Senior Human Rights Specialist


About the organization

Freedom House is founded on the core conviction that freedom flourishes in democratic nations where governments are accountable to their people.; the rule of law prevails; and freedoms of expression, association, and belief, as well as respect for the rights of women, minorities and historically marginalized groups, are guaranteed.

We speak out against the main threats to democracy and empower citizens to exercise their fundamental rights through a unique combination of analysis, advocacy, and direct support to frontline defenders of freedom, especially those working in closed authoritarian societies. Founded in 1941, Freedom House was the first American organization to champion the advancement of freedom globally. Working as an independent watchdog organization dedicated to the expansion of freedom and democracy around the world, Freedom House is notable for its bipartisan character.


Freedom House seeks a Senior Human Rights Specialist for the Burkina Faso Human Rights and Access to Justice Program, a three-year project in Burkina Faso funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development. The project aims to build the capacity of civil society and human rights institutions to respond to the urgent human rights threats faced by Burkina Faso as a result of the breakdown of the rule of law caused by violent extremism and violations committed by multiple actors.

The Senior Human Rights Specialist provides technical support for Freedom House’s programming, which focuses on human rights documentation, advocacy and civil society strengthening. The Senior Human Rights Specialist’s duties will include, but not be limited to, leading trainings, providing technical assistance for stakeholder mapping, risk assessments, contextual analysis, and providing mentorship on human rights documentation and advocacy to project partners. The Senior Human Rights Specialist will also work with Freedom House headquarters and Ouagadougou office colleagues to support strategic planning, program design, monitoring and evaluation and administration. The position is based in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso and reports to the Freedom House Burkina Faso Project Manager.

Duties and Responsibilities

Serve as technical lead for Freedom House on civil society capacity building in human rights documentation and advocacy.


Bachelor's degree; Master’s degree in human rights, political science, law or other social sciences preferred.
A minimum of 5 years of experience in human rights work
Prior experience working in human rights documentation; demonstrated technical experience conducting assessments and human rights analysis.
Demonstrated experience leading trainings, workshops, or capacity building activities.
Experience with civil society engagement and human rights advocacy in Burkina Faso.
Significant knowledge of human rights, civil society and rule of law issues in Burkina Faso.
Strong interpersonal skills, demonstrated ability to create and maintain effective working relationships with local partners, government officials, media houses, as well as in-country and foreign experts.
Strong knowledge of human rights principles and mechanisms.
Experience conducting trainings, assessments and analysis related to human rights.
Experience in developing activity work plans, budgets, implementing programmatic activities, managing small grants and financial processes preferred.
Strong ability to communicate effectively in French, both orally and in writing. Ability to communicate effectively in English strongly preferred.
Knowledge of, and ability to use MS Office Suite; particularly Word, Outlook, PowerPoint; and Excel.
Attributes and Characteristics:

Eagerness to learn and willingness to embrace change and adapt in the challenging country context.

Application instructions

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