'Comics Uniting Nations' Campaign Brings UN Goals to Four Color Life

Collaboration between the United Nations and comic creators will educate about the UN's "to do list."
Courtesy of Comics Uniting Nations

Fans are used to comic book heroes saving the world, but what about comic books themselves? A new initiative hopes to do that very thing, with non-profit organization Reading With Pictures teaming with publishers and other activist groups to support the United Nations' attempt to make the world a better place.

Comics Uniting Nations is a collaboration between Reading With Pictures, PCI Media and PVBLIC Foundation, all of whom are working with the United Nations Post-2015 Development Planning Team and with the United Nations Millennium Campaign to create a series of comic books designed to educate about the UN's Sustainable Development Goals ahead of their ratification this fall.

The intent of the goals is to create a framework for countries across the globe to deal with problems such as gender inequality, poverty and lack of education worldwide. Described by RWP as a "to-do list for the planet," it's something that could be too abstract for people to wrap their heads around, which is where Comics Uniting Nations comes in: creators including Fred Van Lente, Roxanne Palmer and Ilias Kyriazis will create comic books illustrating each goal, which will be published in multiple languages around the world.

“Having a team of artists from different countries around the world, all collaborating and contributing content for the cause, seemed like a perfect metaphor for the United Nations,” said UN event producer Natabara Rollosson in the official announcement of the project.

A number of publishers have pledged support, including Oni Press, Archie Comics, Boom! Studios, IDW Publishing, Dynamite Entertainment, Dark Horse Comics and many more. All will provide material support and content to the finished products.

The project launched a Kickstarter campaign Tuesday. Josh Elder, founder of Reading With Pictures, explained in a statement that "Fans around the world already know that comics can change lives, because comics changed theirs. Now we’re asking for their help so that we can use comics to unite all nations."