Is Law in Ghana the right internship for me?
Would you like to gain legal work experience in a developing country? Are you passionate about helping people in need? Then our Law Internship in Ghana is perfect for you.
You’ll learn from experienced lawyers, and work alongside paralegals and legal clerks. You can use this experience to boost your CV, and it will give you interesting points to talk about in interviews and applications.
You don’t need previous experience to join this project. We’ll assign work to you based on your skill and experience. Large volumes of work and complex cases are only assigned to interns with relevant skills and experience. The work assigned to you is also dependent on which cases we take on while you’re in Ghana.
This programme runs year-round, with a short two week break over Christmas and New Year. You can join at any other time for a minimum of four weeks. We recommend staying longer to learn more and work on a larger number of cases. You’ll also return home with more law work experience from your time in Ghana.
Your work will focus on these areas:
During your Law internship in Ghana, you may encounter any number of administrative legal tasks similar to those found in a law firm in your own country.
These may include:
- Registering new applicants
- Conducting interviews
- Attending court
- Drafting legal documents.
Through this work, you will also get an insight into the legal and human rights challenges people face everyday in Ghana. One day, you may help out with a child maintenance case and the next with a probate landlord.
Observe local legal professionals at work
When you aren’t busy with administrative tasks, you will be able to attend court and observe live cases. This is a great opportunity to see Ghana’s legal system in action. Since you will be accompanying resident lawyers from the firm/organisation you’ll be working at, you may be expected to take notes. These could be used to refer back to at a later stage, so be thorough!
Interact with clients
The local lawyers you work with may ask you to help with various client meetings. This could include preparing them with information for their upcoming case, or interviewing them about their side of the story.
The types of cases dealt with vary depending on your placement, but often include:
- Constitutional matters
- Probate (wills and inheritance)
- Family, custody, child maintenance, and matrimonial disputes
- Personal injury/negligence
Assisting with the Human Rights Project
In addition to your full time law placement in Ghana, you could assist our interns in the Human Rights Project. Your legal knowledge and experience will no doubt enhance these projects.
This can include conducting in-house seminars, assisting with office research, or attending one of our advocacy and outreach sessions. You may also assist in training and mediation in more community-based dispute resolution settings.
The availability of this work will depend on our current Human Rights Project, as well as your experience, interests, and personal schedule.
Where you will be working as a Law intern in Ghana
You will be based in the city of Accra. Here, you will work at a legal aid centre or a local law firm.
With a population of 2.7 million people, Accra is the largest city in Ghana and also the country’s capital. There is plenty to see and do in your free time and over weekends. We encourage you to make the most of your time in Ghana, and explore with with other Projects Abroad interns and volunteers.
A typical day as a Law intern in Ghana
As a Law intern in Ghana, your typical working hours will be 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday.
You will normally start your mornings in the office at your placement. The first hour or two of the day will be dedicated to helping with legal administration. This may include drafting legal documents and affidavits, and conducting legal research.
By late morning, you may either accompany one of the local lawyers to court or interact with clients. The latter may include registering new cases, conducting interviews, or preparing clients for their cases.
You will get an hour and a half break over lunch time. If your host family lives close by, you could head home to eat and have a short rest. Alternatively, you will be able to enjoy a packed lunch.
Afternoons are normally divided between going to court and continuing with administrative tasks. If you had been to court earlier, you may be expected to prepare some notes for a discussion. If you’ve been working with clients, you would be able to complete filing their most recent case information.
Evenings and weekends are your free time to explore, rest, and relax. Accra has a lively atmosphere and some fabulous restaurants. You can use weekends to adventure slightly further afield. Head out on a hiking trail in the mountains, take a trip to the beach, or visit a nature reserve.
What are the aims and impacts of the Law Internship in Ghana?
The aim of this project is to expand your knowledge about law and give you insight into the judicial system of a developing country.
You will work alongside local lawyers, paralegals and clerks in a professional environment, and learn from them. This will add valuable practical experience to your CV, which will help you with your career or postgraduate studies.
This project also has an altruistic goal. In Ghana, getting legal help can be a lengthy and expensive process. This makes it difficult for disadvantaged people to settle disputes and fight for their rights in courts. As a legal intern working at a placement like the Ghana Legal Aid Scheme, you can help these people take their cases further.
You can also support the work we do at the Projects Abroad Human Rights Office in Accra. Here, we deal with a range of issues, from domestic violence to child labour.
Join us as a Law intern in Ghana and kickstart your legal career in a different country.
Volunteering for professionals
This project is also perfect for qualified professionals. With your skills backing up our ongoing efforts, we can make an even bigger difference together. We'll match you to the placement where your skills are needed most.
This means you can share your training and and knowledge with others. You can work hand-in-hand with our partner organisations and local communities to support sustainable development.
If you have relevant skills or qualifications, read more about how you can make use of them with Projects Abroad.
Measuring our impact
Our projects work towards clear long-term goals, with specific annual objectives. Every volunteer and intern we send to these projects helps us work towards these goals, no matter how long they spend on our projects.
Every year we take a step back and look at how much progress we've made towards these goals. We put together a Global Impact Report, which documents our achievements. Find out more about the impact our global community of volunteers, interns and staff make, and read the latest report.
Leisure activities and free time
Volunteering in Ghana is an ideal way to explore this colourful West African country. There’s a huge variety of different activities to do while you’re there, giving you plenty of exciting ways to spend your free time.
Music is a central part of Ghanaian culture. In the bigger towns, especially Accra, you will hear some great live bands and have some memorable nights out. Evenings spent at buzzing restaurants will also give you a taste of some of the delicious local cuisine.
For a look into Ghana’s history, you can tour the slave forts of Cape Coast and visit museums. Nature lovers will relish trekking through the rainforests of Kakum National Park or Mole National Park.
We run a wide range of projects in Ghana so there’s sure to be other volunteers there during your trip. This means you can explore the country solo or connect with other volunteers and travel as a group.
Safety and staff support
Your safety and security is our prime concern. We have many procedures and systems to ensure you have the support you need to enjoy your trip with peace of mind. Our Projects Abroad staff are available 24 hours a day to help, and will be on-hand to make sure you settle in well at your accommodation and placement. If you encounter any problems, they will be available to help at any time.
Find out more about safety and backup.
Meet the team in Ghana
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