Asylum Access, a US-based international refugee rights organization, is seeking experienced legal professionals to serve as Volunteer Legal Advocates (VLAs) in its offices in Quito, Dar es Salaam and Bangkok.
Fluent professional English is essential. Professional-level Spanish is required for Asylum Access-Ecuador. For Asylum Access-Thailand, Thai, Tamil and Urdi are a plus. For Asylum Access-Tanzania, Swahili, French are a plus.
Asylum Access envisions a world where refugees are seen as people with rights, not just people with needs. Asylum Access believes that by empowering refugees to assert their human rights, we can support the creation of effective, lasting solutions for refugees around the world. Asylum Access achieves this partly through the work of national and international volunteers that join the VLA program.
VLA's have the opportunity to help make refugee rights a reality in Africa, Asia and Latin America. Our global VLA team is made of lawyers and highly-qualified law students who commit to spending at least 6 months in Asylum Access offices abroad. They provide direct legal advice and representation to refugees seeking asylum or other legal status. VLAs receive intensive training in international refugee law, and practice before local offices of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees or local refugee status adjudicators. Volunteers may also have the opportunity to engage in policy advocacy at a national or international level.
The ideal applicant will be a legal professional with substantive knowledge of international human rights and refugee law, including client counseling and advocacy. The candidate should be able to build relationships and adapt legal strategies to fit new and/or challenging circumstances. Client service experience and past work with vulnerable populations is a plus.
Please note that all Asylum Access VLA positions are unpaid; we are happy to work with successful applicants to arrange for funding or school credit where available. If selected, VLA's are responsible for obtaining their visa and work permit, if applicable.
Because of space limitations, VLA positions are awarded on a very competitive basis. Each year Asylum Access receives hundreds of applications coming from around the globe for a handful of VLA positions. It is best, therefore, for applicants to submit polished, complete applications as early as possible. We accept applications on a rolling basis. Only candidates selected for interviews will be contacted.