By Richard Waterworth, General Manager, EU
At TikTok, our mission is to inspire creativity and bring joy. Since we first launched, our community has produced memorable cultural moments, made us laugh through the creation of unique memes, motivated us to dance, taught us something new, and allowed us to have fun regardless of our age or language.
As millions of people around the world adjust to social distancing and feel further apart than ever before, it has been humbling to see people turn to TikTok for moments of light relief in the face of such struggle.
Today, we have outlined our global commitment to support front line medical workers, educators, and local communities. As part of this commitment, €62M ($68M USD) will support healthcare workers, educators, and local communities in Europe, while €18M ($20M USD) in ad credits will help businesses in Europe to rebuild. We will also continue to donate prominent in-feed ad space to trusted organisations and local health authorities to provide credible information to help our community stay safe.
Under the global commitment, support schemes that will be launched in Europe include:
TikTok Health Heroes Relief Fund
Throughout this global battle, healthcare workers are putting their safety at risk, often spending long periods away from their families and working under challenging conditions to save lives. To support those at the frontline of this pandemic, in March we donated $10 million to the World Health Organization's Solidarity Response Fund. As the scale of the impact on our health service and its people has become more pronounced, we're pleased to announce the TikTok Health Heroes Relief Fund in Europe with €45M ($50M USD) of funding.
This will provide support to frontline medical workers and carers so that when they finish a long shift, they don't need to worry about covering the essentials like rent and basic household needs. To begin with, we are working with leading local health organisations like Frankfurter Schwesternschaften des Deutschen Roten Kreuzes (Frankfurt Sisterhood of the German Red Cross), as well as other organisations in Italy, France, and the UK to direct the money to those who need it most.
TikTok Creative Learning Fund
With tens of millions of students around the world out of school, educators and parents need help facilitating ongoing learning from a distance. The same is true for the millions of creative professionals who were suddenly forced to find new ways to connect with people who depend on their services. Creative educational content on platforms like TikTok can help, and we will be providing €13M ($15M USD) in grants to educators, professional experts, and nonprofits whose real-world skills and expertise can help spread educational information and useful course material in an accessible, distance learning format.
Helping SMBs to recover and rebuild
To provide support to SMBs to help them recover from this current crisis, we will be providing around €18M ($20M USD) in ad credits to help companies in Europe get back on their feet. We will begin to issue funding once public health authorities provide further guidance as to when it is safe for businesses to begin to restart their operations.
Supporting the TikTok community
This global health crisis is being felt by everyone and the uncertainty can have an impact on everyone's wellbeing. As a global platform, we are focusing on ways to support our community through this difficult period. In partnership with health organisations like the World Health Organization, NHS, and Italian Red Cross we have been providing easy access to trusted and reliable information. After joining TikTok, the World Health Organisation reached one million followers within a month and their educational livestreams have generated tens of millions of views.
We have also been inspired by how the TikTok community is coming together to share their creativity and support one another during this difficult time, from saying a huge thank you to our healthcare workers and those at the front of this battle through #ThankYouNHS and #GrazieaVoi to getting families involved in the #BlindingLightsChallenge. To support these efforts we have launched a livestream series with popular creators, under #HouseOfTikTok in the UK, to help keep people active, entertained and upbeat as they spend most of their time at home.
Throughout this time, we are also mindful that some communities will need financial support to be able to continue to exist. To support local organisations and groups representative of our diverse user base, we will match up to €2.7M ($3M) in donations in Europe to groups including musicians, artists and educators.
As everyone does their best to come through this crisis, we look forward to sharing more information about our partnerships soon and we will continue to seek more ways to contribute to relief efforts in the days and months ahead.