The comic book industry isn’t known for paying a lot to the artists and writers and other professionals who have kept that business going for at least a century now. There are a handful of exceptions, of course, those lucky few who have become so popular their names are often recognizable to fans, but the reality is that most creators of comic books don’t fare so well. Usually comic creators don’t own their work, but the publishing companies do and can continue to make money from those works long after the original creators are long gone.

I’m not going to jump into an argument about whether or not the comic publishers have been fair to the creators, because there are a lot of different opinions out there. However, there are those who have worked in the comics industry and are in need of a helping hand.

Fortunately, that help is available.

It’s called The Hero Initiative. Originally put together in 2000 by trade publishers and a handful of folks who have worked in comics, The Hero Initiative is a non-profit charity with the goal of helping comic creators with health, medical and quality-of-life issues.

Not just anyone is qualified for financial aid from The Hero Initiative, but those who have worked in the comics field for ten or more years and who do not own the properties they created are eligible, as decided by a board. Fundraising for The Hero Initiative comes from various sources, including art auctions, sales of collectibles and comics online, donations, and more. The Hero Initiative website even has a page where those in the comic industry can offer their services for a fee, allowing writers and artists and others to find work.

If you would like to help someone who has brought you joy and entertainment through comic books, you can pay a little back by helping out The Hero Initiative. Maybe you can make a donation or hire an artist. Every little bit helps.