Taryn Lock.jpg



Social Entrepreneurship

Social Development

Children's Book Illustrations

Fine Art Photography

My Story


I am a third generation South African Chinese. I was born and raised in Johannesburg, South Africa. I studied at the University of the Witwatersrand and graduated with a BSc (Mathematics & Computer Science) and a BScHons (Mathematics).


I worked as a Business Consultant and Strategy Analyst. In 2013, after a sabbatical in Boston where I tutored English to Chinese immigrants, I decided to quit my corporate job and dedicate my life to literacy and social development in South Africa.


In 2013, Athol Williams and I founded non-profit organisation READ to RISE to promote youth literacy in under-resourced communities in South Africa. I am the Executive Director. To date the organisation has conducted over 2,700 class programmes at over 80 primary schools in Mitchells Plain, Soweto, Makhado and surrounds - a total of over 135,000 new story books have been given out and over 70,000 children have benefited from the READ to RISE programmes.

In 2017, I founded Proudly Chinese South Africa to promote Chinese culture and Chinese individuals/organisations doing great things in South Africa. I believe that it is important to remember where your ancestors are from, to celebrate each other's accomplishments and support each other.

I started It all starts with reading to promote a reading culture and I also started Doing Great Things in South Africa to promote and support NGOs in South Africa.

I am the illustrator of the OAKY Series of children's books written by South African poet Athol Williams. There are currently five books in the series. We are hoping to publish two more Oaky books in 2019.

I run a publishing company Theart Press, which publishes inspirational poetry, autobiographies and children's books. Profits go towards READ to RISE so that more children in under-resourced communities can get new books to own.