By Boniswa Sidwaba, TikTok Content Operations Manager, Africa

100 creators, 20 grant recipients and 5 industry experts, Awesome! It was an action-packed few weeks for the creators who participated in TikTok’s first-of-its-kind ‘Rising Voice’ programme. Riding on the mission to inspire creativity and bring joy to the users, we at TikTok are now celebrating the victory of 20 extraordinary content creators who will each receive their share of about R860 000 as part of the Rising Voices project grant. In addition to the cash grant, recipients continue to receive mentorship that includes - content advice, conceptualising support and 10 pieces of content curation for their individual TikTok pages. This announcement comes as we concluded our first edition of the six-week Rising Voices incubator programme that aimed to help creators in upgrading their skills for content creation. 

Some of the highlights from Rising Voices include 839 million views received across creator content, 4.6 million followers gained, 2.1 million shares occurred and a total of 9,800 videos created, showcasing local and relatable content created during the course of the programme. This unique initiative was organised in partnership with the National Film and Video Foundation (NFVF), an agency of the South African Department of Arts and Culture. 

Makhosazana Khanyile, CEO of NFVF said “the NFVF is proud to have been chosen to partner with TikTok on this groundbreaking initiative. The opportunity to mold young content creators into future entrepreneurs that will learn to take advantage of all forms of media and monetise their ideas is one we were happy to support. Congratulations to all the young people that were chosen to take part and we look forward to future collaborations.”

Growing a diverse and all-inclusive community on TikTok remains a top priority for us. Through Rising Voices, our goal has always been to uplift and empower creators of colour on the platform, providing the necessary support to help them express themselves. With the right tools at their fingertips, we were truly spellbound by the incredible talent that came to light over the last six weeks.

Throughout the programme, the grant recipients, along with 80 other creators, were given mentorship, masterclasses and special training on content creation for TikTok. It was inspiring to see participants fully immerse themselves in creating quality content, participating in the masterclasses and taking to collaboration and connecting with each other with great enthusiasm. 

South Africa is home to extraordinary local talent which has the ability to stand out on a global stage such as TikTok. We trust that the skills learned, and discussions had, will empower this generation of content creators to create a bright future for themselves. On TikTok, the possibilities are really endless.

The 20 Rising Voices grant recipients were selected by a panel of judges from the TikTok Creator and Content Team based on their engagement levels, dedication to the programme and overall project immersion.

Keen to see how the programme unfolded? Check out #CelebrateRisingVoices on TikTok for all the masterclass action and highlights. You can also check out the full Rising Voices class here.

Full list of grant recipients (alphabetical order):

  1. brwnskn
  2. callherthato
  3. doctor.siya
  4. hallebberry
  5. kaylakimkay
  6. keraramz
  7. khanyisa_jaceni
  8. king.grrrr
  9. lxndi.nkengana
  10. moghelingz
  11. mrsizwe_sir
  12. nchls_b
  13. paballokgware
  14. perimaskitchen
  15. Refiloe.pinkpanther
  16. sphokuhle.n
  17. thando.khumalo
  18. thereal250goat
  19. thozimusic
  20. Witney8