Student Fellowship in Human Rights - SERI

Applications for 2024 have now closed.


The Bonavero Institute Summer Fellowship at SERI, is an eight-week internship, tenable from early July to late September 2024.

About SERI

The Socio-Economic Rights Institute of South Africa (SERI) is a non-profit human rights organisation and public interest law centre based in Johannesburg, South Africa. We provide legal advice and representation, research services and advocacy support to our clients and partners.

We work with communities, social movements, individuals and other non-profit organisations in South Africa and beyond to develop and implement strategies to challenge inequality and realise socio-economic rights. SERI has been at the forefront of developing South Africa’s socio-economic rights jurisprudence, especially in the areas of housing and basic services. SERI’s work focuses on marginalised groups and people working in the informal economy, including domestic workers, informal traders, waste reclaimers and farm workers. SERI also represents the families of the 34 striking mineworkers killed by police in the Marikana massacre of 2012 and has done sustained work on public order policing and the policing of poor communities.

SERI's work is at the cutting edge of global practice in socio-economic rights. 

SERI’s conviction is that it is the people who are on the receiving end of poverty and inequality who are best placed to devise and implement strategies to challenge them.  We act to protect and expand the political space in which individuals and communities organise and press for social change.

The Bonavero SERI Fellowship

The Fellow will be placed in SERI’s litigation department. SERI has approximately 20 staff, with about 12 in the litigation department. The Fellow will assist with legal research and client consultations, and attend court hearings. SERI has approximately 100 active cases at any time and also receives daily walk-in consultations. SERI’s court cases are mainly in the High Court, with some in the Magistrates’ Courts. Every year, SERI is likely to have some appeal hearings in the Supreme Court of Appeal and Constitutional Court, too. 

The Fellow will work under the supervision of a SERI senior attorney and ultimately under the Director of Litigation. The Fellow will provide general assistance but also be assigned one focal case or project during their time, in consultation with them before the Fellowship begins and taking into account their interests. The work takes place mainly from SERI’s office in Braamfontein, Johannesburg, but may involve visits to client communities in Johannesburg and possibly in Cape Town and Durban (subject to the Fellow’s interest in such work). 

You can find out more about SERI’s team (including previous interns), partners, cases, research publications and advocacy work on the website

About the Bonavero Fellowship at SERI

The successful candidate will receive an award to assist with travel, accommodation, living, and other reasonable expenses associated with the internship. In determining the amount to be awarded, other sources of funding will be taken into account.

The candidate will also be expected to provide a full report on their work at the end of their internship.

Please refer to the overview page referring specifically to the application process and eligibility criteria.

This Fellowship is made possible by generous gifts from the AB Charitable Trust and Eric Lewis.



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