Hannah's Helpers hosts 'Train for Change' fundraiser

HANFORD, Calif. (KFSN) -- A Central Valley organization is taking action to make a difference in the lives of the families of children with special needs.

Hannah's Helpers is hosting its inaugural fundraiser train ride on April 23 at Sugar Pine Railroad in Fish Camp.

"We'd love to work together to try to make our community even more inclusive," said organization CEO Jeff Detlefsen.

Detlefsen is the father of Hannah, who was born with a rare condition.

The non-profit focuses on supporting families, nurses, and health care providers of special needs families. The organization has completed several projects to increase accessibility at family-friendly locations.

RELATED: Hanford family helps others with special needs

"As we as we get out into the community, and we talk to more families, we're definitely finding so many more people that are supportive of it, that just had no idea that it was a need, that wasn't being met," Detlefsen said.

The money raised at next week's fundraiser will go straight to more of those efforts, such as adding a second electronic changing table at the Fresno Chaffee Zoo.

"As special needs kids and adults get older, it's a lot harder to lift them onto the typical table, which is like a waist-height," explained Detlefsen. "So these electronic tables lower down to 12 inches off the ground, so that you can easily transfer them on there, and then raise them up for the changing and then back down again."

The general manager of Sugar Pine Railroad is excited to partner with Hannah's Helpers, so more places become accessible to everyone.

"We're definitely a community partner up here in the mountains, but also with organizations and schools throughout the state of California," said Scott McGhee. "We always look for unique opportunities to help people out."

Tickets to the event include a train ride and lunch. There will also be a raffle for several prizes.

If you're interested in buying tickets, visit hannahshelpers.org.

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