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Call for Applications: Legal Intern

13 February 2012 at 2:27 pm

The Centre for Environmental Rights, in collaboration with WWF-SA, calls for applications by suitably qualified and experienced candidates to take up a one-year legal internship contract with the Centre, starting on 1 March 2012. This internship is funded by WWF-SA, but based at the Centre for Environmental Rights where legal interns work closely with the attorneys, and play an integral role, in the Centre’s work and operations.

Qualifications, skills and experience:

  • An LLB or equivalent tertiary qualification
  • Candidates must be currently enrolled or have completed an LLM in Environmental Law
  • A sound understanding of legal and procedural requirements for environmental decision-making and legal challenges
  • A good knowledge of recent environmental case law and recent legal developments
  • An ability to work independently, without constant supervision, and to take initiative
  • An ability to work effectively and creatively with limited resources
  • Excellent writing and legal drafting skills
  • Work experience in a legal practice or not for profit organisation, as well as experience working with communities and community organisations will be an advantage
  • A sensitivity to social issues and needs
  • A commitment to high quality client service

Key responsibilities:

The legal intern will:

  • support the Executive Director and staff attorneys in the legal and administrative operations at the Centre;
  • conduct legal research and drafting legal opinions;
  • do site visits and investigations;
  • report non-compliance to authorities and track enforcement action;
  • assist the CER in preparing court applications and court actions;
  • populate and maintain the CER’s website, particularly its Virtual Environmental Law Library; and
  • negotiate a programme of work that is designed to meet priority skills training and experiential learning and undertake this work diligently and responsibly;
  • prepare progress reports for approval by the programme manager at WWF-SA, highlighting goals achieved, learning achieved and identifying areas for further growth and development;
  • participate in any support activities in the Graduate Placement Programme arranged under the auspices of the WWF-SA Environmental Leaders Programme.

Commencement date, working hours and duration: The contract with the legal intern will commence on 1 March 2012 on a full-time basis.

Closing dates and interviews: Applications should reach us by no later than 20 February 2012. Interviews will take place on 23 and 24 February 2012.

Applications: To apply, please send a cover letter motivating why you have the necessary passion, qualifications, skills and experience for this position, as well as a short CV including the contact details of at least two referees, to [email protected].

The Centre for Environmental Rights strives to reflect South Africa’s racial, cultural and gender diversity within its staff complement. All suitably qualified candidates are encouraged to apply.

Comments by past CER interns:

  • It was an immense privilege to have the opportunity to volunteer at the Centre. The kinds of matters that are being challenged by the Centre, the talent and passion with which they are pursued, and the creativity and commitment of its leaders has been both encouraging and exciting. I am grateful to have played a small part in this work and have gained immensely through the legal insight and practical training I received there.” Olivia Rumble, volunteer legal intern in 2010
  • The CER has provided me with an opportunity to expand my skills base. I have thoroughly enjoyed the chance to work with excellent professionals and learn as much as I can.” Junaid Francis, environmental management intern and project officer in 2011
  • Working at the CER was an incredible learning experience. Gaining practical experience in matters related to my university course work completely enriched my university learning. The CER is an immensely important organisation that is fulfilling a crucial role in civil society. I feel very privileged to have been a part of the CER and I will continue to follow their work and experiences with a keen interest.” Christine Reddell, legal intern in 2011