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Human Rights Internship in Bolivia

  • Placement location: Cochabamba
  • Role: To work within professional organizations addressing the issues of abuse and violence directed against women and human trafficking
  • Types of Placements: Center for abused women and center for human trafficking
  • Requirements: Volunteers must speak an intermediate level of Spanish
  • Accommodation: Host family
  • Length of placement: From 2 weeks
  • Start dates: Flexible

Volunteers in Bolivia work on a public awareness campaign to foster human rights

Join our Human Rights Project in Bolivia to make a positive impact in the lives of abused women and women who have been forced into prostitution. By taking part in this internship you will help empower women who have little hope of becoming independent, respected, and self-sufficient members of society. You will be able to offer support in the form of care and useful advice

There are two placements that you will be able to work at on this Human Rights placement. At each, the women and girls who attend have very different stories, and the centers allows them to voice their stories in a safe environment. Some women arrive with stories of physical abuse in their homes, while others have been psychologically abused by their husbands, boyfriends or partners. In other instances, girls and women were trapped in a human trafficking network.

Each centre holds regular workshops that promote life skills and provide the women the information they need to escape the abusive situation they are in.

Volunteering at a Women’s centre in Bolivia

The main placement on the Human Rights Project in Bolivia is a government-run center for abused women. Here, you will work directly with staff and the women who attend the center. The number of women at the center may vary, but the number you will be in contact with at a time will be between 25-30 women.

Did you know? It was not until 2013 that a law set forth comprehensive measures to prevent and prosecute violence against women. The law created the crime of “femicide” and called for the establishment of shelters for women, as well as special prosecutors and courts for gender-based crimes.

At the center for abused women, your work will involve helping staff assess situations to decide on an action plan. In your daily work activities you can be involved with the following work activities:

  • Help women prepare administrative documents
  • Assist women with applying for their IDs if necessary
  • Organize and run workshops focused on building skills and confidence levels
  • Accompany staff on school visits to promote awareness around violence against women
  • Work alongside and observe psychologists and social workers in the center
  • Help staff, as part of a monthly outreach, to prepare food for youngsters living on the street
  • Play sports with the women

The center also runs a variety of activities designed to teach valuable practical skills. You will take part in sessions that focus on creating and selling crafts made by the women. This will allow them to use their new skills to earn an income once they leave the center.

Volunteering at an anti-Human Trafficking centre in Bolivia

The other placement on this projects is an anti-human trafficking center. Here, you will focus on helping girls or women who have been forced into prostitution, and work closely with local staff on their cases. You have to be 18 years and older to work at this center, as the stories shared are of a sensitive nature and require maturity.

During your placement, you can take part in the following work activities:

  • Shadow social workers and psychologists at the center
  • Research and prepare material for workshops aimed at boosting confidence and self-esteem
  • Assist staff with workshop presentations
  • Playing sports with the girls and women

Volunteering on the Human Rights Project in Bolivia

To make the most of this Human Rights Project, it is important that you are flexible, enthusiastic, communicate well and are willing to learn. An intermediate understanding of Spanish is required, for you to be able to communicate effectively with the staff, women and girls at the placements. If you are interested in taking Spanish lessons in Bolivia before starting your project, please read about our Language Courses.

Fully qualified social workers and psychologists are welcome to join the project. Please contact us for more information.

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