It is used to the roar of thousands of football fans, but it will be the sound of snoring filling Elland Road stadium this October, as supporters of a children’s charity aim to raise £2m with a sponsored sleep out.
The Leeds United ground will host Action for Children’s Byte Night, which is supported by businesses across the region, and employees are being urged to give up their beds for the night and join in.
Byte Night is the country’s largest sleep out, with 12 simultaneous events taking place across the UK, featuring more than 1,800 sleepy fundraisers.
This year is the first time an event has been held in Yorkshire, and all funds raised will go towards the charity’s work helping vulnerable and disadvantaged children.
Steve Rake, director at Harvey Nash and chair of the Byte Night Yorkshire board, said: “Spending the night braving the cold is a challenge. But in the morning, everyone taking part will be able to go home, take a shower and sleep in a comfortable bed. Sadly, there are too many vulnerable young people across Yorkshire for whom this is simply not possible.
“Byte Night has raised millions in support of vulnerable children and young people since its launch in 1998 and we’re inviting businesses big and small in Yorkshire to raise the bar even higher in our first ever sleep-out, as we’re an incredibly compassionate region.
“This is not only a unique professional networking opportunity but a chance to support some of the young people in our society who need it most. One night really does make a lifetime’s difference.”
Companies including Harvey Nash, Morrisons, ASDA, Altrad, Answer Digital, Civica, Burberry, Concorde Technology Group, DLA Piper, EY, FDM Group, Hays, KCOM, Kings Secure Technologies, Leeds City Council, Mastek, Mills & Reeve LLP, Minister Law, naughtone, Premier Farnell, Red Kite Projects Limited, Software Cloud Limited, Transition Partners, Turner & Townsend and University of Hull are already signed up to sleep out at Byte Night Yorkshire.
John Egan, director of children’s services at Action for Children, adds: “It’s heart-breaking that over 123, 000 children in this country are suffering the trauma of homelessness.
“Family breakdown, mental health issues and abuse in the home are just a few of the reasons which lead to young people to lose the roof over their heads. Every child should have a safe and loving home, but sadly too many are in desperate situations and need our help.
“As early help funding from central government continues to diminish, events like Byte Night are even more vital to help our frontline services to ensure young people don’t slip through the net and end up with nowhere to go.”
Byte Night takes place on Friday October 5.
To find out more visit bytenight.org.uk or contact firstname.lastname@example.org.