Shifra Zeiler (right) at Chai Lifeline’s Tour de Simcha fundraising bike ride on July 19.
Shifra Zeiler (right) at Chai Lifeline’s Tour de Simcha fundraising bike ride on July 19.

“Life for a child with cancer, disability, or other serious illness is grueling,” Zeiler wrote on her campaign page. 

With their largest group of riders to date, Chai Lifeline’s Tour de Simcha fundraising bike ride took place on the country roads of upstate New York on July 19. The annual all-women’s ride raises funds for Chai Lifeline, the international children’s health organization providing social, emotional and financial assistance to children with life-threatening and lifelong illnesses and their families. 

The event has become known for its inspirational “World’s Greatest Finish Line” at Camp Simcha, Chai Lifeline’s medically supervised summer program for children with serious illness. Campers and staff gather at the finish line to celebrate with the riders, making the event and the work getting to this point even more meaningful. Among the riders are former Camp Simcha campers, survivors of cancer and other illness as well as relatives and friends who lost loved ones to disease but continue to ride in appreciation for what the camp does on behalf of this community.  

Former camper at Camp Simcha, 17-year-old Rosie Grossbaum, born with Cystic Fibrosis, joined the ride for the first time. Grossbaum, from Morristown, New Jersey, rode with her mother Rochie, to give back to the organization that has had such an impact on their family.

Shifra Zeiler from Oak Park met Rosie at Camp Simcha Special where she runs the pottery workshop, and grew close with Rochie when they rode together a few years ago. “Being a staff member, I saw the excitement that some of the campers experienced when they knew a rider personally riding for them,” Zieler said. “I thought how amazing would it be if every camper knew a rider personally riding for them? That’s what made me decide to ride – for all the Camp Simcha Warriors.”

Shifra Zeiler crossing the finish line in a previous year's bike ride.
Shifra Zeiler crossing the finish line in a previous year’s bike ride.

Zeiler has started a campaign where every mile she rides and every dollar she raises will help support more than two-dozen essential programs for more than 5,900 children and families confronting pediatric illness, crisis, and loss.

“Life for a child with cancer, disability, or other serious illness is grueling,” Zeiler wrote on her campaign page. “From the moment of diagnosis, Chai Lifeline’s dedicated staff and volunteers are there to provide joy, hope, and unparalleled care throughout the turbulent medical journey.”

Zeiler at work at Camp Simcha Special.
Zeiler at work at Camp Simcha Special.

Zeiler’s goal is to raise $20,000 and has already nearly reached it. All donations are 100% tax-deductible. To help Zeiler reach her goal, visit her campaign page

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