BECCA LEED, 24, GRADUATED FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF YORK WITH 2:1 IN ENGLISH LITERATURE AND PHILOSOPHY UNSURE OF A DIRECTION FOR HER CAREER. SHE NOW WORKS FOR A COMMUNITY LINKS PROJECT, ‘WE ARE WHAT WE DO’ (WWW.WEAREWHATWEDO.ORG). IT IS A CHARITY THAT AIMS TO INSPIRE PEOPLE TO USE THEIR EVERYDAY ACTIONS TO CHANGE THE WORLD.
WHAT MOTIVATED YOU TO CHOOSE THIS CAREER?
I left university and didn’t know what I wanted to do. I said I wanted my job to make a difference and that didn’t have to be about saving the world, or being on the front line but a cause or issue that I cared about. I was attracted to We Are What We Do as it wasn’t a typical charity job, it has a creative element and was different.
HOW DID PAST EXPERIENCES HELP YOU?
I decided to do some temping for a while in the not–for–profit sector – mainly charities – just to get some experience and see what interested me. While I was temping for different organisations it gave me an insight into different types of charities but the jobs I did weren’t the ones I wanted to end up doing. I didn’t find a charity I particularly wanted to work for during my temping. When I was at university, I volunteered in a homeless centre in my second year. I haven’t done a lot although it’s something I’m interested in. I did volunteering days last year for the Year of the Volunteer.
WHAT DOES YOUR JOB ROLE INVOLVE?
We are a very small team, only three full–timers including myself. We have our individual responsibilities but equally as it’s such a small team, you end up doing a bit of everything, which is really nice. My job at the moment involves helping to keep the office running smoothly as well as helping with PR and the international development. I do general things like answering the phones, email enquiries and deal with individual projects.
HOW IMPORTANT WAS IT FOR YOU TO HAVE AN ETHICAL CAREER?
When they left university, half of my friends were like me. We didn’t know what we wanted to do but we wanted to do something that we at least cared about. It wasn’t all about being ethical but that about doing something you have a passion for. We Are What We Do is honest about its ethical record and, like our book says, everything we possibly can do, we do.