Reading Blog blog

Techies To Sleep Rough

IT professionals are planning to swap their laptops for sleeping bags for the night in an annual event to raise money for the young homeless.

The IT workers will spend a night in Reading’s Forbury Gardens in October. It is the 12th year the event has taken place in the town and it is hoped more than 150 people will take part and raise at least £100,000 for Action for Children.

The fundraising event was founded by Reading business owner Ken Deeks, of The Amber Group. It began with just 30 IT workers sleeping out and raising £35,000. Now there are events taking place in Cambridge, London and Scotland on the same night, with over 700 people taking part.

The Thames Valley event was launched on Tuesday, June 7, in London’s Kings Wharf. Sally Hanson, chairman of the Thames Valley Byte Night board, said: “Last year, Byte Night raised £101,000 in the Thames Valley, which contributed to the £567,000 raised across the UK.

“This is a fantastic achievement we could never have envisaged 12 years ago.

“The money raised is invaluable in supporting programmes like the Mentoring Project, allowing Action for Children to extend its partnership with Chance UK. This initiative aims to reduce youth crime and anti-social behaviour by providing one-to-one mentoring for children with behavioural difficulties.”

Patrons, sponsors and sleepers include celebrities and leading figures, CIOs, systems developers, business managers, marketers and more. Big names supporting the event include Dragons Den star Duncan Bannatyne, Ben Fogle, Jenny Agutter and Ian Hislop.


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