Strategic Advocacy Human Rights (SAHR) has announced the Gender Justice Legal Defenders Fellowship 2020–21 offering aspiring female and gender-nonconforming human rights lawyers and activists a paid opportunity to take on a sexual-based violence or discrimination case with mentorship and support from an expert human rights lawyer.
- Fellows will identify a specific case of sexual-based violence or discrimination;
- Fellows will execute a chosen intervention towards justice, reparations, and accountability.
- The awarded fellows will learn critical legal skills including fact-finding, collecting and documenting evidence, building a case, and drafting claims and petitions.
- The goal is to think and work like a lawyer to hold offending persons and institutions accountable while shedding light on the abuses.
- Fellows will work on their case a minimum of 20 hours/week for a duration of six months.
Fellows are expected to meet the following:
- Shed light on ongoing abuses and bring forth alternative narratives in relation to these abuses.
- Re-shape narratives based on the lived experience of survivors.
- Elevate the voices and experiences of survivor-advocates who face violence and discrimination.
- Fellows (or group of Fellows if applying as such) will receive a total stipend of USD $3,000.00 to be disbursed in installments. The stipend can be used to cover personal and project-related expenses (including payment of a “salary”).
SAHR will work with the fellow to:
- Develop the cause of action
- Analyze the violations vis-à-vis national and international laws
- Fact-find and collect evidence
- Craft legal arguments rooted in gender-equitable interpretations of religious, national and international laws and draft letters of claims and petitions
- Map out counter-arguments to anticipate backlash and rebuttals;
- Execute the chosen intervention.
Fellows can expect to develop the following skills:
- Command over the laws relating to gender violence and discrimination.
- Knowledge of procedure for obtaining remedies.
- Ability to use human rights jurisprudence to draft arguments and responses to challenging harmful gender and sexual stereotypes.
- Capacity to lead a collective using survivor-centered approaches.
SAHR welcomes you to apply either as an individual or a group, so long as you:
- identify as a woman, trans or gender non-conforming person;
- Are you a human rights defender accompanying survivors of widespread or systematic Sexual and Gender-based violence on their quest for justice?
- SAHR welcomes cases involving survivors from underrepresented and under-resourced communities who are rendered vulnerable by intersecting inequalities women and girls with disabilities, women, and girls of color, LGBTQIA2S community, afro-descendant, indigenous and immigrant girls and women, as well as those living in urban slum areas, rural areas, refugee camps, occupied territories and in conflict-affected settings.
- Are leading an ongoing project on interpersonal and institutional prejudice (or have a clear idea for one);
- Are in contact with or can readily access survivors of sexual and reproductive rights discrimination/violence for the project;
- Can connect the concerning violation to institutional action or negligence (either by the state or non-state actor);
- Can demonstrate that a strong command of the law and ability to use legal or other accountability procedures are essential to your project;
- Are based in or have significant ties to survivors in the Global South;
- Are proficient in English and the local language or dialect which survivors speak;
- Have experience in community organizing or activism
Additionally, you will be given preferential consideration if:
- You are below the age of 40 at the time of applying
- You can demonstrate how you will use what you learn through this Fellowship to advance gender justice in your future professional endeavors
- You have been directly affected by gender discrimination and/or violence.
- You have or are seeking a career in law or legal-based activism.
For more information, visit https://www.sa-hr.org/