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Meet the 2017 Pat Cox-Humanity in Action Fellows



Humanity in Action would like to introduce you to the 2017 Humanity in Action Pat-Cox Fellows. The 2017 program runs from January 27 through April 28, 2017.

Our Pat-Cox Fellows spend four days a week in the office of a Member of the European Parliament (MEP) or a Brussels-based NGO, and one Humanity in Action-themed day with lectures and site visits. The Fellowship was founded in 2005 and has helped over 100 Senior Fellows gain invaluable work experience at the European Parliament or with a Brussels-based NGO. You can learn more about the program here. If you are interested in applying, the annual recruitment opens in August.

The 2017 Pat Cox-Humanity in Action Fellows:

Duygu Cakir

Denmark (Copenhagen Fellowship 2015)

Duygu graduated with a MA in Middle East Studies from University of Southern Denmark in 2016. She further holds a BA in International Business Communication with American Studies from Copenhagen Business School. Duygu has lived in Istanbul in 2014, interning for an English-Turkish newspaper where she wrote about minority issues in Turkey. During her studies, Duygu has extendedly travelled in the Middle East, attending different programs, focusing on democracy and dialogue across cultures. In Denmark, Duygu has worked on different integration projects, mainly concerning antidiscrimination, minority rights and projects on dialogue across multi faiths and cultures. Among others, she has facilitated workshops for high school students on antiracism. In her free time Duygu also freelances and writes about Turkish politics and identity politics, mainly focusing on Muslim women. She has also written columns on the integration debate in Denmark. Duygu is a 2015 Humanity in Action Senior Fellow.


Anouk van Eekeren

The Netherlands (Amsterdam Fellowship 2016)

Anouk has recently earned her B.Sc. from Amsterdam University College with a major in medical sciences and a minor in law. Through her work as Chair of Amnesty International student group Amsterdam, she got to further explore her interests in human rights, and this was strengthened even more by her involvement with Humanity in Action. Her interests include women’s rights and human rights in the light of climate change, the latter being a core concept of the biannual arts festival Scopophilia she co-organised. Anouk aspires to pursue a Master in Environmental Policy with a focus on migration resulting from climate change, combining both her passion for the natural sciences and human rights. Anouk is a 2016 Humanity in Action Senior Fellow.


Alen Kerić

Bosnia and Herzegovina (Diplomacy and Diversity 2016)

Alen is a recent graduate with an MA in Human Rights and Democracy in South-East Europe from the University of Sarajevo and University of Bologna. His MA thesis explored the relationship between LGBTIQ and Catholic communities in Croatia, while interning at the Women’s Room, Center for Sexual Rights – Croatia’s only counseling center for victims of sexual violence. Prior to his graduate studies, Alen obtained a BA in Performance and Media Studies from Beloit College. He is a socially engaged and political artist, performing in mediums of theatre, dance and performance art. His current research explores religious aspects of the contemporary refugee crisis, as well as the politics of memory surrounding anti-fascist monuments in post-Dayton Bosnia and Herzegovina. He was born and raised in Konjic, Bosnia and Herzegovina. Alen is a 2016 Diplomacy and Diversity Senior Fellow of Humanity in Action.


Sonia Lépine-Persaud

France (Paris Fellowship 2007)

Sonia, an international jurist specialized in gender issues, has gained experience since 2007 in program management in the field of human rights, humanitarian aid and development in various organizations. She had the opportunity to work within a human rights’ NGO in New Delhi (India), the EU Fundamental Rights Agency in Vienna (Austria), the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent in Geneva (Switzerland) and a private consulting firm and a diplomatic mission in Ouagadougou (Burkina Faso). Sonia holds a Master’s degree in human rights and humanitarian law. She is a French native speaker and is fluent in English and German. She lives in Brussels since October 2016 with her husband and 2-year old daughter. Sonia is a 2007 Humanity in Action Senior Fellow.


Oumou van Rijen

The Netherlands (Amsterdam Fellowship 2016)

Oumou is currently finishing an L.L.M. Public International Law at Leiden Law School, where she previously earned her BA in Law with a minor in International Relations at Sciences Po in Paris. During her L.L.M, she volunteered at Gender Concerns International, an NGO in The Hague that aims at improving female leadership in the MENA region. Oumou is passionate about aerial acrobatics and debating. She occasionally holds debate workshops and serves at a judge at debate panels.


Hüseyin Sakalli

The Netherlands (Amsterdam Fellowship 2016)

Hüseyin is currently finishing his Bachelor’s degree in International and European Law from The Hague University of Applied Sciences. During his studies he worked in the port of Rotterdam, where he was often confronted with inequalities and the exploitation of posted workers, as a result he decided to specialize in human rights. Hüseyin has interned at a number of NGO’s including the Justice Leadership Foundation and the Amsterdam office of Humanity in Action. He is particularly interested in solving challenges in the field of human rights with the use of technology. Hüseyin aspires to become a human rights lawyer and is currently writing a thesis on ethnic profiling in The Netherlands. Hüseyin is a 2016 Humanity in Action Senior Fellow.


Léo Tamayo

France (Copenhagen Fellowship 2016)

Léo holds a B.A. in political science and is currently a student in Master’s program in Public administration and social regulation at University Paris-Dauphine. He was born in Paris but his family came from Spain and spent most of his life on La Réunion, a small French overseas island next to Madagascar. During spring 2016, he interned at Welcomeurope, a European consulting firm based in Paris and specialized in European funds. Léo is very attracted by cinema and video making. He is very interested in migration and discrimination issues, with a focus on Roma population. Therefore he intends to pursue his master’s program in migration studies next year. Léo is a 2016 Humanity in Action Senior Fellow


Femke Zeven

The Netherlands (Amsterdam Fellowship 2016)

Femke is 23 years old, and is currently living and working in Amsterdam. She graduated from the University of Amsterdam in 2015, with a B.Sc. in Cultural Anthropology. During her bachelor’s degree, she specialized in conflict studies, migration and human rights. Her final field work and research was on undocumented migrants in Amsterdam, citizenship and the tension between the universality and nationality in granting human rights. Since obtaining her BSc, she’s been part of the UNISCA Board, the Model United Nations of the University of Amsterdam. Additionally, she has been working at the municipality of Amsterdam, and she has done internships at War Child and Humanity in Action The Netherlands. This is also because she loved HIA right away, and couldn’t say goodbye after the HIA Fellowship in Amsterdam. Femke will start studying Law in September 2017, in order to gain legal and practical skills to do work related to social justice and human rights. Femke is a 2016 Humanity in Action Senior Fellow.