Legal Fellow - Equality Now

Legal Fellow

The primary role of the Legal Fellows shall be conducting specialised legal research and analysis, as well as drafting legal memos and opinions on women’s and girls’ rights.


Equality Now is an international human rights organization working towards creating a society that is equal and just for women and girls all over the world. Equality Now’s work focuses on addressing systemic, multiple and intersecting forms of discrimination and inequalities that continue to plague women and girls, especially those from vulnerable and marginalized backgrounds. Equality Now strives to hold governments responsible for ending legal inequality, sex trafficking, sexual violence and harmful practices, such as female genital mutilation (FGM) and "child marriage". Equality Now works at the international, regional and national levels, with offices in New York, London, Beirut and Nairobi.


In Africa, efforts have and continue to be made towards ensuring that the rights and protections enshrined in regional and international human rights treaties are accessible to all women and girls. For instance, many African countries are states parties to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW), and the Protocol to the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights on the Rights of Women in Africa (“the Maputo Protocol”). These human rights instruments emphasise the rights of women and girls that are more generally provided for under the so-called International Bill of Rights (incorporating among others, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and its Optional Protocols, and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights); the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights (“the Banjul Charter”); the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child; and the Convention of the Rights of the Child. In this regard, Equality Now will support an Externship Programme established last year in partnership with the Judiciary of the Republic of Kenya in a bid to amplify capacity building efforts targeted at young legal practitioners committed to women’s and girls’ rights, as well as providing crucial technical assistance to judicial actors responsible for contributing to the development of progressive jurisprudence on gender justice, the realization and protection of the rights of women and girls and the advancement of regional and international treaties and conventions on the rights of women and girls, including the Maputo Protocol. The Externship Programme will continue to support existing Legal Fellow at the Constitutional Court and will place another talented Legal Fellow with Judges of the Family Division of the High Court of Kenya for a period of ten (10) months from November 2020.


The primary role of the Legal Fellows shall be conducting specialised legal research and analysis, as well as drafting legal memos and opinions on women’s and girls’ rights, as assigned by the Judges to whom they are attached. This research and analysis will assist Judges in utilising the Maputo Protocol and other international human rights instruments in their rulings and judgements.

Specifically, the Legal Fellow will:

  • Assist Judges in identifying new areas of research and intervention on legal issues affecting women and girls in Kenya.
  • Assist Judges in drafting of judgments and rulings as directed.
  • Work closely with Judges to identify other opportunities for Equality Now to provide technical support to and engage with the Judiciary to create awareness on and enhance implementation of the Maputo Protocol in domestic courts.
  • Perform any other related duties as assigned by judges and/or Equality Now.


Professionalism: Uphold high standards of confidentiality, competence, integrity and credibility; ability to prioritise work and be well organized in execution and presentation of tasks; maintain good quality of work and consistency in this regard; exemplify a high degree of accountability for actions taken and not taken; work with minimum supervision; show commitment to the role of Legal Fellow and willingness to do more than what is expected; be courteous and willing to learn at every opportunity presented; seek clarity when unsure about instructions given; ability to remain motivated.

Research, Analysis and Writing: Knowledge and understanding of international human rights law, especially as it relates to women and girls; a firm knowledge of the content and application of international and regional human rights instruments on the rights of women and girls is highly desirable; ability to conduct high-quality legal research and apply efficient research strategies; ability to analyse and evaluate large amounts of information and draw justified legal conclusions necessary to resolve the legal problems at hand; excellent writing and referencing skills.

Communication: Fluency in spoken and written English; clarity in written and oral presentations; exercise active listening; demonstration of openness in sharing information; communicating effectively and in a timely manner when necessary, for example when experiencing challenges in meeting deadlines.

Interpersonal skills: Ability to work in a team and collaborate with other colleagues for execution of specific tasks; ability to resolve conflict; ability to take up leadership roles when required to do so.

Commitment: Availability to commit to the role for a period of one year from November 2020 and to commit minimal amounts of time afterwards for follow-up communication with Equality Now on matters related to the Externship Programme. Availability for work related travel when necessary.


  • Minimum Bachelor of Law degree (LLB.) and a Post-Graduate Diploma in Law from recognised institutions.
  • Minimum of two (2) years’ post-admission practicing experience in government, eligible law firm or organisation working on human rights.
  • A demonstrable strong grasp of the Kenyan legal system.
  • Proven track record of knowledge and commitment – exhibited by coursework, writing, or work experience – to the rights of women and girls in Africa, constitutional law and human rights protections.
  • Excellent organisational skills and ability to manage concurrent deadlines.
  • Excellent writing, research, and analytical skills.
  • Strong communications and interpersonal skills.
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office Suite and strong technological literacy.
  • Ability to work independently and take initiative.
  • Previous interaction with Equality Now’s internship programme or participation in past capacity building training exercises or moot courts is desirable, but not a requirement.


Successful applicants for this position will receive a monthly stipend to cover transport, meals and other related professional expenses. Successful applicants will also receive a laptop computer for professional use that will be returned to Equality Now at the end of the Externship Programme.


Interested and qualified candidates should email their applications – under the heading “Legal Fellow, Judiciary of Kenya” – to, by 27 October 2020 at 11:59 PM Nairobi time.

All applicants should send the following documents as part of their application:

  1. Application letter (one page), stating your motivation and suitability for the position;
  2. CV (two pages), including the names and contact information for three referees; and,
  3. Writing sample (maximum of three pages) of original writing on a topic related to international and regional human rights standards on the rights of women and girls in Africa.

Incomplete applications will not be considered. Shortlisted candidates will be required to be available for interviews in the first week of November 2020. The successful candidate will be required to attend an induction training in person in Nairobi in early November 2020 prior to the start of the Externship Programme by mid-November 2020.

Please note that only shortlisted applicants will be contacted.


Equality Now employees are selected on the basis of ability without regard to race, colour, religion, sex, language, political or other opinion, nationality, ethnic or social origin, disability, pregnancy, mental status, HIV status, age, marital status, or sexual orientation. Candidates must have authorization to work in Kenya.