Amazing Kids! Magazine

Amazing Kids! Magazine Interview with Aidan Anderson

By Victoria Feng, Editor-in-Chief

 

Aidan Anderson is a musician and founder of Aidan Cares, an organization that is focused on helping people and encouraging others to do the same.  He originally got his start by donating over 300 pills to help children in Africa and has helped many more in the years since.  Through his talks and songs, Aidan works on inspiring others.

Amazing Kids(AK): What inspired you to start Aidan Cares?

Aidan Anderson (AA): Every week since I was 2, my Mom, Toren aka Mama T, would help me learn about needs around the world. She also taught me about serving others in many ways and included me when she served. We went on casserole drops to feed sick people, we took food, water and warm clothing the homeless and lots of other things. I learned about providing for others in many different circumstances. From age 4, I knew I wanted to be a difference maker and I didn’t want to wait until I was 18. It was in my heart.

So at age 7, when I played my little plastic harmonica toy to be boredom in a restaurant one night and made $80 in unexpected tips, it felt so right to give that new found wealth away. I had recently learned about children suffering in Africa in need of parasite medication and the cost was 4 pills for a dollar. So there was 320 pills to help. Then Mom told a branding client about my “give” and then he offered for me to come to his corporate launch event in Atlanta. We raised a lot of money for pills there. I spoke and played my harmonica song. Just seeing that I, a short little kid, could help ease suffering and also encourage people to give, well, I was hooked and inspired to keep on.

AK: How do you find inspiration for your music?

AA: Every aspect of life can be an inspiration for me. My inspirations are as simple as walking the squares of Savannah, navigating my way around New York City, singing in Grand Central Station, to even hardships where it seems writing is the only way to vent and get through. And heck, even a really good bite of food can make me want to write a song. A lot of love songs are probably written about chocolate.

AK: How do your talks and music affect each other?

AA: They are definitely interwoven. I usually begin with harmonica since that’s what got me here, you know, in the beginning. I think it’s a great thing, as speeches can sometimes run together. The song breaks keep things going and audiences are more engaged. They love the harmonica breaks. It’s a pick up for sure. Plus, the whole story is about finding what you love and doing it to serve. Music is a huge part of me. On stage it is truly my two passions together. I haven’t had to pick my passion, I do them both. I serve and I get to sing. It’s a blast.

AK: What the most challenging part of creating Aidan Cares?

AA: Going against the norm. Creating a new normal where my life was poured out in service. And, walking this out whether other people “got it” or not. We have shared so vulnerably about our mission. Pats on the back are not the goal, the reason for sharing is to find solutions on to how to expand this crucial movement. We are now at Defcon one with my generation, adults need to model giving for children and give them opportunities suited to them to make a difference in the world before it’s too late and they are in the habit of selfishness. We reward scholars, athletes, musicians, artists and more. But what about the givers? They may be the most important among us.

But me being seen as “rare” is not what I would like.  I don’t want to be seen as rare. Instead the goal is to see children and adults find what they were born to do, find their own passions and then give from that place.

My Mom is my team mate 100%. She has walked out the challenges with me and for me. We have been at this a long time. It’s been the best way to spend my childhood because it’s meaningful. We have been just a kid and his Mom just saying yes. Anyone can do this. Just say yes! When we learn of specific needs, we try to reach out and help others so they know that some people do care and that they are not alone. We are in our 10th year now. We have crashed in nursing homes and penthouses to share this mission, with the message that giving redefines your life and brings well being to all.

AK: If there was one thing about the world you could change, what would you change?

AA: I would change the general way of thinking that someone’s contribution is lacking in some way. All giving matters and it is part of having a whole life. I wish people didn’t believe the lie that what they have to give is not enough. It is!

AK: What do you think is your greatest achievement?

AA: I think my greatest achievement is being myself and able to walk out what I love. It’s the best thing we all can do.  It is something I work on so that I can encourage others to be authentic. That’s where giving begins, when we get real.

AK: What are your goals for the future?

AA: I always say “this plus” meaning what I am doing now, but amplified. I love serving, I love sharing my story to help others see if a 7 year-old gets it they can too. And I love writing and performing music.  In Atlanta every Saturday I serve as a block captain in a very needy community. It is is something that has been part of molding me and in the future there will be as much service as possible just like now. To date, I have served thousands of hours in all kinds of ways. That part of my life won’t ever stop.

Also, I look forward to being drafted into the NBA. But this Aidan Cares thing is pretty good too.

AK: What advice would you give to our readers about following their dreams and making a difference?

AA: Start small and GO BIG! There is no ceiling on living to give. People are waiting to be prompted to give in our current society. You can ignite others by your example of giving. Fact. How cool is that?

AK: Is there anything you’d like to add?

AA: Yes, a huge cultural lie is that we should shut down during our hardest times. That’s not true at all, in my belief. Instead, we can do what my Mom and I call “giving through” that means we just keep going and giving and that may be what gets us to the other side.  If your heart is in the right place, the level of impact you may have can astonish you. The ripple effect is a real thing.

Also, don’t compare, we can only do our part. It’s amazing to see no matter what your walk in life, it’s wonderful to give all people a chance to give and watch how it immediately impacts them. This message isn’t just for the upper class. It’s for all to walk out.

We look to others to solve problems we are just as capable of solving. We have to contribute our parts first before we just expect someone we don’t know to fix the needs of the world. We have to do something if we really care. Love is an act. Living to give is life’s greatest answer.

Leave a Reply

Complete the problem to Comment: * Time limit is exhausted. Please reload the CAPTCHA.