Archive for June 2011

A new “Christmas in July” goal!!   Leave a comment

Momma Michelle has just written the new press release and sent it to the Portsmouth Herald to get a follow-up story, hopefully in this Sunday’s paper. It will also go out to the York weeklies tomorrow. The big story is our revised goal of a “Christmas in July” delivery now, because of the incredible pace of donations. The release is posted in its entirety, below. (Is there anyone else you can share Miles’ story with? Thanks.)



Michelle Chumsae
Tel: 207-451-3039

Amazed by Pace of Donations, Parents Now Hoping for “Christmas in July” Van for Son

June 14, 2011 – York, Maine – The recently launched fundraiser to get six-year-old Miles Chumsae of York a new wheelchair-accessible van has surprised its organizers and followers with the pace of donations. Three-quarters of the $40K goal has been raised in just the first five weeks.

Miles’ parents are amazed by the outpouring of support for their severely disabled son since the May 1 fundraiser launch date. “This is faster progress in getting Miles’ new van than we ever imagined,” Stephen Chumsae reported. “There aren’t words to describe how touched we are by the kindness of so many family members, friends, and strangers. This means that Miles will be able to get his much-needed van well before our original goal of Christmas. In fact, we are now hopeful that we may be able to give Miles a ‘Christmas in July’ van.”

“We are pinching ourselves to have raised $30K so quickly for Miles,” agreed Michelle Chumsae, founder of the cause. “We knew that our son–who faces so many struggles–is loved by many, but now we see how deep and strong this love runs. But there is still work to do. Raising the last $10K will be the hardest, because many of those close to us have already made their contributions. We are truly relying on the kindness of strangers now to finish the job.”

To make a “final stretch” donation to help “New Ride for Miles” achieve its new July goal, checks made payable to Miles Chumsae should be mailed to: Kennebunk Savings Bank, 2 Hannaford Drive, York ME 03909. Donations and tribute bookmark purchases can also be made securely at the cause blog site,

Several upcoming local events provide opportunities for community support toward the goal.
On Saturday, June 25, Garreth Bowie–whose family’s fundraiser for their son Aidan’s van inspired the Chumsaes’–is honoring Miles by running in the Bobcat Bolt 5K. To support Garreth’s run, the Bowies are requesting donations be made to “New Ride for Miles,” and supporters at the event, which starts at 9 a.m. at Oyster River High School in Durham.

On Thursday, July 7, the Upper Crust Pizzeria’s newest location at 41 Congress Street in downtown Portsmouth will be raising funds toward Miles’ new van by donating a portion of all sales that day to the cause. A Team Miles donation jar will also be available at the pizzeria that day, and a raffle will be drawn there that evening. “Ironically, we became fans of Upper Crust down in Boston when Miles was hospitalized so many times at MassGeneral. It’s some of the best pizza we’ve ever eaten, and we’re very happy to have Upper Crust in Portsmouth now–and so willing to help us,” Michelle said.

Miles and his family plan to attend both events.

To follow the Chumsaes’ final progress toward Miles’ safe new ride, subscribe at the cause site, the “New Ride for Miles” page on Facebook, and Twitter @newrideformiles.

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ABOUT “NEW RIDE FOR MILES” – “New Ride for Miles” is a grassroots fundraising effort created in the spring of 2011 with the goal of providing safe and accessible travel for profoundly disabled kindergartner Miles Chumsae of York, Maine. Being non-ambulatory, Miles is fully dependent on his wheelchair and a wheelchair-accessible transport for mobility. “New Ride for Miles” is working to raise funds for a preowned converted van to present to Miles. Only with the help of many will the dream of a safe new ride for Miles be realized. Visit for more information on how you can help.


Posted June 14, 2011 by Michelle in Uncategorized

NEWSFLASH MILEStone…you won’t believe it…   Leave a comment

NEWSFLASH: Several generous individual donations this week have pushed our “New Ride for Miles” fundraiser to the brink of $30K. It’s just five weeks since we launched this cause, and we’re rather speechless that we are already three-quarters of the way to our goal. We expected an eight-month run with a Christmas delivery of Miles’ van, but now it is clear that we will be able to take delivery much sooner than that, which is absolutely thrilling. This weekend I’m writing a new press release with the news, which the Portsmouth Herald will be picking up for a follow-up story on our crazy success. THANK YOU, TEAM MILES DONORS EVERYWHERE. Our sweet angel is soooooooo very loved by so many!

Miles can't wait for a van that fits him!

Posted June 11, 2011 by Michelle in Uncategorized

AMAZING first-month MILEStone   Leave a comment

We have thrilling and totally amazing news to share: WE ARE NOW HALFWAY TO OUR GOAL!!!! In the final hours of the last day of May, we received our largest individual donation to date, and hit the $20K mark. First, we want to thank these dear personal friends, whose generosity amazes us. And secondly, how extraordinary to have gotten this far in only the first month of an eight-month fundraiser!

Now, please excuse us while we go pinch ourselves some more.

T H A N K    Y O U .

Posted June 2, 2011 by Michelle in Uncategorized