How Devika became a Dream Candidate

In March this year, we launched the second Dream Candidate competition. Since then we’ve received lots of brilliant submissions, and our panel of judges faced a tough decision on their search for the most creative CV. However, Devika’s passion for the charity sector stood out to them, and we were delighted to announce that she was the winner last month. Find out more about her story, and her journey to becoming the Dream Candidate!

Dream Candidate winnerHow does it feel to be the Dream Candidate winner?
“Surreal and really exciting!”

How did you find out about the Dream Candidate competition?
“I read about the competition in the CharityJob newsletter and blog, and I thought it sounded like a great opportunity – I just had to give it a go.”

Why did you decide to do use Prezi to make your entry?
“I’ve used Prezi before on a project for the London Sexual Health Programme – to promote sexual health and well-being to young people. I got to grips with it at that point and I really liked the way that it engages the audience. It’s also a lot more engaging to work with than a traditional presentation, and you can include music and pictures.”

What drew you to charity sector?
“I’ve been volunteering since I was 15. It was actually mandatory at my school – so every year I was volunteering within the community. Then I really enjoyed my first year of university but I felt like something was missing. I wasn’t sure what, and and it took me the year to figure out that it was volunteering! In my second year I made sure I had some volunteering to do and I haven’t stopped since. I have worked with Action against Hunger, the Simon Community and I also worked with Crisis at Christmas, and youth involvement work with Rethink Mental Illness. I like to try lots of different things, because I think that is one of the best ways to figure out what you’re good at, and what you really enjoy.”


What did you like about other people’s submissions?
“I thought the submissions were really creative! I love that when you give people a license to be creative, they really go for it. People have some incredible skills and talents, and it always amazes me what people can do. I think sometimes we stifle our creativity, which is such a shame! It’s how your personality really comes out.”

What kind of charity would you like to work for?
“Mental health is what I’m really passionate about. I am interested in mental health and sexual health combined, and I feel really educated about it and willing to speak about it. I’m also very passionate about homelessness – I really want to be there to help.”

Are there any particular roles that appeal to you?
“My background is admin, but I’m actually really interested in projects. Working on projects is something I did on my last job and I fell in love with it quite quickly. I think my skills match project management, and I’m doing an online PRINCE2 course to consolidate my experience. I also really like working with stakeholders and volunteers – I like to be quite hands on! It’s the education and outreach elements of charity work that really appeal to me.”

Would you consider sending a creative CV to on an application?
“I would! The only reason we tend not to is that people are so focused on this one way of doing things – I think it’s really difficult to stand out and fit in at the same time. I was glad that the Dream Candidate judges mentioned passion as one of the things they were really looking for. I’m a very passionate person and it’s nice to feel rewarded for that.”

Devika’s fantastic CV will now be promoted to CharityJob’s 20,000+ recruiters. Devika has also won a free training session courtesy of the Media Trust, and a conference ticket, courtesy of the Institute of Fundraising. Congratulations, Devika!

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