NI businesses encouraged to 'ditch duvets' in support of families affected by pandemic

  • Version 1’s Marguerite Clarke and Philip McCauley from the Northern Ireland Civil Service are currently recruiting for teams and businesses to partake in this year’s ‘Boycott Your Bed’ campaign.

    On Friday 9 July, the fundraising event is inviting supporters to raise money for vulnerable families and children by ‘ditching the duvet to make a difference’.   

    The event is being organised by local charity, Action for Children Northern Ireland.

    Version 1’s Belfast-based Business Development Manager, Marguerite Clarke is one of the Chairs on the Boycott Your Bed NI Board.

    She said, “Even before the pandemic, many low-income families were finding it hard to make ends meet. Now, due to job losses and rising household costs, even those who were coping are struggling.  

    “Homelessness across Northern Ireland is on the rise and I want to help young people who are homeless, or at risk of homelessness.  I feel privileged to be part of the board and I’m looking forward to making a positive contribution to the future work of the charity.”

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    Co-chair Philip McCauley, from the Northern Ireland Civil Service added: “It is a privilege to be connected with Action for Children, who work in our local community to help many children and young people have the best start in life.

    “Over the past number of years, I have taken part in Byte Night, forgoing a night of comfort to sleep under the stars whatever the weather! With the current restrictions, the collective sleepout cannot proceed, so I am delighted that Action for Children have so ably adapted to launch Boycott your Bed.”

    Boycott Your Bed takes over from the preceding Byte Night that has been widely supported by businesses across Northern Ireland for 12 years.

    With the nation in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, the charity launched a new, lockdown-friendly event last summer to help vulnerable families, as Byte Night wasn’t possible due to restrictions.

    Action for Children is a charity aimed at making help services readily available for young people so that they don’t have to reach crisis point.

    The organisation delivers a range of services in communities across Northern Ireland and have reached 15,589 children, young people and their families in the last year alone.

    The charity said that “now, those people need help more than ever.”

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    Sign your team up to be on the Northern Ireland Board for Boycott your Bed and you’ll be part of a national movement to help vulnerable children and families. Visit for more information.

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