One Direction have once again proved the power of their appeal, using it as a force for good, by encouraging fans to raise a jaw-dropping half a million pounds (£501,300) for Stand Up To Cancer, the joint national fundraising campaign from Cancer Research UK and Channel 4.

One Direction With 14-year-old Alexus From Canada
One Direction With 14-year-old Alexus From Canada

More than a third of the donations, which ranged from £3 to £1,200, were made by dedicated fans as part of a competition to win a once in a lifetime opportunity to meet the One Direction boys backstage at the final gig of their ‘Where We Are’ world tour. The remaining donations came from ticket sales from the UK and Ireland leg of their tour. Funds raised will go towards accelerating new cancer treatments to UK patients and saving more lives.

Overseen by Prizeo, the competition saw more than 10,868 entries from across the globe enter to be in with a chance to meet the band.

And on Sunday 5th October, one lucky winner, 14-year-old Alexus from Canada, flew to Miami where she met Harry, Zayn, Liam, Niall and Louis backstage. The teenager said: “I can’t believe that out of nearly 11,000 people, I was the one lucky enough to win the chance to meet One Direction. It’s a dream come true! I will never forget this day. It’s also so great that it’s raised so much for such a good cause.”

Claire Rowney, director of Stand Up To Cancer UK, said: “You can imagine how thrilled we were when One Direction chose to support Stand Up To Cancer. They come with an army of dedicated supporters, which is exactly what we need for this campaign. We want people to join us on the frontline and help beat cancer sooner. The money raised by One Direction and their fans will help bring new treatments to patients sooner and will ultimately save lives.”

In 2012, Stand Up To Cancer’s fundraising total exceeded £8m funding 12 clinical trials across the UK and this year’s aim is to do even better. The 2014 campaign is encouraging people to join the front line against cancer this autumn by fundraising, buying merchandise, joining March On Cancer and tuning in to the live TV show on Channel 4 on Friday 17th October. The culmination of activities will see stars from TV, music, film and fashion joining forces to galvanize the nation to show cancer, that it’s payback time.

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