Head Office-Meet the DreamTeam
Bronnie Davidson, General Manager
Bronnie gained most of his experience in the heady world of finance and administration. He has extensive experience in many areas, including data, staff and financial management. Bronnie has used his leadership and organisational skills as a team leader and manager to successfully contribute to the success of DreamWorker.
“I was a part of the corporate environment for years. It was all about formal structure, with money and profit at the forefront. There was no time for the softer issues, for heart and feeling in what I was doing. But I was guided to DreamWorker for a higher purpose and was blessed to be employed, initially as a bookkeeper.
Today, six years later, I am still loving the DreamWorker ethos. I have grown tremendously and have discovered both my operations and strategic thinking caps, to the point where I am now General Manager of the head office.
Being a ‘peoples’ person as well as a ‘numbers man’, I have learnt how to reach out even more to people, helping them improve their work ethic, giving them renewed hope and ultimately helping them to find work. I am passionate about making a difference in people’s lives, especially when it comes to unemployment. My vision is very clear: to be the best I can be, using my fullest potential and determination to share the good with others. I have certainly found my pure bliss at DreamWorker!”
Zuleigha started at DreamWorker as an interviewer and general office administrator, having had an extensive career in both administration and customer service. Before long she had taken on more and more responsibility and today handles a wide variety of administrative tasks from month end reports and co-ordination of the Link of Love programme, to a range of bookkeeping activities.. She also manages the activity of the placements department and liaises with the DreamWorker branch offices. As she puts it:
“I believe my major contribution to DreamWorker is my unwavering dedication and passion for work. Added to this, has been my desire to step in and step up, to take on more responsibility. It is this capacity for growth that has kept me inspired, excited and expanded every day.
After nearly 5 years I still love working for DreamWorker and still dream of us becoming a national brand in the future. I have found my playground at DreamWorker as it is my belief that the workplace should always be fun. It is with absolute pleasure and love that I come to work, to the place where I know I can really make a difference in someone else’s life…… every single day”.
After she matriculated, Robyn worked as a receptionist for an electrical company for a while. Then came a four year stint working for government as an administrator. “Working for the government is not for the weak willed! You have to multitask, work under pressure and take instructions from every side!”
From young, Robyn found great satisfaction working in her community, helping underprivileged children, through teaching music and vocal training. This combination of administrator and gentle teacher, makes Robyn the perfect person to be the helpful voice, encouraging employees to apply for a certain position or the confident person taking an employer brief.
“Through my community work, I could show people that when life isn’t perfect, there is always a passion somewhere for us. For me, it was music. Every day, I am constantly reminded that a touch of kindness and a simple smile can make all the difference. I encourage people to just try, to go for the interview, to never give up. My voice alone can be music to someone who has lost hope. My vision is to see all people rise above their circumstances and be part of a working South Africa”
Vicky Petersen started with DreamWorker as the Elsies River fieldworker in 2013. During that time, she came to realise that she had a true passion for her community and for helping people. When the fieldworker operation was closed in late 2014, we invited Vicky to join the head office team. It is her enthusiasm and unwavering commitment to helping the unemployed that has made her such an asset to the DreamTeam. She shares:
“What I really love is to connect with people, to encourage them and let them feel heard and respected in my presence. And when the lights of hope come on in their eyes again and the smiles return to their faces, I feel fulfilled. That is a day when I go to bed feeling truly blessed and honoured to make a difference in someone else’s life. I cannot necessarily give them work the same day, but I can always encourage and give hope to those who most need it. I believe everyone is special. All I have to do is remind them of that. And the best part of all, is that when I give love, I receive it too…and go home feeling happy, on purpose and deeply grateful!”
Muneeb began his working career in a factory. When his 3 month contract expired, he knew he could not go back. He felt he was destined for greater things! He did, however learn some valuable lessons such as how to manage his time, how to get along with people from all backgrounds and how to endure, to be patient and to always give of his best.
After this short contract, Muneeb joined the Chrysalis Youth Development Programme on the advice of his aunt. And that is how he found himself volunteering to help at DreamWorker, a decision that changed the course of his working life in a very positive direction:
“When I arrived at DreamWorker, I immediately felt a part of the team. Little did I know that after my time ended as a volunteer, I would be offered a full time position. I was delighted. At DreamWorker I get to do what I love most…..working with people and solving IT issues. I discovered that I have a huge passion for both. The feeling I get whenever an unemployed person finds work via us is quite indescribable. I love the environment and my colleagues in the DreamTeam. I wish with all my heart that when DreamWorker reaches its magic goal of zero unemployment in South Africa, I am still a part of the organisation!”
Tamson Adams, Reception and Office Administrator
Tamson Adams is the first face that most people will see when walking through DreamWorker’s door. She is also the first voice they will encounter when calling in. So for her, it is connection to people all the way……..
“Since joining the DreamTeam, I realized that I have a real passion for working with people from all walks of life, regardless of race, religion or culture. I love my work as it gives me a sense of purpose in knowing that I can instil hope in the many people looking for employment. I have come to realize too that I don’t need to go half way around the world to make a difference or make huge global impacts. Instead, it all starts with the small things, like a warm smile and a touch of kindness for someone who so desperately needs it”.
Ronald is a born and bred Capetonian and has lived with and been a part of the diverse cultures that make up our beautiful city all of his life. Having completed a business qualification, he gained experience over the next 10 years across many diverse business disciplines, from strategy to finance, human resources to management. Together with his wife, Tania, he founded and ran an advertising agency for 7 years, before setting his course for management consultancy full time. This led directly to being tasked to project manage a Hout Bay based programme for the unemployed, fueling a lifelong dream towards social entrepreneurship.
“I have a dream that by the year 2020 there will be no unemployment in SA. What this means, quite simply, is that everyone who wants to work, has work. I am passionate about my country and its diverse, resilient people. Work is dignity, work is contribution and yes, work goes a long way to fulfilling dreams. I want to make a significant contribution towards creating a prosperous society and I believe through DreamWorker this is truly possible. Every day, I am humbled to witness the joy and empowerment that employment brings to people.”
Tania worked her way through the ranks of advertising and marketing, before taking the plunge to start up a small agency with her husband, Ronald. She then took another plunge into a whole new range of work, from aromatherapy and reflexology, to teaching the Nia Technique, which she still does part time. And then a third plunge into the world of Social Entrepreneurship, once again together with Ronald. It was on this flight that they launched headlong into the world of unemployment…..and DreamWorker was born!
“I am truly proud of our magnificent organisation and the way we help the unemployed every single day. Apart from finding people part or full time work, we also have our Link of Love programme, my personal “. Through Link of Love we sell days of work at R100 to corporate or public donors, so that we can put people to work in their own community. I believe that everyone has the right to work, to contribute. In whatever capacity they can. Not necessarily in jobs, but to be able to work and earn, to put food on their table and restore their dignity. I love going home every day, knowing that we have helped every single person who walks through our DreamWorker door in some way. That they take a “gift” with them, be that a kind word, help with their CV, a loving touch, a place to cry or the miracle doorway to a new job! I want to go to sleep every night knowing that one less person will be facing the helpless, hopeless despair that emanates from unemployment.
I have been blessed to be a part of the transition from the dark days of Apartheid to the incredible strength of our nation today. I know that helping the unemployed is the most powerful way I can take my great education, my business and marketing experience, my love for South Africa and pave the way for a better future for the people of this great nation!”