With the help of the Bertha Foundation ECCHR has the capacity to offer two-year fellowships to particularly qualified candidates from our alumn* and volunteers. Bertha Justice Fellows form an integral part of our team. They are distinguished not only by their professional competence but also by their political insight and radical approach to legal work.
Bertha Justice Fellows are part of a global network comprised of more than 200 participants from more than 17 countries. They all work with organizations whose goal is to enforce human rights by legal means.
The Bertha Justice Fellowship Program is training the next generation of human rights and movement lawyers in pursuit of social justice and human rights for all. Funded by the Bertha Foundation, which fights for a more just world by supporting activists, storytellers, and lawyers, the Program provides two-year fellowships to emerging lawyers at the best public interest law centers around the world.
During the Fellowship, Fellows gain practical experience working alongside renowned professionals and build connections with a global network of like-minded Fellows and senior lawyers for solidarity and mentorship. Fellows get exposure to movement lawyering, in which lawyers are deeply connected with social movements and work collaboratively with activists to define legal strategies, and to the use of media as a tool to advance legal advocacy campaigns.
In the next ten years, the Bertha Justice Fellowship Program aims to train 1,000 lawyers, who are motivated to work alongside storytellers and activists to hold states and corporations to account.
In the last years, those lawyers have joined ECCHR as Bertha Justice Fellows:
Antonia Klein studied law and philosophy in Tübingen, Germany, and Aix-en-Provence, France, with a focus on international law and human rights. In 2017, she was licensed as a lawyer in Berlin. Previously, she gained experience in strategic litigation in environmental law at the law firm Geulen & Klinger, and asylum and residency law at the human rights NGO JUMEN. She has also worked with the Association of Defence Counsel at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia in The Hague, and the Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung in Beirut, where she researched the legal situation of refugees in Lebanon. Antonia Klein joined ECCHR as a legal advisor in June 2018 and has been a Bertha Justice Fellow since September 2019.
Matija Vlatković studied Politics, Philosophy and Economics at Oxford University and received a Master's degree in Human Rights Law from the School of Oriental & African Studies (SOAS) in London. He worked at the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), INQUEST and the Innocence Project and later lectured at the Free University of Berlin's Otto Suhr Institute of Political Science. Matija Vlatković joined ECCHR as a Kreuzberger Kinderstiftung Fellow in May 2018 and has been a Bertha Justice Fellow in ECCHR’s Migration team since September 2019.
Cannelle Lavite studied law at the Université de Toulouse (France). She was awarded an LL.M. with a specialization in corporate governance and criminal law from the Université de Montréal (Canada) and the Université de Lyon (France). After her graduation, she worked for several local organizations in Brazil and Mongolia focusing on socio-economic rights. She then worked at Human Rights Watch on the trial of Hissène Habré. Cannelle Lavite's doctoral thesis looks at the protection of whistleblowers under asylum law. In autumn 2018, she joined ECCHR's Business and Human Rights Program as a Bertha Justice Fellow.
Simon Rau studied international relations in Dresden and Managua (Nicaragua). After obtaining an LL.M. in human rights law from the University of Nottingham (UK), he supported ECCHR as Legal Trainee and Personal Assistant to General Secretary Wolfgang Kaleck. As a Mercator Fellow, he then worked at Human Rights Watch on the right to education of refugee children in Turkey, Greece, Lebanon and Jordan, and for Judge Nußberger at the European Court of Human Rights. He was a Bertha Justice Fellow at ECCHR from the fall of 2017 to the summer of 2019.