Human Rights Internships

Organizations for Human Rights Internships

American Friends Service Committee - through education programs, worldwide development projects, policy papers, lobbying efforts, and its Quaker United Nations Office, AFSC seeks to end war and poverty, improve conditions in mental hospitals and prisons, and achieve racial equality.  Volunteers complete administrative tasks and write for the Information Services Department. 

Amnesty International - a worldwide movement of people who campaign for internationally recognized human rights. AI’s mission is to undertake research and action focused on preventing and ending grave abuses of the rights to physical and mental integrity, freedom of conscience and expression, and freedom from discrimination, within the context of its work to promote all human rights. 

CARE - an international relief and development organization working to improve the lives in developing nations throughout the world.  Projects include rehabilitating and building infrastructure, training local community leaders to run government agencies, starting businesses, and providing technical assistance on matters in agriculture, banking, family planning, and health care.  Interns work in the areas of finance, government relations, fundraising, construction, human resources, internal audit, health care, agriculture, food security, population, and small enterprise development.

Catholic Relief Services  - CRS assists the poor and disadvantaged, leveraging the teachings of the Gospel of Jesus Christ to alleviate human suffering, promote development of all people and to foster charity and justice throughout the world. Counts on the collaboration of a host of other global partners and allies to help carry out its mission. 

Commission on Gender Equity, New York City - The Commission is an advisory body that supports City agencies in dismantling institutional barriers for women and girls in order to achieve the Mayor's commitment to reduce gender-based inequity.  The CGE recommends policies that promote the economic, social, political and physical well-being of women and girls regardless of their race, ethnicity, class, gender identity or sexual orientation.

Ford Foundation - the purpose is to strengthen democratic values, reduce poverty and injustice, promote cooperation, advance human achievement in an attempt to aid every society in facing the challenges of creating a political, economic and social system that promotes peace, human welfare, and the sustainability of the environment on which life depends.  The foundation works by making grants or loans that create awareness and encourage initiatives towards problems faced by individuals across the world.  Interns work in programs focusing on human development and reproductive health; community resource development, economic development; human rights and international cooperation and many others departments.

Fourth World Movement -  the FWM gathers men and women of different faiths, nationalities, ages, and backgrounds, and undertakes three lines of action: grassroots presence and involvement among very poor families and communities; research into poverty, undertaken with the poor themselves; and campaigning and mobilizing public opinion at various levels.  The Volunteer Corps emphasize education and citizenship, and include family centers, artistic and cultural programs, and discussion forums in which poor families can voice their concerns.

Girls Inc. - national non-profit that has provided vital educational programs to millions of American girls, particularly those in high-risk, underserved areas. Innovative programs help girls confront subtle societal messages about their value and potential, and prepare them to lead successful, independent, and fulfilling lives.

Human Rights Watch - a leading human rights advocacy organization based in New York City and Washington, DC. Since 1978, they have worked in the United States and abroad to create a secure and humane world – advancing justice, human dignity, and respect for the rule of law. Human Rights Watch stands with victims and activists to prevent discrimination, to uphold political freedom, to protect people from inhumane conduct in wartime, and to bring offenders to justice. Investigates and exposes human rights violations and holds abusers accountable. Challenges governments and those who hold power to end abusive practices and respect international human rights law. 

Institute for Policy Studies – one of the nation’s leading formulators of progressive ideas. Interns are assigned to Corporate Accountability/National Tax Policy/Feminist Agenda Projects, Global Economy, Membership Development/Publications Promotion, Newsletter, Pathways to the 21st Century, Press/Public Relations, Drug Policy Project, Peace and Security, Progressive Challenge, Sustainable Energy and Economy Network, and UN Project. 

The International Rescue Committee (IRC)- a world leader in relief, rehabilitation, protection, post-conflict development, resettlement services and advocacy for those uprooted or affected by violent conflict and oppression.

Legal Aid Society, Juvenile Rights Division - advocates for children in Family Court neglect, abuse and delinquency cases. Represents 90% of children who appear before the Family Court in New York City on child protective, termination of parental rights, PINS (persons in need of supervision), and juvenile delinquency petitions. 

Lower Eastside Girls Club - dedicated to providing a place where girls 8-18 can grow, learn, have fun, and develop confidence in themselves and their ability to make a difference in the world. By delivering strong and innovative arts, athletic, cultural, life-skills and career oriented programming, provides girls with the vision to plan - and the tools to build - their future.

NetAid - a non-profit organization that educates, inspires, and empowers young people to fight global poverty. 

New York City Commission on Human Rights - the Governmental Commission set-up to protect and enforce the New York City Human Rights Law and protect citizens from discrimination. 

The New York Women’s Foundation - combines hands-on philanthropy with community driven projects to change the lives of low-income women and girls. An alliance of women helping low-income women and girls in the five boroughs to achieve sustained economic security through expanded opportunities.

Sanctuary for Families - dedicated to the safety, healing, and self-sufficiency of battered women and their children. To that end, we offer a broad range of high-quality services including shelter, legal assistance, and counseling.  

Speak Truth to Power - a not-for-profit organization that seeks to proactively engage the general public in an ongoing series of issue-related programs and events, bringing human rights activists and their work into contact with ever-increasing audiences. Uses literature and performance.   

United States Fund for UNICEF - supports the work of the United Nations Children's Fund by raising support for its programs and increasing public awareness of the challenges facing the world's children.

Vera Institute of Justice - works closely with leaders in government and civil society to improve the services people rely on for safety and justice. Vera develops innovative, affordable programs that often grow into self-sustaining organizations, studies social problems and current responses, and provides practical advice and assistance to government officials in New York and around the world.  

Volunteers for Peace - nonprofit volunteer organization has been coordinating work camps since the 1920s. VFP volunteers work on community projects, which are sanctioned by the United Nations, under the auspices of over 2,200 programs in more than 80 countries.  Projects are available in a variety of fields, particularly construction, ecology, social work, agriculture, and archaeology. 

Women’s Institute for Freedom of the Press – seeks to increase communication among women and with the general public.  Publishes an international directory of women’s media, and a booklet about media issues of special concern to women.  Interns work in Research, Writing,
Graphic Arts, Publications, and Archives. 

The Women’s Law Project- a nonprofit public interest legal advocacy organization that seeks to advance the legal, social, and economic status of women through litigation, public policy advocacy, public education, and individual counseling. Based in Pennsylvania. 

Places to Look for Internships Online

Sources of Funding

Contact the Office of Career Development for information on sources of funding