Refuge launches new and improved website
Survivors and supporters have provided valuable insight into the design of the redeveloped website to ensure it best meets their needs. The new look website makes it easier for users to quickly get the information they need, when they need it and is fully accessible, easy to navigate and mobile friendly.
Refuge’s website is accessed by women-in-crisis predominately using mobile devices who are looking for instant support and access to domestic abuse services, so the website has been re-designed with this in mind, making it easier to navigate and find relevant content quickly.
The website also has a “quick escape” button which is always visible at the bottom of the screen for safety and does not show up in browser’s history. This is vital as women experiencing domestic abuse often experience tech abuse and may have their devices monitored by their perpetrator.
Refuge also recognises that the website is a vital information source so has created an information hub area on the site both to validate experiences of women-in-crisis and survivors but also to encourage public education on domestic abuse. Supporters can stay up to date with charity fundraisers and events through a new search feature for events, which uses filters based on type and location to find a relevant event near them.
Refuge partnered with agency Reason Digital on the revamp who provided valuable expertise and adopted a trauma-informed approach to both research and design. The new website features more white space to reduce cognitive load, has an improved search function making it easier to access the right information quickly and easily and has no images on pages aimed at supporting women-in-crisis so that it is quick to load and access.
Gabi Field, Director of Fundraising and Communications at Refuge, said:
“Refuge is thrilled to be launching our new website, which we hope will help more women feel able to access the information and support they need. The website was created following consultation with supporters, survivors and design experts to ensure it is as user-friendly and accessible as possible. Our new website will make it quicker and easier for women in crisis to find the help and information they need and for people to learn more about domestic abuse and get involved in supporting Refuge on our mission to end domestic abuse.”
Jane Murison, Design & UX Director at Reason Digital, said:
“We had the privilege to interview domestic abuse survivors at the start of our work on the new Refuge site and had their voices represented throughout our design process, so we were able to build a design with them and their stories in mind. We prioritised the needs of survivors – the site has extremely clear navigation, concise language and simple imagery, all to meet the situational access needs of someone who might be in crisis. This serves the needs of not only survivors, but every supporter coming to the Refuge site.”
Refuge supports thousands of women and children on any given day, and runs the National Domestic Abuse Helpline, which is the gateway to accessing specialist support across the country. More than one in four women in England and Wales experiences domestic abuse at some point in their lifetime, and two women a week are killed by a current or former partner.
Please signpost to Refuge’s National Domestic Abuse Helpline 0808 2000 247, available 24 hours a day 7 days a week for free, confidential specialist support. Or visit www.nationaldahelpline.org.uk to fill in a webform and request a safe time to be contacted or to access live chat (live chat available 3pm-10pm, Monday to Friday). For support with tech abuse visit refugetechsafety.org.