NEWW-Network of East-West Women
Legal Fellowhip Program



The objective of the NEWW Legal Fellowship Program is to strengthen the capacity of women lawyers at the beginning of their careers, and women's organizations throughout CEE/NIS, to advocate more effectively for women's human rights on the local, national, regional and international levels.

Launched in 1997, the Legal Fellowship Program has supported 20 Fellows from 12 countries throughout CEE/NIS. Generally, NEWW Fellows' work on issues such as domestic violence, trafficking of women, labor discrimination, and strengthening women's political participation in CEE/NIS. Click here to find out more about NEWW Fellows


NEWW Legal Fellows participate in a 2-week training practicum in Washington D.C., complete a four-month internship at a U.S.-based human rights organization, participate in a law school course on International Women's Human Rights, and implement a twelve month women's rights advocacy follow-on project in their home country. Through the Fellowship Program, participants develop expertise required to litigate women's rights cases, cultivate networks with professional women's rights attorneys, and develop projects and collaborative initiatives in the field of women's human rights.

Each Fellow is placed with a U.S.-based human rights organization specifically focused on women's rights advocacy. Fellowships offer an intensive training experience, introducing Fellows to a variety of human rights strategies and mechanisms, and allowing them to participate in research, policy analysis and/or legal challenges on a range of women's issues. Fellows work full-time on an unpaid basis, and complete their internship over a four month period, from September to December. Organizations that have hosted Fellows in the past include the International Human Rights Law Group, Human Rights Watch/Women's Rights Division, CRLP (Center for Reproductive Law and Policy), Minnesota Advocates for Human Rights, Battered Women's Justice Project, Equality Now, Parliamentarians for Global Action, the Women's Caucus for Gender Justice, ICRW (International Center for Research on Women), WEDO (Women's Environment and Development Organization), IWPR (Institute for Women's Policy Research), and WEAVE (Women Empowered Against Violence).

The U.S. portion of the Program is immediately followed by a twelve month follow-on project implemented by the Fellow and her NGO in her home country. With support and guidance from NEWW, Fellows develop their own project, write a grant proposal, and fundraise for their project while they are in the U.S. Beginning in January, Fellows implement and manage their project, over a twelve month period, kyoto protocol summary working in cooperation with NEWW and their home NGO.

NEWW Legal Fellows become part of a large network of members and women's rights activists throughout CEE/NIS, the U.S. and Western Europe and eastern europe map. Each spring, the annual Fellows' Alumnae Workshop gives all current and former Program participants an opportunity to present their work and share strategies, information and experience. These meetings, in conjunction with general member events and activities, facilitate joint projects and advocacy initiatives while opening a door to continued regional networking.



The Network of East-West Women (NEWW) is pleased to announce a call for applications for the 2003 Legal Fellowship Program on Reproductive Rights and Sexual Health. The Program offers young women lawyers from LATVIA, POLAND, SERBIA and SLOVAKIA an opportunity to strengthen their research, advocacy and litigation skills in the area of REPRODUCTIVE RIGHTS and SEXUAL HEALTH, develop networks with other women's rights attorneys, and design projects to advance women's rights and policy related to reproductive rights and sexual health in their home countries. Two Fellows will be selected for this session.

2003 marks the seventh session of the Legal Fellowship Program, and the 2003 Program is funded by the Public Health Program of the Open Society Institute. Selected Fellows will join an alumnae network of 24 Fellows working to advance women's rights throughout Central, Eastern and Southeastern Europe, the Newly Independent States and the Russia Federation (CEE/NIS).


PROGRAM DATES:    U.S. Placement
August 25 - December 22, 2003

In-Country Follow-On Projects
January 1 - December 31, 2004

DURATION:    16 Months

Applications will be accepted from women lawyers from Latvia, Poland, Serbia and Slovakia who have completed their law studies within the past five years. Applications showing graduation prior to 1998 will not be considered. Candidates must: 1) have experience and a demonstrated commitment to women's human rights advocacy; 2) be affiliated with an established women's NGO that will support the candidate's follow-on project if selected for the Program; and 3) be fluent in written and spoken English. Candidates with specific experience in reproductive rights and sexual health are particularly encouraged to apply.

The goal of the NEWW Legal Fellowship Program is to build the capacity of women lawyers at the beginning of their careers, and women's organizations throughout CEE/NIS to advocate more effectively for women's human rights. Supported by grants from the Open Society Institute, the Ford Foundation, the Alfred Jurzykowski Foundation and NEWW's Board of Directors, the Legal Fellowship Program bridges the gap between theory and practice by providing an intensive training experience in law, public policy and feminist activism.

During the U.S. placement period, Fellows participate in a one week orientation in Washington D.C., complete a four-month internship at a U.S.-based human rights organization and participate in a law school course on International Women's Human Rights. Every effort is made to match each Fellow with an organization that is conducting work related to the Fellow's specific interest area. In December 2003, Fellows return to their home countries to complete a one-year follow-on project. Each Fellow designs and raises funds for her project while in the U.S. with support from NEWW and her host organization.

Fellowships includes travel to and from the placement site in the United States, short-term medical insurance, use of a laptop computer and a monthly stipend to cover room and board expenses during the U.S. portion of the program. Housing is arranged in an international student house or similar student accommodation. In some cases Fellows are placed with families in their host city. Upon successful completion of the U.S. portion of the Program, NEWW provides each Fellow with a $3,000 seed grant to begin implementation of her follow-on project.

Please note that NEWW guarantees financial support for the Fellows only during their time in the U.S. NEWW makes every effort to assist the Fellows and their NGOs in CEE/NIS to raise the funds needed to implement the follow-on project, but NEWW cannot guarantee support during the follow-on period beyond the $3,000 seed grant provided as part of the Fellowship.

There is no formal application form for this Program. Follow the directions below for submitting the required documents.

Application materials should be submitted electronically as ONE attachment. Do not send each document as a separate attachment as NEWW cannot guarantee that all of your documents will be reviewed by the Selection Committee.

Completed applications should be sent by email to NEWW at [email protected]. If email is not possible, please send the complete application packet by regular mail to the address below. Applications sent by mail must be RECEVIED in NEWW's office by the application deadline of May 15, 2003. Applications received after May 15 will not be considered.

Following review by the International Selection Committee, a maximum of 10 finalists will be selected for personal interviews to take place in Poland in June 2003. Selected finalists will be notified of their interview on or around May 30, 2003. Notification of Fellowship awards will be made by July 1, 2003.

Applicants should submit the following materials in English:

  • Cover letter and curriculum vitae.
  • Personal statement that: 1) summarizes the applicant's interest and involvement in the field of women's rights, and in particular reproductive rights and sexual health if applicable, and details her work with local women's organizations; 2) describes her reasons for applying to the Legal Fellowship Program and her expectations about this experience; and 3) outlines her goals and future career plans.
  • Two letters of recommendation in English, or accompanied by English translations, including all current contact information for the letter's author. All written recommendations will be verified by local NEWW contacts or via telephone by NEWW staff.
  • Signed declaration stating that if the applicant is selected for the Program, she will return to her home country to complete a 12-month follow-on project immediately following the U.S. placement period. Signed declarations can either be scanned and emailed, faxed or sent by regular mail by the application deadline.
  • 3-5 page country briefing paper about the status of women in the applicant's country, including recommendations for advocacy and legal reform. The paper may focus on one or more issues of current relevance in the applicant's country, and should demonstrate the applicant's ability to write and formulate arguments in English.

Julie Garuccio
Program Associate
Network of East-West Women
Email: [email protected]
1761 S Street NW, Suite LL-12
Washington, DC 20009
Tel (202) 299-9001
Fax (202) 299-9003

[email protected] | 1761 S Street NW, Suite LL-12, Washington, DC 20009 | tel: +1 (202) 299-9001 | fax: +1 (202) 299-9003