8-Year-Old Collects Cans to Buy New Bikes for Less Fortunate Kids

Yes she can.

That’s the motto 8-year-old Piper Shumar from Traverse City lives by.

It’s what inspires her to help others, which she does one can at a time.

Piper collects returnable bottles and cans to raise money to buy bikes for less fortunate children.

She collects, sorts, and returns hundreds of cans every week that pile up in a special bin at the Timber Ridge RV and Recreation Resort in T.C.

She’s passionate about giving back, even though the way she does it isn’t always glamorous. She says sometimes, it’s actually kind of gross.

“I went around and went through dumpsters and Port-O-Johns and all around…to pick up cans,” said Shumar. “I actually got really gross and grimy after picking up all the cans.”

It can be a sticky affair, but it’s all worth it when it affords another child the simple pleasure of riding a bike. She’s bought 29 new bikes so far.

Piper loves riding her bike with her family and does the Iceman Cometh Challenge with her Dad.

She started collecting cans after the 2018 race.

After finishing the course, she went around the site picking up returnables and made $90.

Her family decided to spend the money on a new bike.

That’s when she realized she could keep up the habit to help more kids.

“I think every kid should have a bike because it should be a good exercise,” said Shumar. “Even going on a little bike ride is still really fun. I think it’s cool that people are helping me.”

Piper’s bin fills up every week, and many businesses and local groups have collected cans to help her cause.

She wants to collect 50 bikes this year.

If you have cans to donate, you can drop them off at the Timber Ridge site in Traverse City.

If you’re not local, you can check out her Facebook Page here, or email pipersproject2018@gmail.com