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£5,503,065 – Highest total ever raised by ITV’s Text Santa

Published: Sat 20 Dec 2014

£5,503,065 – Highest total ever raised by ITV’s Text Santa to benefit UK charities
 
Last night saw Text Santa raise the highest total ever at £5,503,065, as millions of viewers watched a night to remember on ITV.  
 
In four years of fundraising, Text Santa has now raised over £20,500,000. This year’s proceeds will directly benefit six UK-based charities as 100% of all money raised goes directly to those charities.
 
The star-studded show was packed with surprises for audience and presenters, music performances, and emotional true-life charity films.
 
From the astonished but ultimately delighted target of the ‘Takeaway’ surprise who had no idea of the roles Gordon Ramsay, Gok Wan, Little Mix, Peter Andre and Laurence Llewelyn Bowen had been playing so recently in her life; to the I’M A CELEBRITY Choir singing ‘The Twelve Critters of Christmas’ as they  accompanied McBusted band mates Harry, Tom, Danny and James taking on the jungle challenges to raise £30,000 for Text Santa;  Ant & Dec got things off to a flying start. Without a doubt the swoon moment of the evening was George Clooney as the alternative Lord of Downton to the delight of the ladies but the consternation of Robert Crawley, Lord Grantham. 
 
Not to be outdone Phillip Schofield climbed the highest point in Europe, inside the Spire of The Shard, to raise funds for the Text Santa charities and with Christine Bleakley, presented a section of the evening’s show which included footage of his breath-taking climb. Phillip was joined by Alesha Dixon, Paddy McGuinness and Keith Lemon in a special Text Santa version of The Cube which they beat to raise £100,000 for Text Santa.  To round off the entertainment TV spectacular Alesha and Paddy showed their rap skills in a Rap Battle, Paul O’Grady made an unlikely but witty Santa in a specially recorded sketch of Birds of a Feather while guests Mel B, Warwick Davis and Jonathan Ross joined the Coronation Street cast to see  Mary’s dreams come true.
 
Other items in last night’s show included Olly Murs singing History, plus the winner of this year’s X Factor Ben Haenow performing  ‘Something I Need’ for the first time since he won the show and a sneaky peak behind the scenes at ITV’s Christmas party where the stars behaved just as badly as everyone else. There were messages from celebrities and ITV shows throughout the evening including the cast of Mr Selfridge, One Direction, Ben Stiller, Ricky Gervais, Rebel Wilson, Dermot O'Leary, Jessie J and Holly Willoughby. Finishing with a roaring finale of McBusted performing ‘I Wish It Could Be Christmas Every Day.’
 
Peter Fincham, ITV Director of Television, said: "It’s been an amazing evening and I want to thank all the artists who took part and all the ITV viewers who have both donated to and got more involved with the charities as a result of Text Santa. It’s all about raising awareness of the work of these excellent causes and giving viewers an evening of top class entertainment in the process.” 
 
Text Santa 2014 broadcast six films showing the work of the chosen charities featuring Ant & Dec for Teenage Cancer Trust, Simon Cowell for Guide Dogs, HRH Prince Harry for WellChild, Brenda Blethyn for Marie Curie Cancer Care, Carey Mulligan for Alzheimer’s Society and Holly Willoughby for Together for Short Lives.
 
Major ITV programmes and stars were at the forefront of the fundraising. Text Santa raises much-needed funds and just as importantly, fosters long-term relationships with viewers, helping to create visibility for the charities beyond the televised appeal.
 
Supporting Text Santa this year are appeal partners Morrisons, stocking the Text Santa hats and headbands available across the UK in their stores, and TheHut.com who have a range of Text Santa merchandise including t-shirts, pyjamas and onesies for both adults and children. 
 
Viewers can make donations throughout the appeal via text; thanks to Text Santa partner Vodafone, by using their JustTextGiving service, which ensures 100% of your donation goes directly to Text Santa and allows you to add Gift Aid easily.  Viewers can donate £5 by texting the word SANTA5 to 70760 or donate £10 by texting SANTA10 to 70760.  You must be 16+. Please ask the bill payer’s permission.  Last date for donations is 5pm on the 9th January 2015. 
 
Text Santa character pin badges, Hollie, Rudy, Tinsel plus new this year, a white glitter snowflake, are in various outlets including Argos, Homebase, Roadchef, Hobbycraft and the food chain, Heron Foods.
 
Viewers can also donate by calling 0300 123 6060.  Standard charges may apply, please check with the operator.  100% of your donation will go to the Text Santa charities.  You must be 16+. Please ask the bill payer’s permission.  Last date for donations is 5pm on the 9th January 2015.
 
Go to itv.com, stv.tv or u.tv for terms & full charity details.  For viewers who want to donate online with our service powered by Just Giving, please visit itv.com/textsanta/donate
 
Overview of 2014 charities:
 
Teenage Cancer Trust
 
Teenage Cancer Trust is dedicated to improving the quality of life and chances of survival for the seven young people aged 13 to 24 diagnosed with cancer every day.  Teenage Cancer Trust funds and builds specialist wards in hospitals and provides dedicated staff, bringing young people together so they can be treated by teenage cancer experts in the best place for them.  Teenage Cancer Trust wants every young person with cancer to have access to this specialist support, no matter where they live.
 
Traditionally treated alongside children or elderly patients at the end of their lives, young people can feel extremely isolated, some never meeting another young person with cancer.  Being treated alongside others their own age can make a huge difference to their whole experience. 
 
Guide Dogs
 
Every hour another person in the UK loses their sight, when this happens Guide Dogs is there to make sure they don't lose their freedom as well.
 
Guide Dogs’ amazing partnerships are changing lives every day.  Through the guide dogs service, buddy dogs and My Guide volunteer sighted guides, every moment of the day Guide Dogs is enabling people with sight loss get to where they want to be in life.
 
WellChild
 
There are thousands of children and young people in the UK living with a long-term or complex health condition.
 
WellChild is the national charity working to ensure the best possible care and support for all these children and their families wherever they are and whenever they need it.
 
They aim to help children out of long-term hospital care, and into their own homes through the care and attention of their UK-wide team of WellChild Nurses who provide practical and emotional support.  They give these families the tools and support they need to deal with their child’s illness both in the hospital and back at home once they've returned.
 
Marie Curie Cancer Care
 
Marie Curie, a returning charity from 2012, provides free care to people with any terminal illness in their own homes and it's nine hospices. 
 
The Marie Curie Helper Service is provided by specially trained volunteers who offer people with any terminal illness and their carers invaluable companionship, emotional support and practical help, completely free of charge.  For up to three hours each week, people with a serious illness and their families can rely on the support of a dedicated Helper volunteer who will visit them in their home.  The Helper Service is not currently available in all areas of the UK but with the help of all the money raised from ITV Text Santa, the charity will expand this service by rolling it out to more communities across the UK. 
 
Alzheimer’s Society
 
By 2015, there will be 850,000 people living with dementia in the UK.  There is no cure but with the right support it is possible to live well with the condition.
 
Alzheimer's Society staff and volunteers provide over 2,000 services for people affected by dementia in our communities.  These range from Dementia Support Workers, providing practical advice from diagnosis onwards, to social activities like ‘Singing for the brain’, which enables people with dementia to express themselves and sing with others in a similar situation.
 
Alzheimer’s Society improves the lives of people with dementia and their carers by helping them remain part of their community for longer.
 
Together for Short Lives
 
A returning charity from 2012, Together for Short Lives is the leading charity for the UK’s 49,000 children and young people with life-threatening and life-limiting conditions and all those who help, love and care for them.  Together for Short Lives works with the UK’s 53 children’s hospice services and a range of other organisations so that every child, young person and their family has the best possible care and support whenever and wherever they need it. 
 
Children’s hospices are all charities and rely on donations to fund the round-the-clock care given to children and their families.  The money raised during Text Santa will make a huge difference to local children’s hospice services, helping them to deliver vital care and support to families across the UK. From the moment of diagnosis, for whatever life holds, Together for Short Lives helps to ensure families make the most of their precious time together.
 
Text Santa Background
 
ITV's corporate responsibility campaigns use the combined influence of our programmes, online platforms and celebrity talent, to highlight causes and make a difference. The highlight for ITV is Text Santa, which last year raised over £5.1 million for six UK charities. The charities were: Age UK, Barnardo’s, BeatBullying, British Heart Foundation, CLIC Sargent and Hospice UK. To date Text Santa has raised £15 million for 18 UK Charities since 2011. 
 
All money generously donated by ITV viewers goes directly to the six charities. ITV directly funds all operating costs and 100% of donations get passed to the charities as soon as we receive it.  So by March 2015 your money is already helping to make a big difference.
 
The chosen charities, whose work was highlighted on the ITV primetime show, reported impacts such as a 2300% increase in volunteering, 3.5 million social media impressions on the night of the appeal show, and a 476% increase in traffic on websites/social media compared to the same period last year. 
 
Text Santa 2013
 
ITV Text Santa funding enabled Age UK to run handyperson services through its network of local Age UKs. This invaluable local service assists with small repairs in the home, energy efficiency checks, draught proofing and snow clearance helping older people to keep warm and well in winter.
 
Barnardo’s gave 9,200 children throughout the UK a hot nutritious meal at their Children and Family centres and 1,200 families were provided with emergency clothes, provisions and grants helping them to get through the winter months.
2,500 young people have been trained to become BeatBullying Mentors, enabling them to help and support their peers with any bullying issues.
 
Text Santa has helped the British Heart Foundation recruit nine specialist nurses across the UK, aiming to help identify and support over 3000 people with the genetic heart condition Familial Hypercholesterolaemia (FH).
 
CLIC Sargent were able to provide around 3,000 hours of support for children, young people and their families, helping them cope with the impact of cancer treatment. Already over 60 families have been able to stay together for two weeks in one of CLIC Sargent’s Homes from Home, which is free accommodation for families to stay close to where their loved one is being treated.
 
Text Santa funded an incredible 19,761 hours of care in hospices across the UK. The money raised was split amongst Hospice UK’s 219 member hospices throughout the UK. The money has also supported Hospice UK’s work such as a Child Bereavement course, training volunteers to support children coming to terms with the loss of a loved one.
 
Text Santa 2012
 
In 2012, Age UK raised enough money for over 180,000 older people to receive support  - In the case of Anthony Nolan, the money raised by Text Santa paid for over 9,000 people to join the stem cell register. Carers UK used the funds raised from Text Santa to help 120,000 carers.  The donations raised for Together For Short Lives were distributed across 49 independent Children's Hospices in the UK ensuring families were able to make the most of their precious time together. Each hospice received enough to pay for a care assistant for a whole year.  The funds raised by Text Santa made it possible for Marie Curie Nurses to provide over 43,500 hours of hands-on care to patients.  With support from Text Santa, Whizz-Kidz transformed the lives of over 200 young disabled people by providing the most appropriate mobility equipment for their young lives, ensuring full and active childhoods and opportunities for a bright future.
 
For more information visit www.textsanta.co.uk