Internships with ABColombia

At ABColombia we help interns develop a wide range of skills to prepare them for a future career in the field of human rights. Previous interns are now working with different (international) NGOs in the UK, Colombia and elsewhere. In this section you can find out more about our current and previous interns’ experience at ABColombia. If this sounds interesting to you, please do get in touch.

Current Interns

In process of Interviewing for new interns

Previous Interns

Shivani Dodhia (Intern in 2020)

Shivani graduated with a BA International Relations and Spanish degree from the University of Leeds in 2019; having spent a year studying in Argentina and traveling around South America, she developed a keen interest in Colombian politics and society. During this year in South America she was able to learn about current political climates and ongoing social and human rights issues first-hand and has now steered her onto a career path in human rights. Additionally, in her degree she explored extensively themes of violence and reconciliation in the Global South and the effects of transitional justice mechanisms on sexual and gender-based violence which she is hoping to apply and develop such knowledge in the internship at ABColombia.

Maria Jimena Lopez (Intern in 2020)

Maria is from Colombia, she holds a BA in Anthropology and a master’s degree in Political Studies, both at the National University of Colombia. She has worked over seven years building bridges between social research methods and the design, implementation, and evaluation of public policy in the public sector and with NGO’s, aimed to improve different rural communities’ livelihood in Colombia. She has also worked as a social researcher studying the construction of social order in societies affected by violence, especially, regarding images of violence, and collective action. Currently, she is studying a MSc in Comparative Politics at the London School of Economics where she is developing a research topic about the correlation between agrarian change, illicit crops, and social inequalities in Colombia.

Lucas Kantaris Díaz (Intern in 2020)

Lucas is currently undertaking an internship with ABColombia while studying for an MA in International Political Economy at King’s College London. He is half Colombian and is passionate about Colombian culture – having visited and travelled around Colombia many times. He has previously interned at the UK parliament and hopes to pursue a career working in international affairs. Lucas is particularly interested in the interaction between multinational corporations and politics and is excited to be working on projects related to mining and oil extraction. He is currently researching many of these aspects within a wider theoretical framework of neoliberal implementation in Colombia for his MA dissertation.

Saskia Hughes (Intern in 2019)

I have been able to research and work on very important and interesting issues during my time at ABColombia. It has also given me an invaluable insight into the professional environment of human rights advocacy. I have also had the chance to meet Colombian human rights defenders and journalists who do very challenging and inspiring work.”

Saskia completed an internship with ABColombia in 2019 whilst studying Latin American Studies at UCL part time. For her undergraduate degree she studied Illustration and is currently exploring ideas around the intersectionality between politics, performance art and protest in the Americas. During her internship she worked on a case study on the human rights impacts of a large scale extractive project in Colombia. She hopes to live in South America in the future and pursue a career that combines art with human rights.

Renan de Souza (Intern in 2019)

Working with ABColombia as a Research and Communications Intern was a deeply rewarding experience which enabled me to not only deal directly with human rights but also gain experience in policy-making, international politics, conflict, international development and peacebuilding. I am extremally grateful for this opportunity and for working on the launch of a report and in a meeting to update the British parliamentarians about the current political situation in Colombia. I am so proud of being part of the team. ABColombia gave me a lifetime professional experience.”

Renan is a journalist and international relations expert with over ten years of professional experience. He is fluent in Portuguese, English and Spanish. Before interning with ABColombia, Renan was the Head of International Desk at SBT, the second most important TV network in Brazil, where he produced several breaking news stories. In the United Kingdom, he studied an MA in International Relations at Goldsmiths, University of London. His dissertation was focused on international security.

Paula Aghon Torres (Intern in 2018)

Working with ABColombia as a Research & Communications intern has provided me with the perfect opportunity to combine my main interests during my studies in gender, human rights, and the Colombian conflict. Being able to help with the report on gender is definitely something I am extremely grateful and proud of, as it is exactly what I hoped to do when I started my studies, so it was literally a chance to put my studies and efforts into practice, and for a cause I am passionate about.”

Paula interned with ABColombia from May to November 2018. She completed her MSc in Gender, Development, and Globalisation at LSE, where she focused particularly on human rights in the Global South. Her dissertation research focused on the gender approach in the Colombian Peace Process and Final Peace Agreement, and previously during her BA in International Relations at King’s College London, her dissertation examined the prospects of peace in Colombia after the 2016 Peace Agreement. She has previously interned in the United Nations ECLAC in the Gender Issues Division, focusing on carework rights and women’s empowerment across Latin America, as well as in Socialyse Havas Media with the Social Media Team.

Helen Carter (Intern in 2018)

Working with ABColombia as a Research & Communications intern has been very rewarding. I have met a Colombian Human Rights defender visiting the UK, which was an incredible experience.  The internship offers me the opportunity to utilise my Spanish skills through research and expand my knowledge on Human Rights advocacy in the UK and Europe. I look forward to what I will continue to learn during my time here!

Helen interned with ABColombia from February to August 2018. She completed her BA in History with Spanish at UCL, where she focused on Latin American and Chilean cultural and social history of the 20th century. As part of her degree she undertook a research project in Santiago, Chile, interviewing local mural artists about alternative, artistic forms of political expression. She has previously volunteered for AIESEC in Mexico City, leading workshops in youth groups on environmental issues and multiculturalism. Prior to this, she volunteered in Honduras, working on issues such as gender equality, women’s empowerment and micro-enterprise. Helen currently works as a Development Officer for West London Zone.

Georgia Burke (Intern in 2017/18)

From day-one I was actively involved in the organisation of the conference ‘Colombia securing peace: women’s achievements and the challenges ahead’ and a closed seminar in Parliament. It was a hands-on internship, giving me the chance to gain insight into human rights advocacy at the UK and EU level, whilst further developing my own research skills. Working on human rights and humanitarian issues at a critical point of the Peace Process was extremely rewarding, and something that I hope defines the start of my career within the NGO sector.

Georgia interned with ABColombia from November 2017 to April 2018. Previously, she completed an MA in Latin American Studies at UCL, where her dissertation research focused on legal response to gender-based violence (GBV) committed against women in Mexico, which frames GBV as a fundamental violation of women’s human rights. Prior to this, during her Bachelor’s degree in Spanish at the University of Bristol, she was involved in a notable student-led platform which provided social, cultural and political insight into the Latin America region.

Jeremy Anselmo (Intern in 2017)

I am thrilled to be involved in human rights advocacy. Having the opportunity to work towards the protection of human rights defenders is, above all, a privilege and I look forward to being more and more involved in our team.

Jeremy was interning with ABColombia in 2017. He recently completed a Masters in International Relations of the Americas at UCL. He specialised on the Caribbean region and the Andean region. He previously interned with LatinNews, a news agency reporting on political and economic news about Latin America. He will be contributing to fundraising, event management and communications.

Emily Brown (Intern in 2017)

Working with ABColombia as a Research and Communications Intern provided me with a real insight into advocacy work and the daily running of an NGO. The role is varied and offers the opportunity to develop skills and gain experience in a range of areas such as writing reports, planning events and using social media.

Before staring an internship with ABColombia, Emily completed an LLM in Human Rights Law at Queen Mary University. As part of her undergraduate degree in Law and Spanish, she spent a year volunteering in El Salvador which developed her interest in human rights and international development in the Latin American region.

Maria Hoyos (Intern in 2016/17)

I decided to work with ABColombia because I am really passionate about working for peace and human rights in Colombia. I believe that my generation has the duty to change our future and to have the opportunity to learn from the work of an international agency with a remarkable experience in research and advocacy, gives me all the inspiration to continue on this path.

Maria interned with ABColombia in 2016/2017 while she was completing her Masters in Human Rights at London School of Economics and Political Science. At ABColombia, she provided important help towards our report on Human Rights Defenders, including organizing the launch of the report and the Special Rapporteurs’ visit to Colombia. Maria is now working with the Unit of Land Restitution for victims of dispossession and forced displacement in the office based in the Meta department (Colombia) as a Context Researcher.

Lorena Cuervo (Intern in 2014/15)

Being an intern with ABColombia was a wonderful experience. Having the opportunity to collaborate for such a fantastic cause and seeing the passion the team put into their work was inspiring. This internship helped me develop the skills and experience necessary to find a job in the third sector. I’m really grateful to have been given such an opportunity.

Lorena is a Colombian lawyer who interned with ABColombia for seven months in 2014. She is currently working for a London-based charity that helps women victims of domestic and sexual violence and volunteers at an organisation that supports Latin American women in the UK.

Anna Tyor (Intern with ABColombia in 2015)

I’ve really enjoyed working with ABColombia as the Research and Communications Intern. I have been able to strengthen my researching skills and utilise my Spanish through investigating resources for reports on mining and on civil society. I’ve also been able to further my understanding of the role of NGOs in the UK governmental decision-making process by directly communicating with members of Parliament and the diplomatic community on behalf of ABColombia.

Anna interned with ABColombia while completing her Masters in International Relations of the Americas at UCL. Alongside her research activities, Anna was responsible for updating and editing the website and representing the organisation through social media. After graduating, she went to the US and did an internship with Women’s World Banking as a micro-finance researcher. She is now the US Philanthropy Manager for Restless Development, a UK-based youth-led development agency.

Irina Muñoz (Intern in 2015)

The internship with ABColombia gave me an opportunity to gain insights into advocacy work on the national and European level. I met many amazing human rights defenders from the UK and Colombia whose commitment inspired me not to give up my idealism and continue working for more transparency and justice.

Irina studied International and European law and interned with ABColombia on a full-time basis as part of her gap year between her Bachelor and Master studies. During her internship, she focused on a case study about the environmental and human rights impacts of a large-scale extractive project in Northern Colombia. After this internship, she successfully obtained an LLM degree in European Law from the University of Edinburgh. After completing her Masters, Irina interned with a public health organisation in London. Between April 2017 and July 2019, she worked as Information and Advocacy Officer at ABColombia, before starting a PhD in law at the European University Institute in Florence.

Lucy Bye (Intern in 2015/16)

The internship with ABColombia enabled me to further develop my legal research and advocacy skills, and better understand the challenges faced by human rights defenders, in particular women and indigenous human rights defenders, in Colombia. Working on these issues, at a critical juncture in Colombia’s history, was a great experience.

Lucy interned with ABColombia for six months in 2015/16, whilst completing her Masters degree in Human Rights Law at SOAS. Her research focused on the human rights situation in Buenaventura, in the context of intensive development and the marginalisation of local communities. Lucy is now part of the Law and Policy Programme at ARTICLE 19, an international freedom of expression organisation headquartered in London, where she supports the organisation’s engagement with UN human rights mechanisms, addressing thematic issues such as Human Rights Defenders, protest, civil society space, and journalistic freedom.

Grace Acosta (Intern in 2012)

My internship at ABColombia helped me to identify what I wanted to do career-wise, and gave me a taste of what working for an NGO could be like. My favourite part of my time there was being able to meet and work with human rights defenders and indigenous leaders visiting from Colombia.

Grace interned with ABColombia for 5 months in 2012 after graduating with a degree in English Literature with Spanish. Soon after she moved to Colombia, interning for Corporación Nuevo Arcoiris in a project creating information and workshops for victims organisations persuing the victims’ and land restitution law. This year she started a Master’s degree in Social Work at the Universidad Nacional de Colombia in Bogotá.

Irene Massimino (Intern in 2011/12)

I had a wonderful experience at ABColombia I will certainly cherish for life. Thank you!

Irene is an Argentine lawyer who interned with ABColombia in 2011/2012. Since the internship she has been teaching at public universities and researching at Buenos Aires University. She is also a member of the International Association of Genocide Scholars. Last year her work was used by the Permanent People’s Tribunal in Mexico, for decisions condemning the Mexican State. Here is a link to an interview with Irene and Dr. Daniel Feierstein, current president of the IAGS (International Association of Genocide Scholars). Irene travels frequently for work and has become involved in Colombia on issues pertaining to Genocide.

Lauranne Botti (Intern in 2015)

Working at ABColombia as an Events and Communications Intern has opened many doors for the start of my career in the field of Human Rights and International Development. Researching Colombia’s current conflict situation and staying up to date with statistics on topics like human rights defenders has prepared me for my paid position in Geneva, Switzerland – the heart of NGOs and the United Nations.

Lauranne interned with ABColombia after completing her Masters degree in Human Rights. Having experience working for an NGO like ABColombia was the determining factor in being chosen by her employer, as she is now helping to create an Index that certifies institutions on the extent to which they are fair partners in health research and innovation collaborations around the world. The communications aspect of the internship was particularly useful for her current position.

Adam Lunn (Intern in 2013)

Interning at ABColombia gave me an excellent insight into working for an international NGO. The internship gives you really varied responsibilities and I got to do everything from lobbying MPs, researching and preparing reports and organising visits of Colombian Human Rights Defenders in the UK.

Adam interned at ABColombia in 2013 whilst studying for an MA in Latin American studies at UCL. After finishing at ABColombia Adam spent a year working at the NGO Peace Brigades International in Guatemala and now works as an Advocacy Officer for PBI UK in London.

Himali Dave (Intern in 2013/14)

Interning at ABColombia gave me the vital skills and experience I needed to enter the international development sector. I learnt a great deal about UK and EU advocacy, working with international partners, and organising high profile events; and the team were very supportive in ensuring I got the best out of the experience.

Himali interned with ABColombia for one year whilst completing a MSc in Latin American Politics at UCL, after which she went on to intern at other international NGOs (Womankind Worldwide and Conciliation Resources). She is currently working as a Partnerships and Programmes Officer at ChildHope, an international children’s charity supporting street children.