Local organisations give support to Hannah Whitton and her family

SPECIAL VOYAGE: Armidale Services Club CEO Scott Sullivan with Hannah's grandfather, Adrian Whitton in the charter plane. Photo: Rachel Baxter.
SPECIAL VOYAGE: Armidale Services Club CEO Scott Sullivan with Hannah's grandfather, Adrian Whitton in the charter plane. Photo: Rachel Baxter.

For months Hannah Whitton has been fighting cardiomyopathy, waiting for a heart transplant that will save her life.

The Year 5 Ben Venue Public School student and her mum have been living at a hospital in Melbourne.

To help with little Hannah’s medical costs and even flights, the team from Aspen Commercial Interiors and Armidale Services Club have been working on separate initiatives to support the family.

“When one of our guys heard about Heart for Hannah he decided to marry that up with the Dry July,” Aspen CFO Rick Porter said.

“We decided that we would pay $1 for every day we didn’t drink and $5 for every day we did drink.

“The guys all jumped on board and there was a benefit to those who did drink.

“Those who drank more paid more.”

Hannah’s grandfather Adrian Whitton said the money would help with all ongoing costs.

We want to bring Hannah home like a queen to Armidale.

Scott Sullivan

“The younger daughter has organised a program to try and give the other daughter, Kristy, a rest down in Melbourne,” he said.

“I think in the last 19 weeks she’s been home for three days.”

Mr Porter said the team at Aspen were happy to help.

“She’s [Hannah’s mum] had to give up work to become a full-time carer,” he said. “She’s also living in a place where she has no family or friends so anything that we can do is great.”

HEARTFELT HELP FOR HANNAH: Grandfather Adrian Whitton with Aspen's Steve Heaney, Craig Howard (who came up with the idea) and Rick Porter who have raised more than $3000 for Hannah and her family. Photo: Rachel Baxter.

HEARTFELT HELP FOR HANNAH: Grandfather Adrian Whitton with Aspen's Steve Heaney, Craig Howard (who came up with the idea) and Rick Porter who have raised more than $3000 for Hannah and her family. Photo: Rachel Baxter.

All up the team raised $1555 – with management matching the donations bringing the total to $3500 to the cause.

“It doesn’t cost much and there is a massive benefit out of it,” he said.

Meanwhile, Services Club CEO Scott Sullivan has set up Cross My Heart Fund with initial proceeds paying for an emergency flight for the Whitton family if required.

“We’ve set it up as a community fund and the current recipient in Hannah,” he said.

“It’s a long-term fund that we’ll set up to help the community in cases like this.” The team will contribute one per cent of sales from bar and food to the fund each day.

“If the Whitton family are called to Melbourne to be by Hannah’s side … Edwards Aviation can get the family down there in two hours,” Mr Sullivan said.

“We hope that all goes to plan for Hannah and she can come home on the plane. We want to bring Hannah home like a queen to Armidale.”