9-Year-Old Girl Donates 130 Bikes to Charity
This time of year, most kids are adding their final touches to their holiday wish lists. Piper Shumar, 9, of Grand Traverse County, Michigan, had other plans this year for her "wish list".
Piper was born with a chronic illness and has spent the last seven years in and out of the hospital, undergoing multiple surgeries and procedures. Despite her chronic illness and obstacles, Piper fell in love with the sport of biking and founded Piper's Project This Girl Can in 2018.
“When I was a kid, I wasn’t that healthy and I always loved biking so then I wanted to bike a lot and I wanted to start helping kids that had issues like I did and have something fun to do to get it all behind you,” said Piper.
After a race at the Meijer Slush Cup, Piper had an idea to pick up soda and beer cans for extra money to buy a new winter biking helmet. After two hours of walking and collecting every can she could find, she was able to score $97 in bottle return funds.
On Thanksgiving of 2018, Piper's Father had mentioned buying a bike with her bottle return funds and Piper's reaction was, "and give it to another kid?"
So, the family headed to Home Depot and purchased a bike. However, Piper had a hard time deciding whether or not to purchase a girl or boy bike. So her parents made a deal, they would purchase one bike with her bottle return funds and another out of their own pocket. They delivered both bikes to the VFW hall the next day.
You can probably already imagine what Piper was thinking next. How could she earn more money to buy more bikes for more kids? So she set a goal of 10 bikes by November. In the Spring of 2019, Timber Ridge Resort offered to set up a can bin for her project.
“Piper is a miracle,” said Richard Hines, Co-Founder of Northwest Michigan Bikes for Tikes. “I cannot believe what she’s done. It’s incredible.”
The final count for 2019 was 130 bikes, donated to the Bikes for Tikes campaign.
“She’s a kid that likes to help other kids, wants them to be able to do what she does, so we are grateful for everybody and the community,” said George Shumar, Piper’s father.
All the bikes have been assembled by volunteers and Piper can't wait for kids around northern Michigan to get their new set of wheels.
“It makes me feel really happy, not like pride but it’s like a joy because other kids get bikes when I have a lot of bikes and then I see them and they get a bike and probably would make me cry,” said Piper
With one “can” at a time, this girl "can,” and did, bring joy to the holidays.
If you would like to help, check out the "Piper's Project" Facebook page.
All posts may contain affiliate links. Read our disclosure policy here