Human Rights Internship Programmes

Challenge yourself, work on your personal development, learn from dedicated and passionate colleagues and assist an inspirational organisation in their work towards social justice and the promotion of human rights. Our human rights internships give you the chance to make a genuine difference in the lives of some of the most vulnerable members of South African society whilst gaining a valuable insight into what daily life working for NGOs or advocacy organisations is really like.

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Human Rights internships - quick video overview
The best Human Rights Internship Programmes in Africa?

The best human rights internships in Cape Town?

We think so. We pride ourselves on delivering customised internship placements and on the ground support that offer life-changing, valuable professional experiences. Since the end of apartheid in 1994, one of the fundamental aspects of South Africa’s constitution has been the defence of every individual’s Human Rights. However, despite this, the country still faces huge social and economic challenges, and in Cape Town there are a large number of government and non-government organisations attempting to address these issues and promote social equality.

Our programme provides interns with the opportunity to assist some truly inspiring organisations with their work towards social justice and the promotion of Human Rights. Opportunities in this field could include working with refugees, the prevention of human trafficking and child labour, the advocacy of women’s rights, youth empowerment and HIV/AIDS prevention and education. An internship in this field will not only contribute to your own personal development and increase your cultural awareness, but it will give you the chance to improve the lives of some of the most vulnerable members of society. Read on for a full overview of the best human rights internships in Africa.


Human Rights Internship Programme Overview

Here's what you can expect from the programme in a nutshell!

Human Right Internship Key Skills:

  • Negotiation
  • Project management
  • Research
  • Report writing
  • Communication and writing skills
  • Critical thinking and problem solving

Academic & Career Benefits

  • Work alongside and learn from extremely dedicated, passionate and determined people.
  • Demonstrate your commitment and passion to future employers.
  • Develop valuable skills needed to kick start your career in human rights and advocacy.
  • Gain a valuable insight into what daily life working for NGOs or advocacy organisations is really like and discover more about your passions and strengths.
  • Challenge yourself and improve your personal development.

Ideal Internship Applicant

  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  • Proficient in English.
  • A passion for advocacy and helping others
  • A good understanding of South African history and current social inequalities.

Programme highlights:

  • Work alongside and learn from some incredibly dedicated, determined and passionate people.
  • Help South Africa in its work towards social equality and reduced poverty.
  • Enhance your personal development and cultural awareness.
  • Help improve the lives of some of the most vulnerable members of South African society.
  • Build an impressive CV and demonstrate to future employers that you are adaptable, motivated and passionate.

Minimum Requirements

  • Minimum age: 18
  • Completed (or will have completed) A2-Levels or equivalent
  • Minimum of 2 weeks duration, no maximum
  • Not a resident of South Africa


Skills you'll hone through your Human Rights internship

Of course, the list is much longer - but these are the skills our intern alumni reported back that they grew in the most!

Problem Solving
Report writing
Critical thinking
Ethical behaviour
Understanding client’s needs


Turbo charge your career in Human Rights

What are you waiting for - get started now!


Human Rights internship programme reviews & ratings

We managed to grab some detailed interviews from previous interns on this programme, you can click on them below.

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Yes. I really enjoyed my time with Bridging Gaps! Everyone else I met who was working through a different internship provider was envious that we were on this program in comparison to theirs.
Kitty Ive

A hypothetical Human Rights Internship Programme

What might your programme in this career field look like? Here's how it has typically shaped up for our alumni!

Week One

Arrival & orientation. Introduction to Cape Town, your accommodation and your internship host organisation and colleagues.

Internship Programmes South Africa - Hypothetical week 1
Internship Programmes South Africa - Hypothetical week 2

Week Two

Get stuck into your human rights internship placement and establish yourself with your organisation. Come to our free social events.

Week Three

Enjoy a great work-life balance, getting out and about to see the sites alongside working hard on your internship.

Internship Programmes South Africa - Hypothetical week 3
Internship Programmes South Africa - Hypothetical week 4

Week Four

Pick up more responsibility in your internship as you prove your capability. Enjoy regular activities in Cape Town outside of work. Come to another social!

Week Five

Now you're flying (metaphorically) at work, you'll be more and more autonomous. Expect to pick up even more challenges!


Week Six

Internship is going swimmingly, now go and do something crazy like swimming with some great white sharks or abseiling off of a mountain.

Week Seven

Regularly enjoy the benefits of Cape Town and at work, gather materials needed for portfolio (e.g. references from us and provider).


Week Eight

Putting the finishing touches to your internship and gathering feedback from us and your internship provider for use in your academic / career portfolio. Finalise paperwork for university (if needed)

Download and read a free guide.

13 Essential Insights for a Fulfilling and Safe Internship in Cape Town


Why others apply for Human Rights internship programmes

Here's what others said when they applied. Some of these people came just for this career area, some mixed it with other career fields too...


Human Rights internship programme features

What makes our internship programmes a worthwhile investment? Here's a swift overview of what you can expect!

Choice of two programmes

We have two primary programmes to suit your needs. In some instances we also offer virtual placements.

Unlimited duration as standard

You can come for as long as you need without paying any extra fees.You'll receive the same level of support.

Backed by concrete promises

We are 100% on your side. We guarantee every aspect of your trip with unrivalled promises.


Need to focus on a precise niche or two? No problem! Your programme can focus on your specialist areas.

Immersive cultural experience

We'll help you engage with the culture and personal benefits of being in a foreign country.

Virtual placements

Save on travel and accommodation costs, pay a far lower fee. All while building your professional network.

Academia friendly

We will handle all aspects of academic accreditation, including direct liaison with your tutors and academic staff.

Future career friendly

We will write full reference letters for your placement(s) to optimise future employers' first impression of you.


Current Human Rights Job Openings

Here are some current or recent internship job opportunities in this career area. We do not publish all openings - so please contact us to hear about others.

Client management and programme development assistant: Refugee rights

A strong interest in and some academic background in human rights, law and policy, politics or sociology Fluent in English with excellent communication skills Confident speaker Organised and independent worker

The Organisation: A non-profit organisation that works with refugees in Cape Town to help them gain access to employment, accommodation, healthcare and education.
Keywords: Human rights, Law, Public policy, Refugee rights, Client management, Internship
Programme Development Assistant: HIV/Aids Prevention & Community Empowerment

Excellent communication skills Previous research experience would be beneficial Confident speaking on the phone Creative thinker

The Organisation: An inspiring non-governmental organisation that creates and delivers empowerment and training programmes to help meet the Global Goal of eliminating HIV/AIDS by 2030 and UNAIDS targets pertaining to testing, treatment, and viral suppression.
Keywords: Human Rights, Programme development, Community development, Community empowerment, Public health, Internship

Get in touch.

Explore your custom Human Rights programme now

Click right here to get started

A straightforward process

We have worked very hard to streamline our process to make your experience easy, fun and highly rewarding personally and professionally. Flick through the steps below, or read about our process in more detail.

Introduce yourself to our friendly team

Getting your dream internship all starts with you saying hello! Just pop your details into our enquiry form and we'll reach out to schedule a conversation with you that we call a 'discovery call'.

Ask questions & learn how we can help

In your discovery call, you can ask us any questions you still have. We'll talk about your options in the career fields you've told us you're interested in to help you imagine your placement and decide if our service is right for you.

Complete your programme application

If everything sounds good to you, complete your application to put into words your dream programme. This forms the basis of the 'design' of your customised placement and will be the primary framework against which we validate potentially suitable opportunities.

We'll source you the best opportunities

We maintain a large and varied network of the best organisations in Cape Town. We will identify the best potential fits for your programme goals and preferences and reach out on your behalf to assess those organisations for suitability (learn about their current projects and initiatives).

Prepare and plan for your experience

Once you've confirmed which placement offer you prefer, we'll start helping you plan the rest of your trip. We'll book your accommodation, help with your travel arrangements and provide extensive advice and information on how to get ready for your time in Cape Town. Your Bridging Gaps mentor will be on hand to make sure you're fully prepared for your placement.

Maximise your experience & learning

Finally, every member of our team will move mountains to make sure you get what you came for and MORE! It's essential to us that you're safe, you're learning and growing in confidence and developing the most important skills for your future career.


Human Rights internship programme cost

Our programme fees are shown below, for a full description of our service offering please click to view the programme or a side-to-side comparison.


one-off, fixed

Bespoke programme

Backed by 4
concrete promises



one-off, fixed

Comprehensive support

Visa & travel assist

Accommodation assistance

Social events & excursions

... and lots more



one-off, fixed

Tailored Search

Ongoing support
& mentoring

Click to see detailed programme feature comparison.
Human Rights Internship Programmes FAQs

We've answered some specific questions about this internship programme below.

How do I start a career in international law and policy?

The first requirement for entering the international law field is to be certified as a lawyer through the BAR exam. You would typically need a masters of law (LLM) as well. 

How do I get a job in human rights?

Passion for your work is first and foremost an essential part of breaking into the human rights industry. Many roles will have a minimum requirement of a bachelor's degree in human rights, international relations, anthropology, history, social work or related disciplines. Having some work experience can be hugely beneficial when looking for jobs in this field.

What can I do with a degree in human rights?

A degree within the human rights sector could give you the opportunity to pursue a career in one of the following fields. A human rights lawyer and legal worker, monitoring and evaluation officer, corporate responsibility officer, policy specialist, human rights educator, embassy worker, ambassador, mediator or diplomat. 

What should I expect from a research internship?

Research internships often entail a lot of independent work, although asking questions, being proactive, and making the most of your resources are key to a successful research internship. Medical internships or those in the field of biology are often heavily focused on research and interns will either be asked to complete their own project or contribute to ongoing research. These types of internships will also involve laboratory work. Research is also often integral to internships in human rights, law and public policy.

What type of NGO or advocacy organisation could I work for?

We collaborate with a wide range of human rights organisations and NGO's here in Cape Town that focus on the promotion of women's rights, equal access to education, HIV/AIDS prevents and education, anti-trafficking, refugee rights, youth development, LGBT rights, improved healthcare, social justice and economic development.

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Human Rights Internship Programmes

Hi, we're really sorry but we are no longer offering internship opportunities in this career field. However, we wish you the best with your search.