European Advocacy Officer

Human Rights House Foundation
  • Location
    Geneva or Brussels, Belgium
  • Sector
    Non Profit
  • Experience
    Early Career / Mid Career
  • Apply by
  • Posted
    Mar 06

Position description

Human Rights House Foundation (HRHF) is looking for a resourceful and qualified candidate to support its advocacy towards the European Union and Council of Europe, in close cooperation with Human Rights Houses/partners in the network of Human Rights Houses.

Duration: Permanent with a 6-month probation period
Reporting to: Advocacy Manager (based in Geneva)
Occupation: 100%
Start: As soon as possible
Location: Brussels (Belgium) or Geneva (Switzerland) depending on applicants
Travel: Regular travelling is required, especially to Geneva/Brussels, Oslo, Strasbourg, Eastern Europe, Caucasus, and Balkans.
Remuneration: HRHF offers competitive salary and benefits according to the laws applied at the location, and compensation for travelling abroad.

About the position

The European Advocacy Officer position includes a wide range of tasks, including but not limited to:

  • Conduct background research and assist with the collection of relevant information on European Union (EU) mechanisms, including the Council, the European Parliament, the European External Action Service, and other relevant mechanisms, especially in regard with economic cooperation between the European Union and Eastern European countries:
    • Participate in developing HRHF’s efforts in advocacy towards the EU, including by formalising its status towards EU agencies;
    • Ensure sharing of knowledge within HRHF staff of EU mechanisms;
    • Coordinate activities in relation to hearings and advocacy missions to the European Parliament, as well as advocacy events in Brussels especially.
  • Assist in developing advocacy strategies towards the EU for specific countries;
  • Develop and maintain a mapping of MEPs and other strategic stakeholders;
  • Conduct background research and assist with the collection of relevant information on Council of Europe (CoE) mechanisms, including the Committee of Ministers, the Parliamentary Assembly (PACE), the Venice Commission, the Commission for the Prevention of Torture, the Secretary General and the Commissioner for Human Rights, as well as the Conference of International Non-Governmental Organisations:
    • Coordinate activities in regard to advocacy at the PACE, and further participate in developing follow-up activities;
    • Provide logistical support in the organisation of workshops and meetings in Strasbourg, as well as advocacy visits to Strasbourg;
    • Follow specifically work on HRHF projects related to the CoE and development of activities in Strasbourg;
    • Assist in developing advocacy strategies towards the CoE for issues and specific countries.
  • Develop and maintain a mapping of MPs and other strategic stakeholders within the CoE system;
  • Provide technical and logistical support for events organised in Brussels and Strasbourg;
  • Contribute to capacity building of HRHF staff and HRHs;
  • Contribute to HRHF’s communication work on relevant advocacy initiatives and results;
  • You are part of HRHF’s team and we expect interest and engagement in all HRHF activities, as well as participation in relevant staff meetings/seminars and network meetings.

Human Rights House Foundation (HRHF) is an international organisation which protects, empowers and supports human rights defenders and their organisations. To accomplish this, HRHF brings organisations together in Human Rights Houses and unites the Houses in an international network.

HRHF advocates with partner organisations to promote the freedoms of assembly, association, and expression, and the right to be a human rights defender at home and abroad, utilising its consultative status at the United Nations and participatory status at the Council of Europe.

Today, independent human rights organisations work together in 16 Human Rights Houses in 11 countries. The Houses are located in Eastern & Western Europe, the Caucasus, and the Balkans.

HRHF has 15 staff and is based in Oslo, with an office in Geneva and representation in Brussels and Tbilisi.


Successful candidate is expected to be an active NGO person, have a mature and flexible attitude, display good time-management skills, and be able to undertake work independently. She/he is furthermore expected to be good in organising events, have an expertise of the European Union and Council of Europe mechanisms and policies, and an understanding of other international human rights bodies. Excellent interpersonal skills are required, as well as eagerness to support, learn and network.

Besides genuine interest in and knowledge of fundamental human rights and of international human rights mechanisms, candidates should in addition have:

  • Relevant academic background (preferably a degree in international law, international relations, political sciences);
  • Proven experience to multitask, work under limited supervision and take initiative under tight deadlines;
  • Proven experience in working in civil society organisations, to facilitate and coordinate projects, and fundraising;
  • Proven experience working with the EU and CoE mechanisms, tools and policies, and the work of NGOs towards the institutions;
  • Excellent command of oral and written English (knowledge of Russian/French is an asset), and strong writing skills – ability to draft articles on human rights issues;
  • Capacity to see the big picture, have a keen attention to detail, and be hands-on, like to work in a team and good in internal communications, and strong interpersonal skills.

Application instructions

Applications will be considered on a rolling basis. Application is to be submitted by email with the following documentation to Director Maria Dahle, within 18 March 2019:

  • Cover Letter (about 1 page);
  • Curriculum Vitae (2 pages maximum);
  • Names and contact details for minimum 2 references.

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