At a star-studded The X Factor Childline Ball, Childline were delighted to break their previous record and raise a spectacular £1,068,631 to help the thousands of desperate young people who turn to them each day.
Kathleen Saxton, Lighthouse CEO and Founder and Chair of the Childline Ball said:
“The advertising and media industry have truly embraced Childline as a cause that matters. The support from all corners of our sector meant we broke all records of fundraising on the night and that will make a huge difference to the childhoods Childline can save, heal and protect”.
The fundraiser partnered with Simon Cowell and Syco Entertainment, the creative company behind the iconic talent show and other global formats including Britain’s Got Talent. Held at Old Billingsgate in London, the event was hosted by Stacey Solomon, who was a finalist in the sixth series of The X Factor and is a Campaigner for the NSPCC.
Speaking at the event, Stacey Solomon said: “I feel really honoured to have been asked to host the Childline Ball. I am passionate about the work of the NSPCC and Childline and feel very proud to say that the money raised will help some of the most vulnerable children in the UK, who may have nowhere else to turn.”
Guests were entertained by a number of famous voices, synonymous with the iconic talent show, including 2017 X Factor winners Rak-Su, 2012 X Factor winner James Arthur and singer songwriter Grace Davies who was runner-up in 2017. Special guests also included Martin Freeman, Olivia Williams and John Cleese, who hosted the pledge during the evening.
Just Eat was headline sponsor of the glittering event, which was attended by celebrity supporters and high profile leaders from the media and business worlds.
The Childline Ball is in its 12th year and during this time the media industry has come together to create a legacy to support Childline. Thanks to generous donations from some of the biggest media companies, last night’s total tipped to over a million pounds.
Childline founder Dame Esther Rantzen said: “We thoroughly enjoyed the spectacular evening and even more importantly, raised a fantastic £1,068,631 that we urgently need for Childline.
“At the moment we can only respond to three out of every four desperate young people who try to get in touch. We know we can save precious lives and protect them from pain. This makes events like The X Factor Childline Ball crucial if we are to support even more children in urgent need of our help. A special and heartfelt thanks to Simon, everyone at Syco Entertainment and our Ball Committee for their invaluable support. We are also incredibly grateful for the help of every single guest who has directly donated to charity.”
Guests enjoyed a champagne drinks reception, followed by a three-course dinner, with Lidl supplying the evening’s drinks and a game of Musical Bingo sponsored by Now Music. Guests also participated in an exclusive auction of ‘money can’t buy’ prizes, which included a private training session with David Haye and the chance to fill Simon Cowell’s shoes at rehearsals for an X Factor live show this autumn.
Speaking of this year’s event, Global Head of Syco Television, Nigel Hall said:
“We were delighted to have been asked to partner with Childline for such an important event. We know Childline provides a vital lifeline for so many young people every year and we are honoured to have been able to help them raise life changing funds.”
When Childline launched in October 1986 the main point of contact for those reaching out to the service was through a phone box or landline. Now 75% of children contact Childline online, by email and 1-2-1 chat. Childline became part of the NSPCC in 2006.