A St Neots deaf boy sings on a Christmas song by nineties super group Woman to Woman
Nineties superstar Beverley Craven has teamed up with deaf children's charity Auditory Verbal UK (AVUK) to release a new Christmas hit.
Christmas Day, written by Beverley, sees the Promise Me singer join forces with Judie Tzuke and Julia Fordham - known collectively as super group Woman to Woman - to perform the festive number.
Despite thinking her writing days were behind her, Beverley penned Christmas Day after being approached through a personal connection with the charity and then got her Woman to Woman bandmates onboard.
The multi-million album selling artist is best known for her 1990 hit Promise Me which shot to number 3 in the UK charts.
She said: "My partner received a phone call from a friend asking if I'd be interested in putting some words down for a Christmas song for AVUK (Auditory Verbal UK is a charity that was founded in 2003 for deaf children to provide access to auditory therapy for the first time).
"What started off as something quite small is now going to be our new song with proceeds from sales going to AVUK, and I'm really, really excited about it."
Eleven profoundly deaf children and their siblings appear singing on the chorus of the track.
The children are all currently on or have previously been on Auditory Verbal UK's specialist early intervention programme.
The charity teaches deaf children under the age of five to learn to listen and speak through highly specialised Auditory Verbal therapy.
Louis Moss, aged seven, from St Neots, Cambridgeshire is one of the children featured on the track.
Louis was diagnosed with a moderate hearing loss in both ears at 18 months old
He was fitted with hearing aids but his hearing loss degenerated due to a genetic condition and he is now being assessed for cochlear implants.
His dad Gary said: "Discovering that Louis had a hearing loss was incredibly upsetting. We felt guilty that we had not noticed the issue before, and we wanted to do everything to help him catch up with his speech, which was behind that of typical children of his age.
"Auditory Verbal therapy equipped us with the right tools and techniques to help Louis develop his auditory memory and speech. We feel it really fast-tracked his speaking and his sentence construction, and gave him a range of skills that have stayed with him as he started school. He has developed amazing levels of concentration and uses a rich vocabulary which continues to amaze us."
The AVUK children were also joined by pupils from Brushwood Junior School and Newtown Infants School based in Chesham, Buckinghamshire.
EVUK's chief executive Anita Grover added: "We are so pleased to have had the opportunity to have worked with Beverley, Judie and Julia and are incredibly grateful for their support in helping more deaf children learn to listen and speak."
A 2-track CD complete with a personal and hand-signed Christmas card (from Bev, Jude and Jules) that includes lyrics to the Christmas song as well as a bonus karaoke version will be sent to anyone who donates £10 or more to AVUK. The single is also available to download from all major outlets.
To donate visit: www.avuk.org/fundraisers/christmas-day-judie-tzuke-beverley-craven-julia-fordham.