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10 TikTok Activists Sparking Change

Bless your algorithm with creators using their social platform for good. 

January 20, 2023

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TikTok is proving to be more than trending dance moves and viral memes, but has transformed into a space where creators come to use the platform for good. With 60% of its users being under the age of 25, it’s growing clearer that GenZ is finding new ways to inspire change, and they're making it fun.

But you already knew that.

While it's hard to categorize the work of these creators — the impact of their work ripples through the viral space of social media. Each one educating and inspiring us to work towards a more equitable world.

1. @zahranurbiabani

@zahranurbiabani is a climate activist, influencer, CEO, and writer. Her content focuses on climate hope, optimism, humor, and action items. After unexpectedly establishing a career as an online sustainability educator and influencer her junior year at Vanderbilt University, Zahra decided to jump head first into the waters of entrepreneurship and authorship. Using positivity and hope, she educates us on how to care for our planet, delivers critical updates, and reminds us of those earthly wins we need to manage our climate anxiety.

2. @crutches_and_spice

@crutches_and_spice is an intersectional disability advocate who discusses how systems actively exclude and marginalize disabled people from institutions such as education and the workforce. Using wit and sharp insight, she reminds us that we all must remember and uplift disabled people, or our radical politics aren't that radical.

3. @genzforchange

@genzforchange is a coalition of digital activists who use guerilla tactics to stop political entities from spreading malignant policies. They have flooded Starbucks with 88,000 fake job applications in solidarity with Starbucks Workers United. @genzforchange also crashed Texas Right to Life's website in response to Texas's new, invasive anti-abortion law. And they're just getting started.

4. @Kahlilgreene

@Kahlilgreene is a digital American history creator who focuses on the hidden history of American injustices committed by various American institutions throughout America's short history in "Hidden History." He also runs more modern cultural commentary pointing out instances of columbusing with his series, "How Everything on This App Originated with Black People.

5. @paperbacks_and_frybread

@paperbacks_and_frybread is an indigenous bookseller who aims to help people decolonize their thought processes, starting with their bookshelves. She offers educators thoughtful suggestions on books highlighting marginalized kids' experiences, promotes BIPOC authors, and runs the "Decolonize Your Bookshelf Book Club." Offering levity and wit, @paperbacks_and_frybread helps spotlight often overlooked perspectives.

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6. @usimmigrationlawyers

@usimmigrationlawyers, or Michael Ashoori, Esq., is a working attorney who uses his platform to help undocumented immigrants understand America's confusing immigration laws. He advises on ways in which people can secure a green card or visa, what rights undocumented immigrants have in the United States, and tips to navigate any legal trouble that may arise while undocumented.

7. @coutureinclinic

@coutureinclinic, or Asia Sullivan, is a certified physician associate who focuses on making healthcare more accessible and less scary to the LGBTQ+ community. She demystifies and destigmatizes modern infections such as Monkeypox, discusses LGBTQ+ history's intersection with healthcare, and gives everyone advice on safeguarding their reproductive and sexual health.

8. @blackmenaces

@blackmenaces have chapters at various PWIs (predominantly white institutions) where their interviews are both investigative and entertaining. They uncover the beliefs about race, sexuality, and gender that a PWI student body may hold. Their "Asking Random Bringham Young University (BYU) Students If They Support Gay Marriage" was what caused them to blow up. However, their continuous polling of students' ideas on current social issues is what makes them continue to be relevant.

9. @karentangmd

@karentangmd is a working gynecological surgeon, pelvic pain specialist, and fierce reproductive rights and bodily autonomy advocate. She dispels heteronormative myths around reproductive organs and educates her viewers on normal and abnormal reproductive health issues. (Having a debilitatingly painful period is not normal). Dr. Tang also uses her platform to condemn the misinformation that politicians and other powerful institutions spread.

10. @spencer2thewest

@spencer2thewest uses humor and candor to talk about his day-to-day living as a gay man with physical disabilities. He addresses the physical barriers he may encounter in his life and how he circumvents these barriers. He also informs viewers about LGBTQ+ history and culture and how it intersects with disability rights. He creates a safe space for anyone curious about disabilities while encouraging us to be more critical regarding others around us.

At Teach For America we are using our platform to illuminate the intersections between education equity and the issues that impact us all. Dive into our library of streamable events, podcasts, and articles. Among this collection are inspiring moments with thought-leaders in social justice, professional development, educational equity, and wellness. Take the time today to learn something new, find new ways to grow, and shift your perspective.

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Interested in more posts like this?

Check out our blog, The Fuse, to learn, grow, and imagine a more equitable future, the role you can play, and how to be part of that change.
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