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Refugee Rights Clinic

Cape Town

The Refugee Rights Clinic is a fully independent Unit within the University of Cape Town's Law Clinic. The Clinic provides direct legal services to thousands of refugees and asylum seekers in the Western Cape, conducts applied research in refugee law and related topics, teaches refugee law to undergraduate law and masters' students within the Department of Public Law, and undertakes a significant amount of targeted advocacy and training of government officials, the judiciary, civil society partners, and refugee communities.

The extern will be exposed to many aspects of refugee law in South Africa, including resettlement, asylum, and voluntary repatriation cases. The work is very "hands on" and involves significant client interaction and possible court appearances.

Externs conduct client consultation, sometimes connected with xenophobic violence, and have also conducted consultations at refugee camps.

Applicants should have taken the basic Refugee Law class.

Specific Required Skill
In addition to the skills utilized at all South Africa placements, this site specifically requires a student to be proficient in:

  • Case assessment and intake.
  • Interviewing.
  • Factual investigation.
  • Recognizing and resolving ethical dilemmas.
  • Trial advocacy.
  • Appellate litigation.

For more information about the Refugee Rights Unit, please visit their website.