Join Sally for a very bad night’s sleep

Sally Hanson wants you to take part in Byte Night

On Friday, October 3 I will spend the night sleeping rough in Reading’s Forbury Gardens and I want you to join me.

I will be joined by around 200 business and technology leaders from across the region for Byte Night Thames Valley, an annual fundraiser which supports youth homelessness services run by charity Action for Children.

We still need teams from across the region to join us in this challenge, and help raise vital funds to protect the most vulnerable children and young people living in this country.

I have slept out ten times now, but I don’t know if I will ever get used to the cold, or how dark it can get.

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But however tough – and wet, and windy – Byte Night gets, as I climb into my sleeping bag I know it’s only a matter of hours until I can return home, turn on the heating, make myself a meal, and relax in a real bed.

For the 80,000 homeless children and young people living in the UK, this simply isn’t the case.

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Well over a thousand people from across the UK will sleep out on Byte Night across eight locations because they believe that all children and young people should have a safe place to call home – they shouldn’t be sofa surfing, they shouldn’t be in B&Bs, and they certainly shouldn’t be on the streets.

Last year we raised over £1million – and this year we’re determined to beat that total. I have been lucky enough to visit some of Action for Children’s services, and I know that the money raised makes a huge difference.

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It provides accommodation for children and young people who have nowhere else to go, food parcels and electricity cards for those who have been forced to live alone at an early age, and mediation to help deal with problems and keep families together.

Some of the biggest companies in the UK take part in Byte Night, making it a great networking opportunity, as well as a unique way to support young people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness. Local teams from Barclays, Genpact, Microsoft, Dell, and EY have already signed up to take part in Byte Night Thames Valley.

This year’s event is just over a month away, but there is still time to sign up and have a very bad night’s sleep for a very good cause.

To register a team, please visit

Sally Hanson is the marketing communications director at SAS [Slough] and the co-chair of the Thames Valley Byte Night board.