FAQ #1 - What’s with the superhero theme?

The Sidekick Collective was inspired by an essay Founder Paige Edmiston wrote as a high school student, in response to an essay contest sponsored by Seattle author Eric Liu and venture capitalist Nick Hanauer. In this essay, What True Patriotism Means to Me: A New Breed of Superhero for the 21st Century, Paige identified a problem:

“And we see them in every eight-year-old Superman, Spiderman, and Batman running around the neighborhood on Halloween. America loves a good superhero. The only problem with this superpower love affair is that the superhero is not real. When that eight-year-old is but a few years older, saving the world is reduced to a movie-preview tagline enjoyed with popcorn at the multiplex.

But I believe superheroes are real.”

At The Sidekick Collective, we believe we can solve this problem by finding and supporting superheroes who do exist in the real-world — and by inspiring others that our eight-year-old dreams of saving the day can come true if only we make the choice to do what superheroes do: help others first, make right what’s wrong and protect the vulnerable.

FAQ #2 - What do Cosmic Heroes receive?

Cosmic Heroes currently receive $500–$2500 in seed funding for a project to make the world a better place. Amounts are subject to fundraising and may change in the future.

FAQ #3 - What is the nomination and selection process?

The Sidekick Collective receives nominations from teachers, mentors, youth leaders and others who know extraordinary young people.

Have an exceptional young person in mind? You can nominate them here.

FAQ #4 - What are the selection criteria?

We search for students who think a little differently, have exceptionally big hearts, and do what superheroes do: help others first, make right what’s wrong and protect the vulnerable. We are particularly interested in hearing the innovative and entrepreneurial ways nominees have demonstrated these characteristics.

FAQ #5 - Do you get a return on Cosmic Hero projects?

We have no financial stake in Cosmic Hero projects. We hope to see the world made a little bit — or a lot — better.

FAQ #6 - Do you have paid staff?

Nope! At this time, The Sidekick Collective is entirely a labor of love by its ever-growing number of volunteers (aka ‘Sidekicks’).

FAQ #7 - Are you a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit?

Yes! Our Federal Tax ID number is 47-2669575.