TikTok launches scheme aimed at tackling youth unemployment

TikTok has launched a programme to help young people find work in the creative and digital industries as part of a scheme to tackle youth unemployment and the digital skills gap.

The social media platform is working with the social business charity Catch22 on the multimillion-pound programme, which aims to engage with 2,500 people by the end of 2024.

The new scheme is targeting young people aged between 16 and 24 who are currently not in education, employment or training and will give them access to up to four weeks of an employability course, as well as a career coach, virtual work experience, mentoring, mental health support and access to a bursary.

TikTok said a key part of the programme would also be to encourage marginalised and vulnerable people to learn creative digital skills and use them to support their local businesses and creative industries and bring digital skills into local hubs.

Rich Waterworth, TikTok UK’s general manager, said that given the video-sharing platform’s general aim to encourage creativity, the new scheme was an obvious step.

“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,” he said.

“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.”

Kat Dixon, director of partnerships at Catch22, said: “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.”