Matt Baker urging Sunderland to get behind Pudsey for Children in Need

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MATT Baker is calling on Wearsiders to get behind Pudsey and start fund-raising for BBC Children in Need.

The broadcaster has joined Sir Terry Wogan, Gary Barlow, Radio 1 DJ Nick Grimshaw, fellow One Show presenter Alex Jones and bands JLS and Union J to launch this year’s campaign.

Cash raised by the BBC charity will help raise millions for disadvantaged children and young people in the UK.

The fund’s leaders say there are a number of fun ways people can support the cause.

Swapping using work and school attire in favour of pyjamas, cake sales and dance events are among those which have been suggested.

For budding athletes, Matt – who was raised in Easington Village – is calling on people to dust off their running gear and get involved in a sponsored race.

He said: “Join us in fund-raising for BBC Children in Need to help disadvantaged children and young people across the UK. What are you waiting for?”

BBC Children in Need’s life president Sir Terry Wogan added: “Another year older and my childhood is almost ancient history, though memories from back then are very fond ones.

“I was lucky – mine was a happy childhood – but for many children in the UK, this isn’t the case, which is why the BBC started BBC Children in Need.

“Get involved. Go on, you know you want to. Together we can make 2013 our greatest year ever.”

This year’s main event will be held on Friday, November 15.

The official pack is available from bbc.co.uk/Pudsey and is full of fund-raising ideas and games to help people with their efforts

So far, nearly £690million has been raised by Children in Need.