“The non-profit organization Reading With Pictures recently announced a new working relationship with the United Nations with plans to enrich the world through comic books. The initiative, titled Comics Uniting Nations, plans to use comic books to communicate the U.N.’s core goals for positive development around the globe. These comic books won’t be sold in comic shops, but instead will be given out worldwide both digitally and in print.
Newsarama spoke with writer and Reading With Pictures’ co-founder Josh Elder about this ambitious and altruistic mission, and about the comic creators and publishers involved. Elder also outlined the anticipated reach of these comic books and explained why they’re using Kickstarter to fund it.
Newsarama: Josh, what can comics do to communicate the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals?
Josh Elder: Everything. Comics are both digital and analog, so they can go anywhere. They traverse language barriers and bridge cultural divides (Think about instruction manuals in airplanes or the signage in airports – it’s all comics and cartooned figures). So if you’re trying to communicate something important to the broadest possible audience, comics are clearly the most superior medium possible.
Newsarama: And what does it mean for ardent comics fans?
Elder: If this project is everything we hope it will be, it could reach upward of 100 million people – many of whom have never even read a comic before. And that comic could make a meaningful difference in their lives. It’s the chance to do good with comics, but also to do good for comics. This could completely revolutionize the way that comics are viewed in the international aid community, in the educational establishment and more…”