysis of political events from a gender perspective.  The organization also requires help in more practical areas, including media/communications as well internet and website skills as they are trying to improve their outreach.

Essential Skills:

  • Extremely self-motivated
  • Adaptable cross-culturally
  • Professional demeanor (even in frustrating circumstances)
  • Excellent oral, written and research skills
  • Communication skills
  • Open to new experiences
  • Able to work well with others

Desirable Skills

  • Communications experience (media work)
  • Internet and website skills (uploading information to website, etc.)
  • Fundraising skills
  • Workshop experience

Period: mid-May-August (with flexibility on either end)

Center for Public Interest Law (CEPIL) – Accra, Ghana

Intern: Sandrina Atohi (McGill University)

Intern: Annabel Busbridge (Université de Montréal)

Position: Internship with CEPIL, a rights based non-governmental not-for-profit organization established in 1999.  CEPIL’s mission statement is: To continually strive for justice and fairness especially for the poor and marginalised in society by working to improve democratic governance, rule of law and ensuring accountability of public and private actors through advocacy, litigation, social mobilisation and research.

There are two internship positions with CEPIL.

Background: CEPIL was founded in 1999. CEPIL grew out of discussions between Dr. Dominic Ayine (currently Executive Director of CEPIL) and Mr. Charles Abugre (then Executive Director of the Integrated Social Development Sector or ISODEC) about issues of public and private accountability in Ghana’s mining sector.  These discussions led to broader thinking about the need to protect the rights of vulnerable mining communities. With assistance from ISODEC and the Third World Network, Dr. Ayine set about establishing CEPIL and engaging in research relating to human rights promotion and protection through public interest litigation.  CEPIL now has a track record of public interest and human rights litigation, including test cases filed in Ghana national courts. CEPIL also researches and publishes information on public interest law issues, and creates various fora for debate on socio-legal issues.

Location:  Accra, Ghana

Job Description: Interns will work as part of a team in one of the major project areas of the organization.  (Projects currently active include the mining communities legal support and human rights programme, as well as the housing rights program.). The CLA-ACE student will be working on housing rights in Ghana, and assist with the development of a handbook on these rights for use. CEPIL also conducts workshops on human rights from time to time, and students may participate in the design and implementation of these workshops.

Essential Skills:

  • Extremely self-motivated
  • Adaptable cross-culturally
  • Professional demeanor (even in frustrating circumstances)
  • Excellent oral and written skills
  • Communication skills
  • Open to new experiences
  • Able to work well with others
  • Excellent research skills

Desirable Skills:

  • Interest and experience in public interest litigation
  • Workshop experience

Period: mid-May-August (with flexibility on either end)

Yukon River Inter-Tribal Watershed Council (YRITWC) – Alaska and Yukon

Intern: Frances Middleton (University of New Brunswick)

Intern: Lauren Whyte (University of British Columbia)

Position: Internship with the Yukon River Inter-Tribal Watershed Council.

Background: The Yukon River Inter-Tribal Watershed Council (YRITWC) is an international organization with 501(c)(3) non-profit status in the United States and not-for profit status in Canada. As a coalition of sovereign Tribal and First Nation governments, we were founded in 1997 by a group of 56 chiefs and elders who gathered to discuss their concern about increased cancers and other health problems in human communities and game species within the Yukon River watershed. From this gathering and based on these concerns, the Watershed Council was formed to restore the River and to protect it from further contamination. The long-term vision is of the organization is to be able to once again drink clean water directly from the Yukon River as our ancestors did for thousands of years before us. Today, 70 Indigenous governments within the watershed are actively participating in the coalition through the signing and enactment of an Inter-Tribal Accord that governs the YRITWC and gives each signatory government seat on our Board of Directors.  Noting that the indigenous communities are all connected and have a common interest in protecting the watershed, the Accord commits the signatories to cooperate and consult with each other on all actions that could affect the environmental and cultural integrity of the region while respecting the inherent sovereignty of each individual Tribe and First Nation.  The YRITWC maintains offices in Fairbanks and Anchorage, Alaska, USA, and Whitehorse, Yukon Territory, Canada, with a staff of fifteen.

There are two internships at the YRITWC.

Location: Anchorage, Alaska and Whitehorse, Yukon

Job Description: The intern will have the opportunity to be engaged in research regarding land and water rights. The possibility of researching federal sovereignty rights related to industrial hemp production exists if the intern is so inclined. Additionally, the intern will have the chance to work in the field within our Water Quality Monitoring Program and BackHaul Program. The intern will be asked to assist with the preparation of the YRITWC Strategic Planning Meeting which will be held in June 2010 in the Yukon Territory. This meeting will involve the entire YRITWC Executive Board. During the internship, the possibility of assisting with advocacy efforts may arise and the development of organizational structure and promotional materials will also be welcome.

Desired Skills:

  • Research skills
  • Advocacy skills
  • Interest and/or experience in environmental/water/sovereignty legal issues
  • Interest and/or experience in northern aboriginal issues
  • Can work independently as well as in a team
  • Good communication skills

Period: May- August (with some flexibility on either end)

Hukumonline (HOL) – Jakarta, Indonesia

Intern: Andrew Christie (University of Ottawa)

InternShamim Shakibaei (University of New Brunswick)

Position: Internship with Hukumonline in Jakarta, Indonesia.

Background: Established in 2000 by several Indonesian lawyers committed to law reform, PT. Justika Siar Publika (JSP – the publisher of Hukumonline) provides direct and timely access to a range of quality legal information products for both Indonesian and foreign legal professionals, corporate and government entities. JSP is committed to providing comprehensive and accurate data while continuing to develop innovative products and services for all their subcribers and users. HOL continues to take pride in providing the public with access to reliable legal information, thoughtful, well-researched analysis and commentary on current events as well as free legal advice targeted to vulnerable groups. HOL strives to provide genuine access to justice for a wide population accross Indonesia through its online platform, supported by a unique business model.

There are two internships available at HOL.

Location: Jakarta, Indonesia.

Job Description: The intern will work with the HOL team to ensure the relevance and quality of online publications, including free legal information that is especially geared to communities targeted by HOL for improved access to justice. They will also work to draft “professional quality” website content including researching and drafting news briefs, news stories, editorials, and position papers.

Desired Skills:

  • excellent researching and drafting skills in English
  • demonstrable skills in researching and drafting at least some of the following: legal memos, case summaries, legal positions and public policy/position papers, news articles, and profiles.
  • successful candidates will have working experience in some aspect of the operation of the legal system (common or civil law) and/or a background in legal studies.
  • ability to work independantly
  • mature attitude
  • clear ability to work in culturally complex, small, resource-challenged organizations.

Canadian Lawyers Abroad – Avocats canadiens à l’étranger (CLA-ACE)

Intern: Kristen Allen (Queen’s University)

Position: CLA-ACE is a not-for-profit organization that is committed to serving the legal needs of developing countries by harnessing the experience and skills of Canadian lawyers and law students in the areas of good governance, the rule of law and human rights.

Background: CLA-ACE was incorporated as a not-for-profit in 2005 and has grown quickly as a young and vibrant Canadian organization. Our Student Program includes a Student Chapter program and a Summer Internship Program. To date, CLA-ACE has ten Student Chapters nation-wide that participate in a variety of educational activities consistent with the organization’s mandate. The Student Internship program also offers a number of different positions this summer to law students overseas (Thailand, Ghana, Kenya) and in Canada (Yukon and Ottawa/Toronto).

Location: Ottawa, Toronto, or other (flexible)

Job Description: CLA-ACE seeks a summer intern to assist the staff in developing the 2010-2011 Student Chapter program. This will include developing next year’s theme, drafting materials on the theme, researching possible speakers, and interacting with the presidents of the Student Chapters. The intern will also help to coordinate the summer internship program, assist with the monitoring of the process and feedback stages. Other tasks may include legal research, fundraising research, drafting of press releases, interacting with various legal faculty personnel, and interacting with the media.

Desired Skills:

  • Knowledge of the mandate and goals of the organization
  • Communication skills
  • Drafting skills
  • Research skills
  • Confidence
  • Self-starter and creative thinker
  • Entrepreneurial

Thanks to this year’s Sponsors:

Comments on this entry are closed.