posted on May 12th, 2021

NI businesses join movement to ditch their duvets in support of families affected by pandemic

Action for Children Northern Ireland are delighted to announce the return of their fundraising event Boycott Your Bed, for the second year running, following the successful launch last summer. On Friday 9 July, they’re inviting supporters to ditch the duvet to make a difference.

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 brand-new, lockdown-friendly event last summer to help some of the families and children who are suffering the most, whilst Byte Night wasn’t possible due to restrictions.

Continuing this summer, the event is inviting businesses and families alike to banish the blanket on Friday 9th July to help raise money to make children’s dreams of a safe and happy childhood come true. With nine children in every UK school class of 30 living in poverty, it’s time to pack the pillow and make a difference.

Action for Children Northern Ireland are delighted to be supported by many proactive businesses across the country, who are part of the Boycott Your Bed Board in Northern Ireland, including our Chairs from Version 1 and the Northern Ireland Civil Service, as well as Board members from KPMG, BT, MCS Group, Civica & Lyle English Associates.

Marguerite Clarke, Version 1 and Philip McCauley, Northern Ireland Civil Service, Chairs of the board are currently recruiting for teams and businesses to join the Northern Ireland Board and help bring hope to vulnerable UK children hit hardest by the pandemic.

Co-chair Marguerite Clarke, Business Development Manager, at Version 1 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.”

Co-chair Philip McCauley, Northern Ireland Civil Service “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. Now in its second year, it is an opportunity for families and households to get together and do something memorable, all while raising funds for Action for Children.”

Action for Children’s success lies in stepping in early. We make help available so young people don’t have to reach crisis point. We deliver 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. Now, those people need help more than ever.

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.

Co-Chairs Marguerite Clarke, Version 1, and Philip McCauley, NI Civil Service celebrate return of Boycott Your Bed (Joe Carberry)