Volunteer legal advisors – Colombia, Ivory Coast, Peru

Position: Several volunteer legal advisor positions
Countries: Colombia (Bogotá and in regions), Ivory Coast (Abidjan) and Peru (Lima)
Duration: Eight months
Starting date: As soon as possible
Working languages: Spanish and French
Conditions: The mandates are of a voluntary nature. All costs related to the assignment (food, housing, insurance, airplane tickets) are covered by the program. The mandate is unaccompanied. The volunteers must participate in pre-departure training and preparation sessions. This call is open to all candidates.

Some mandates can be recognised as an international internship for the École du Barreau du Québec and a priority will be given to the candidates who are eligible to those internships. If a candidate of the École du Barreau du Québec is selected, he or she will be granted a scholarship of 15 000$. The costs covered by the program will then be adjusted accordingly. For Bar internships, the duration of a mandate is 11 months (8 on the field and 3 in Quebec City, as LWBC’s Head Office).


The Project “Protection of the rights of children, women and other vulnerable communities” (PRODEF) is implemented by Lawyers Without Borders Canada (LWBC) in consortium with the International bureau for children’s rights (IBCR) within the framework of the Voluntary cooperation program financed by Global Affairs Canada. It aims to improve the protection of rights of children, women, poor and marginalized communities as well as strengthening democracy and the rule of law through access to justice. As part of the Project, volunteers are deployed to support and help strengthen the capacity of local partners, mainly civil society organizations working in the field of human rights.


The security of the volunteers and other collaborators is the main concern of LWBC and its partners. Several measures and security protocols are applied by the local personnel, the expatriates, the volunteers and the personnel involved in short-term missions.

The selected candidates will be formed on safety and will have to commit to the respect of the different measures and protocols. Because the activities are executed only if there are sufficient guarantees and if the conditions are optimal, the Consortium can postpone or annul the deployment of the selected volunteers, particularly on security grounds.

Position description

The volunteer legal advisors are called upon to perform various legal tasks linked to human rights. While some volunteers particularly contribute to the documentation, the analysis of issues related to human rights and the drafting of thematic reports, others participate in the proposition of legal reforms, analyse jurisprudence or are involved in cases of strategic litigation that are brought before national and international tribunals and bodies.

More practically, the volunteers can be required to complete the following tasks:

  • Carry out research and analysis, and participate in the drafting of legal documents on the issues of human rights, children rights, international criminal law, transitional justice, international humanitarian law, gender justice or sexual violence;
  • Contribute to the preparation of the necessary documentation needed to participate to the thematic hearings before the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights, if need be
  • Analyze jurisprudence and systematize the information properly;
  • Organize training workshops for civil society members and public officials;
  • Coordinate the collection, analysis and triangulation of information for the preparation of documents;
  • Participate in advocacy activities with the authorities;
  • Carry out legal research related to specific cases of serious human rights violations;
  • Analyze issues and participate in the development of legal strategies and arguments;
  • Participate in the documentation and systematization of cases, including in the organization and classification of the evidence;
  • Take part in meetings with various stakeholders involved in identified cases (lawyers, representatives of the attorney general’s office, victims, etc.);
  • Attend hearings of identified cases;
  • Participate in the drafting of documents submitted to national courts or international bodies;
  • Write articles on the legal work performed (mainly for the LWBC website);
  • Support the strengthening of organizational capacities, through work organisation, information management, communications, etc.


  • University education law;
  • Fluency in spoken and written Spanish;
  • Fluency in spoken and written French;
  • Good knowledge of international criminal law and/or human rights law and/or international humanitarian law and/or gender justice and sexual violence and/or transitional justice;
  • Interest in promoting and defending human rights and strengthening members of civil society
  • Strong skills in written composition and legal research;
  • Ability to quickly assimilate domestic law concepts in order to harmonize them with knowledge of national or international law;
  • Ability to adapt to sometimes difficult working conditions and situations (restrictive security measures, limited resources, logistical difficulties, working under pressure etc.);
  • Ability to work as a member of a team;
  • Ability to integrate various work environments;
  • Willingness to travel within the country of deployment;
  • Basic computer skills (Word, Excel, Outlook);
  • Absolute respect for confidentiality.


  • Masters or doctorate degree in law;
  • Previous experience in similar functions;
  • Experience in program management and knowledge of results-based management tools
  • Previous experience with communities or vulnerable groups;
  • Previous work experience in Latin America or West Africa or knowledge of the social, economic and legal contexts in developing or post-conflict countries.

Eligibility requirements

  • Be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident;
  • Be covered by the health care insurance plan provided by a province or by a private plan;
  • Be available to attend a pre-departure training session.

Interested candidates should submit their application (cover letter and curriculum vitae) in Spanish for the mandates in Colombia and Peru or in French for the mandate in Ivory Coast, by completing the online form available at the following address: http://cooperationvolontaireasfcibcr.com/participez/ under the rubric “Volunteer legal advisors – Colombia, Ivory Coast and Peru” before June 3, 2018 at 11:59pm.

We thank every candidate for their interest. However, only selected candidates will be contacted for an interview.


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