Australian Internships

AusAID (Canberra)

AusAID is the Australian Government agency responsible for managing Australia's overseas aid program. The objective of the aid program is to assist developing countries reduce poverty and achieve sustainable development, in line with Australia's national interest. AusAID provides advice and support to the Minister and Parliamentary Secretary on development policy, and plans and coordinates poverty reduction activities in partnership with developing countries.

Summer vacation employment: AusAID's summer vacation employment program is an annual employment program for undergraduate students. Summer vacation employment is only available in Canberra and students from interstate are responsible for their own travel, accommodation and costs.

Internships: AusAID participates in the Australian National Internships Program administered by the Australian National University. The internship allows individuals studying development-related fields to undertake projects in AusAID as part of their study program. If you are interested in an internship with AusAID, see the Australian National Internships Program.

For further information, please visit: AusAID Short-term temporary employment


Australian Law Reform Commission

The Australian Law Reform Commission is responsible to the Federal parliament and is part of the Attorney-General's portfolio. The ALRC conducts inquiries - also known as references - into areas of law at the request of the Attorney-General of Australia. Although the ALRC cannot initiate its own inquiries, it is independent of government and is able to undertake research, consultations and legal policy development; and to make recommendations to the Parliament, without fear or favour.

The ALRC provides opportunities for interns to work alongside Commission members and legal staff. The ALRC does not provide any remuneration or financial assistance to interns. Interns work on a voluntary basis, and may work with the ALRC for a day a week for one semester, or for three weeks over the summer break (in January/February).

For further information, please visit: ALRC Legal internship program.


Embrace Education

Embrace Education is a not-for-profit organisation that provides free tutoring and other services to disadvantaged high-school students in Melbourne, Victoria. Our main focus is on assisting students from refugee or recent-migrant backgrounds, as we recognise these students often face a number of unique challenges to successfully completing their education. We aim to empower disadvantaged students through education and to help to equip them with the skills necessary to take control of their own lives. Part of the program involves offering support, and often a new friend to someone who may still be getting used to life in Australia.

Generally volunteers assist students with completing their homework, improving basic literacy and numeracy skills, developing student's reading, writing and comprehension and helping students to gain greater confidence in their studies. A large component of the Homework Club and Individual Tutoring programs is assisting students with specific content relating to their chosen subjects ranging from Business Studies to Chemistry. The vast majority of the students we assist are from refugee or recent migrant backgrounds, and may need a lot of help in getting their English skills up to speed. 

For more information, please visit: Embrace Education Volunteers.


Fitzroy Legal Service

Fitzroy Legal Service provides casework to clients in their catchment area and plays a significant role in the areas of law reform and community legal education, which is closely bound up with the practice of preventative law, demystification of the law, self-help and empowerment.

Law students are welcome to volunteer in any number of areas. Law student volunteers can assist on weekday evenings with legal advice. There are also opportunities available to assist in casework, community development projects and law reform, and administrative work during weekdays. Volunteer positions are quite flexible and can be on a weekly, fortnightly or monthly basis. Volunteers who are not also members of Fitzroy Legal Service should also apply for membership concurrent with their volunteer application.

For further information, please visit: Fitzroy legal Service Volunteer.


Public Interest Law Clearing House

PILCH is an independent not-for-profit legal referral service. It seeks to meet the legal needs of community groups, not for profit organisations and individuals from disadvantaged or marginalised backgrounds. PILCH acts as a facilitator for the community to access pro bono legal assistance from the private legal profession. PILCH also engages in targeted law reform and advocacy work, and provides community education and training.

Internships are available for students during the winter and summer breaks on a full-time basis for 3 week blocks. Alternatively, ongoing internships are available and require a one full day per week commitment during semester. Fellowships are also offered, which involve a 3 week commitment as an extension of a clerkship undertaken at a member firm.

For further information, please visit: PILCH Law Student Volunteer Program.


Prison Legal Education and Assistance Project (PLEA)

PLEA is a student run project based at Monash-Oakleigh Legal Service. The aim of the program is to provide education to inmates in order to foster a proactive approach to their handling their legal cases, thus empowering inmates with skills and knowledge in order to enable them to gain control in an environment where they may feel powerless. The program is divided into three sections, Court Readiness, Library Skills, and Parole Readiness. Volunteers must commit to a six month period during which they will be involved in preparing/researching presentation material, compiling publications or presenting seminars to inmates at the Metropolitan Remand Centre.

All PLEA volunteers are expected to commit to a minimum of four hours per week for six months. This time will be spent on preparing/researching presentation material, compiling publications or presenting seminars at DPFC. Volunteers need to be flexible with their schedule as dates for prisons visits invariably change, and are dependent on a number of factors outside our control. A larger commitment is required closer to prison visits, in order to undertake preparation prior to presenting at the MRC/DPFC. All volunteers must commit to the minimum number of hours, as well as monthly prison visits and fortnightly meetings.

For further information, please visit: Prison Legal Education Assistance Project.


Refugee Advice and Casework Service

The Refugee Advice and Casework Service (RACS) is a nation-wide asylum seeker legal service with offices in Melbourne and Sydney. In Melbourne, RACS amalgamated with the Victorian Immigration Advice and Rights Centre to become the Refugee and Immigration Legal Centre (RILC).

At any one time RACS has approximately 8-10 law student volunteers who volunteer at least one day per week for a minimum of 6 months to help with administration, research, reception and other tasks. The services provided by these volunteers are invaluable. Volunteers perform a variety of tasks - including country and legal research, assistance in preparation of section 417 and other submissions, delivery of documents to the Refugee Review Tribunal and the Department of Immigration and Multicultural and Indigenous Affairs as well as assisting with office and administrative work.

For further information, please visit: Working with RACS.

Refugee Council of Australia

The Refugee Council of Australia (RCOA) is the national umbrella body for refugees and the organisations and individuals who support them. It has more than 130 organisational members and 250 individual members. Formed in 1981, RCOA is a non-profit organisation registered as an incorporated association in the Australian Capital Territory. It is funded through contributions from its members and by project grants from philanthropic bodies and government agencies.

To volunteer at organisations working with and for refugees and asylum seekers in Australia, visit the link below.

For further information, please visit: Refugee Council of Australia - Victoria.


Refugee and Immigration Legal Service (QLD)

The Refugee and Immigration Legal Service (RAILS) is the only legal agency in Queensland specialising in refugee and migration law. RAILS is an independent not-for-profit organization working with volunteers to provide free legal advice, assistance and community education to disadvantaged people. It advocates in cases of most need before the Department of Immigration, review tribunals and, on occasions, to judicial review. The Service has a demand that far exceeds its resources and takes on only those highest priority cases with most merit.

Volunteers work for RAILS as day time researchers and assistants to caseworkers, evening advisors in refugee, immigration and general law, evening session coordinators and in other areas.

For further information, please visit: RAILS Volunteers

Right Now - Human Rights in Australia

Right Now is a volunteer, not-for-profit media organisation led by young people focused on human rights issues in Australia. We are committed to covering human rights issues through free, accessible, creative and engaging online, print and radio media. Our work begins with the belief that creating a positive, rights-respecting culture in Australia begins with the flow of information.

Our vision is an Australia where human rights are a part of everyday conversation.

Right Now regularly accepts applications for interns and ongoing volunteers. Please contact Kate Ervin at for more information.

Social Security Rights Victoria

Social Security Rights Victoria (SSRV) is a Community Legal Centre which provides legal advice and assistance to people in regards to Social Security and Family Assistance Law. Being a community organisation we rely heavily on volunteers and recognise the valuable contribution they make to both SSRV and its clients.

SSRV is looking for law students at any stage in their degree to volunteer. SSRV seeks people who have a desire to pursue a career in the community sector and enjoy working with people from a diverse range of ethnic and socio-economic backgrounds. Volunteers must also be aware and empathetic to the particular problems people on a low-income face and have a commitment to bringing about social justice for these people.

For more information, please visit: Volunteering at SSRV.


Sudanese Australian Integrated Learning Program

The Sudanese Australian Integrated Learning (SAIL) Program Inc. is a volunteer, non-profit, secular organisation that provides free English support & community services to the Sudanese refugee community in Melbourne, Sydney & Perth, Australia.

Volunteers can assist as English language tutors to students of a range of ages. SAIL tutoring is informal. Tutors work one-on-one or with small groups of students helping them with a variety of activities designed to improve their reading, writing, spelling, pronunciation, comprehension, conversation, concentration, and confidence. The SAIL Program supports a community with diverse needs, and by catering to the individual student, as opposed to fitting them into a set of guidelines or curriculum.

For further information, please visit: Volunteer at SAIL.


Women's Legal Service Victoria

The Women's Legal Service Victoria (WLSV) is a statewide legal service for women, specialising in relationship breakdown and violence against women. WLSV provides women with confidential free legal advice, assistance and referrals, including face to face advice, court representation, telephone legal advice and referral, legal education, and law reform activities on issues affecting women and their legal rights.

The service requires volunteers from time to time. Expressions of interest can be sent to: or contact Rebecca Carbone on (03) 9642 0877.


Other Volunteering Opportunities

Probono Australia

Go Volunteer

Youth Referral & Independent Person Program (YRIPP)