Backpack Bed™ Tropical


  • Swags for Homeless
  • Tony Clark
  • Lisa Clark


With portability – how to save the lives of homeless & disaster victims without shelter? The Backpack Bed is provided to homeless without shelter & disaster victims. Now also revolutionising the lightweight camping world.

Looks like a backpack but rolls out into a waterproof, warm and dry portable bed – also converts into sun/wind shelter. Ultralight 2.9kg. Ergonomic backpack straps, 190cm comfort mattress with silver insulation backing, 3 zipped mosquito mesh windows, hidden lockable pocket & lock. Multiple storage zones. Fire retardant. Carry 20+kg.

2012, Backpack Bed™ – Tropical model (tropic to cold – with built-in pouch including full body mosquito mesh).

Key Features


The question. What to do when homeless are without shelter?

Design focused on how would you want to be treated? When homeless – you need shelter and something to carry belongings? With this, came invention – Backpack Bed. A Backpack that rolls out into an all weather protected fire retardant Bed.

When homeless are turned away from shelters they are often given nothing. Sleeping on concrete is deadly to homeless health – studies show many suffer hypothermia, frostbite or trenchfoot.

This required a new kind of portable bed which also needed us to invent our new fabric called LiteTrex™ and mattress.


The Backpack Bed has multiple functionality in one – it is a backpack, bed, sun & wind shelter – while also a life saving device.

Easy to use without instructions – lay on the ground and simply unroll the bed from the backpack.

Optional built-in ropes allow setup to a tent like structure, or fully unzip and use ropes to create sun shelter. Multiple storage zones carry belongings. Ergonomic backpack straps ensure comfort. Loose mosquito mesh for tropical conditions.

The fabric and mattress are independently lab tested to 47 international standards for quality and safety – fire retardant, waterproof, mildew resistant, safe chemicals.


The Backpack Bed is now integrated into the programs of almost 300 welfare agencies across Australia, USA, UK, NZ & Germany. Homeless without shelter is a global problem, today many welfare agencies who identify homeless without shelter are provided a Backpack Bed. Countless homeless testify to it keeping them alive while waiting for shelter. Welfare agencies explain it is life saving tool to engage.

Disaster responders are now also using the Backpack Bed for disaster response – most recently after the tornadoes in Oklahoma in 2013.

Awarded an Australian Human Rights Award 2011 for the dignity Backpack Beds provide.


Cross-disciplinary for user comfort. Core to the Backpack Bed is our LiteTrex fabric. Light weight, mildew resistant, water tight, fire retardant, tested to not include 100+ dangerous chemicals. Creates comfort and insulating qualities not possible with other typical tent materials.

The built-in mattress also needed invention. A specially formulated crush resistant foam which is mildew resistant, fire retardant and uses safe chemicals with a silver coated insulated back.

In disasters – Backpack Bed can be dropped from planes. Add ration, medic or hygiene packs to provide a full solution for all weather conditions. 

Approved for United Nations procurement.


Awarded 6 international product design awards. Acquired by 3 international museums.

The backpack styling ensures dignity for homeless – it is critical they look normal – an average person carrying a backpack. To survive the street with dignity, modern products are needed.

Homeless recipients are surveyed – results show immediate improvements to health, sleep, comfort, dignity, safety. These impacts are critical to getting homeless back on their feet faster.

Backpack Beds set a new standard for dignified portable bedding for people without shelter – either due to homelessness or disasters.

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