Internship Opportunities @ WHO Regional Office for Africa

The World Health Organization (WHO) is a specialized agency of the United Nations (UN) that is concerned with international public health. It was established on 7 April 1948, with its headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland. The WHO is a member of the United Nations Development Group.

WHO, as the leader in global public health issues, is committed to building future leaders in public health. WHOs internship program offers a wide range of opportunities for students to gain insight into the technical work of WHO. WHO internships are not paid and all costs of travel and accommodation are the responsibility of the intern.

For this term, IFMSA has an agreement with WHO AFRO to facilitate internships at the regional and national level in Africa.


Internship opportunities will be offered at the WHO AFRO Office in Congo-Brazzaville and WHO country offices of the African Region that are willing to take interns. There will be accommodation for the selected interns in Brazzaville at a subsidized fee of $250 equivalent.

The applications will be continuously open and interns will be matched with appropriate technical or administrative programs based on their personal interests and skills all year around.

Fields of work
Internships are offered in a wide variety of areas including Medicine, Public Health, Social fields (related to technical work of WHO), etc. The more specific you can be in your request, the better chances there will be to suitably match you to one of the technical program under the internship.

Eligibility (who is the WHO looking for?)
The program will be available for students from their 3rd?year of study to 6 months after graduation.
Preferred duration for internship is 3-6 months.

To be eligible to participate in the WHO Internship program, interns must:

  • be at least 20 years of age on the date of application;
  • be enrolled in a course of study at a university or equivalent institution leading to a formal qualification (graduate or postgraduate) (applicants may commence their internship up to six months after the completion of their formal qualification;
  • have completed three years of full-time studies at a university or equivalent institution prior to commencing the assignment;
  • be fluent in either English or French, the working languages of AFRO.
  • not be related to a staff member as defined in Staff Rule 410.3 (e.g. son/daughter, brother/sister or mother/father);
  • have not previously participated in WHO’s Internship Program;
  • hold a valid passport of a WHO Member State (as a matter of policy, and for the avoidance of any international law issue, including with Member States and Host States, candidates for internship who do not hold a valid passport from a WHO Member State will not be considered)

Interns do not have the status of WHO staff members and cannot represent the Organization in any official capacity.

How to apply
Applicants from IFMSA shall apply through the formal application process on the WHO website:

They will notify their membership status to WHO in the Are you part of the IFMSA program? question. From the application form, applicants will have to state which cluster/department they will like to work with at the AFRO office or which country office.

Applicants will then have to send a Motivation Letter and NMO Membership Letter to the WHO AFRO at [email protected] and put in cc the Liaison Officer to the WHO ([email protected]) and the Regional Director for Africa ([email protected]). The CVs of applicants will be sent to the clusters or country offices they selected.

The cluster directors will be in charge of selecting the interns at the AFRO office. For the country offices, the cluster director will draft a Terms of Reference (ToR) for the particular intern selected which will be reviewed by the Liaison Officer to the WHO or the Regional Director for Africa.

Good luck in your application!

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