Fortify Rights works to ensure human rights for all. We investigate human rights violations, engage people with power, and strengthen the work of human rights defenders and affected communities. We believe in the influence of evidence-based research, the power of strategic truth telling, and the importance of working in close collaboration with individuals, communities, and movements pushing for change. Fortify Rights is an independent, nonprofit organization based in Southeast Asia and registered in the United States and Switzerland.


Supporting human rights defenders is a core component of Fortify Rights’ work. The Human Rights Defender Associate advances Fortify Rights’s work to strengthen human rights defenders and communities affected by human rights violations. They work closely with Fortify Rights’s country-based human rights specialists, technical team, regional directors, and executive leadership to build and expand the organization’s capacity to provide knowledge-and skill-building support, facilitate access to opportunities for human rights defenders,  and improve the protection and security for human rights defenders. They serve as a knowledgeable and experienced resource on supporting the work and needs of human rights defenders and individuals at-risk. The Human Rights Defender Associate receives support from the Regional Director Team and strategic direction and technical oversight from the Executive Team.


  • In collaboration with the Fortify Rights’ country-based Human Rights Specialists and other team members, the Human Rights Defender Associate will develop a concrete and coherent strategy to support, complement, and amplify the work of Fortify Rights’ community-based partners, including human rights defenders, affected communities, and civil society organizations. 
  • In coordination with country-based Human Rights Specialists, work closely with and provide ongoing technical support to community-based partners. Consult regularly with partners to identify strategic objectives and gaps and develop coherent action plans to address gaps and strengthen collective responses to human rights violations. Support the implementation of action plans in coordination with country-based Human Rights Specialists.
  • Develop and customize tailored skill-building curriculum and lesson plans for action-oriented, participatory trainings, practicums, and workshops for community-based partners. Work in coordination with Fortify Rights’ team members to implement skill-building exercises for partners.
  • Identify and facilitate opportunities for community-based partners to engage with government officials, decision-makers, and people with power to improve the human rights environment and address violations. Support activities that complement and amplify the work of community-based partners. 
  • Identify and implement strategies to meet protection needs and improve resilience of community-based partners. Serves as a bridge between at-risk human rights defenders and emergency grant providers—helping human rights defenders navigate the complex and varied processes to secure urgent relief from donors when needed.
  • Implement other tasks to respond to needs identified by partners. 
  • Contribute to timely reporting through regular monitoring and reporting on project activities and support the Impact, Monitoring and Learning Associate in tracking and gathering data to evaluate the progress of projects.
  • Work closely in collaboration with the Fortify Rights team to ensure effectiveness, scale the organization’s impact, and ensure sustainability. 
  • Perform other tasks as requested. 


  • Post-graduate degree in relevant fields, such as human rights, education, civil society management, or participatory learning. 
  • At least five years of experience conducting trainings, participatory learning exercises and/or facilitating learning and advocacy opportunities for human rights defenders, affected communities, and civil society organizations. 
  • Demonstrated experience in developing curriculum and lesson plans for participatory learning. 
  • Experience working collaboratively and effectively with human rights defenders and affected communities. 
  • Strong communication and interpersonal skills. Ability to effectively communicate with diverse audiences, including survivors and witnesses of abuse. 
  • Knowledge and/or experience working on human rights issues in Asia preferred.
  • Excellent writing, organizational, and time management skills. Ability to work independently and as part of a flexibly structured team. A willingness to learn and contribute to a positive team environment. A desire to implement innovation and creative solutions to complex problems.
  • Willingness to travel within Asia. This may include travel to remote and potentially insecure areas.  
  • Fluency in written and verbal English required. Additional language skills preferred. 
  • Applicants from Southeast Asia preferred.

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