Our guiding star at TikTok is to inspire creativity and bring joy. But we know that creativity doesn’t just happen. It needs to be encouraged, nurtured, and given space. A country where digitally-skilled young people are being more creative is a better country for everyone.

But unfortunately thousands of younger people don’t have the opportunity or skills to be creative and there is inequality of access to creative and cultural resources. At TikTok we want to be part of the solution, creating real change that benefits each young person, benefits creative institutions and benefits communities across the UK.

That's why today we are delighted to be able to share details of a new partnership with social business Catch22, aimed at helping thousands of young people, currently not in education, employment or training (NEET), find work in the creative and digital industries.

The programme will focus on providing creative and digital jobs training to over 2,500 marginalised young people from all over the UK, equipping them with the skills they need and supporting their local creative industries in the process.

The multimillion pound programme, which is part of TikTok's CSR strategy to support youth digital skills and employment, will offer participants who are 16-24 year-olds and NEET access to:

  • A 3-4 week employability course and guidance through technical qualifications and achieving accreditation, as well as online courses
  • A career coach to guide them towards goals and actions plans, as well as advice and workshops led by TikTok employees
  • Virtual work experience, jobs fairs, mentoring and networking events to build their industry specific skills
  • A 24-hour mental health service and support with housing
  • Access to bursary and a laptop loan scheme

TikTok will create an advisory board of experts and stakeholders who will provide recommendations on the design and roll out of the programme. The panel will include representatives from TikTok and Catch 22, policymakers, academics, young people and creative professionals.

The programme will be heavily shaped by the young participants, with our TikTok representatives also taking an active role in areas such as mentoring, delivering insight workshops on creativity and speaking at events to promote the programme.

A central part of the programme is the partnership with cultural institutions in the community, helping bring next generation digital skills to museums, music venues and other local hubs around the country.

“I’m delighted that firms like TikTok and Catch22 are creating such valuable new opportunities for this country’s young talent. Schemes like these will help us level up opportunity across the UK and support the storytellers of tomorrow to build a world-leading digital and creative sector which represents the best of the UK economy and its people.” said Chancellor Rishi Sunak.

"There are fantastic job opportunities in our world-class creative and digital industries and we want to make sure they are accessible to people from all backgrounds and regions. We're supporting young people to succeed in these sectors and I look forward to seeing the positive impact this new partnership will have on improving access for the next generation of tech talent." said Digital Secretary Nadine Dorries.

"At TikTok our mission is to inspire creativity and bring joy. Creativity doesn’t just happen. It needs to be encouraged, nurtured, and given space. But thousands of younger people don’t have the opportunity or skills to be creative and there is inequality of access to creative and cultural resources. We want to change that. We are thrilled to be partnering with Catch22 to bridge the gap between young people and the creative industries - to truly enable creativity for all" said  Rich Waterworth, GM, TikTok UK

“TikTok is a bright, visionary brand that young people understand. When young people engage on digital platforms, they are flexing their creative muscles and digital skills. This programme reaches out and empowers them to translate those skills into exciting career options. As a charity in the digital age, we must constantly re-learn to speak the language of young people. This partnership between Catch22 and TikTok sparks a new kind of career conversation, helps employers find fresh talent, and empowers young people to build their future.” said Kat Dixon, Director of Partnerships at Catch22.

If you are a young person, or know a young person who would be interested in taking part in the programme, please follow this link: https://www.catch-22.org.uk/services/the-creativity-project/