Welcome to #CarryABeadFriday! Meet Anderson …

Each Friday we will be posting about caring individuals that have exemplified what it means to Carry a Bead! Our Carry a Bead program encourages participants to wear their pin while doing any activity. You could wear it while reading a new book, to your first concert, while walking your dog, or even on an adventure around the world! The options are limitless when you Carry a Bead! No adventure is too small. 

Anderson with his Beads of Courage

For our first couple of weeks we will be sharing the stories of the amazing children featured on our Carry a Bead cards. For our inaugural Carry a Bead Friday, meet Anderson!

Anderson was diagnosed with hypoplastic left heart syndrome, a birth defect a birth defect of the heart where the left ventricle is critically underdeveloped, just a day after being born.  He had his first open heart surgery when he was seven days old in an attempt to fix the defect and since then has had three more.  Anderson has also had eight cardiac catheterizations, a procedure where a thin tube is inserted in an artery or vein and is threaded through to the heart. Read more …


While this is all very scary for a child, Anderson faces his challenges without fear. Beads of Courage has provided Anderson and his family a way to understand the complexities of his special heart. He has a large collection of beads, the gummy bear bead being his favorite, because they show the world that he has been brave every time he has gone to the hospital.  “Early on, his beads were more for us,” said his mom Meredith, “but now that he’s older he understands. He loves to get his beads out and look at them.”

Today, Anderson is a bubbly and fun five-year-old. To hear from him about how he is doing, check out our Facebook video!

To learn more about our Carry a Bead program, and to purchase your own kit, please go to beadchallenge.org. If you do not specifically request an Anderson featured Carry a Bead kit in the Comment section of your purchase, then it is not guaranteed that you will receive an Anderson featured Carry a Bead kit. But that’s okay, because all of our Carry a Bead kids are AWESOME!