Exciting news! Shooting Star Chase has the X Factor once more, as the charity is joint beneficiary of the show’s single, along with children’s hospice umbrella organisation, Together for Short Lives, for a second year.

The charity single, When Christmas Comes Around, has been written by Ed Sheeran and is sung by The X Factor winner, Matt Terry – and can be downloaded via iTunes, Spotify, Amazon, Google Play and Apple Music. Shooting Star Chase adn Together for Short Live will receive 100% of profits from the sale of each download.

Shooting Star Chase supported child, Ruby, featured in the charity single appeal film, which aired on The X Factor semi-final show on 4 December. 12-year-old Ruby has a number of complex life-limiting conditions relating to her stomach, and is frequently hospitalised and in constant pain.  Her family uses Shooting Star Chase’s Hospice at Home service for support, Ruby has received complimentary therapy and she has day visits at Christopher’s, our Guildford-based hospice.

Ruby visited The X Factor studios with her mum, dad and sister during rehearsals last week and met the judges and contestants. Ruby’s mum, Nicki, and Dad, Vic, explain how much the experience meant to their family: “We’ve had some amazing opportunities with Shooting Star Chase – we’ve been to tea at Selfridges and The Dorchester – and now we’ve been behind the scenes at The X Factor!” said Nicki.

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“It was so special,” adds Vic. “When we came out Ruby said it was the best day she’s ever had; basically the best day of her life. It’s what Christmas in your wildest dreams for a 12-year-old would look like!” Nicki adds, “For me as a mum it was amazing to see her there. It was just escapism, which is so important for families like ours – it was a chance to live in a different bubble for a while, which is so beneficial. We think it’s fantastic The X Factor are supporting Shooting Star Chase like this. Ruby says Simon Cowell is a lovely man!”

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Shooting Star Chase Vice President, Simon Cowell, says, “Once again, I am thrilled that the proceeds from The X Factor 2016 charity single will be going to Shooting Star Chase and Together for Short Lives. The main reason for doing this is that these charities help families and kids through incredibly difficult times. As always, we hugely appreciate the incredible support from the public.”

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The single will be the ninth charity release from The X Factor and the fifth winner’s single. Profits were split equally between Shooting Star Chase and Together For Short Lives for Louisa Johnson’s ‘Forever Young’ in 2015 and both charities also benefitted from Ben Haenow’s number 1 hit release ‘Something I Need’, Sam Bailey’s ‘Skyscraper’ and James Arthur’s million-selling release ‘Impossible’ in 2012. In 2011 the finalists recorded the cover for the Rose Royce classic ‘Wishing On A Star’. Before that came David Bowie’s ‘Heroes’ (2010), Michael Jackson’s ‘You Are Not Alone’ (2009) which supported Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity and ‘Hero’ (2008) for Help For Heroes charity.

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David Burland, Chief Executive at Shooting Star Chase, said: “Everyone at Shooting Star Chase is delighted to be announced as joint beneficiaries of the X Factor charity single. Families who have a child with a life-limiting condition have to cope with circumstances very few of us ever have to imagine. Shooting Star Chase exists to make every moment count for these families, not just with highly skilled medical care but also creating special memories that will last forever. It costs £10 million every year to provide that vital care at our hospices and in families’ homes across London and Surrey. Fundraising in today’s economic climate is proving increasingly difficult, so we are extremely grateful to our friends at X Factor. Their support is a lovely Christmas present to us, and I would encourage everyone to buy the charity single and help give sick children, and their families, a Christmas to remember.”

Find out more about Shooting Star Chase’s care and the work The X Factor charity single will help fund.