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Stay up to date with the latest client news, industry updates and events from Recite Me

Breaking down the barriers for disabled people in football

09 Oct 2019 | news

Fans of all ages and regardless of their disability or differences should be able to come together online as a community to share their passion for football. Football is a global game and the central hub to bring everyone together is a club’s website. These websites provide visitors with everything they need to know about a club; latest news, match reports, fixtures and the ability to purchase tickets and merchandise like replica kits via the online stores. Unfortunately, it’s an issue that many disabled football supporters have to deal with, inaccessible websites. To allow everyone to engage with their favourite clubs and players, football club websites need to be inclusive by providing accessibility support. Globally there are an estimated 285 million people with a visual impairment of some kind and around 10-15% of the world’s population has dyslexia. In the UK alone, there are 1.5 million people with a learning disability and 4.2 million people who have English as a second language. This makes assistive technology all the more important to support fans online to access content in a way that works best for them. Kick It Out is English football’s equality and inclusion organisation and disability inclusion is central to their work. To support people online Kick It Out offers Recite Me. Recite Me is award-winning software that allows Kick It Out’s users to customise the website in a way that works best for them This is particularly important for disabled people or people who speak English as a second language to access vital equality information and resources. Keeley Baptista, Kick It Out’s Head of Partnerships, is delighted to be using Recite Me on the organisation’s website and believes it marks another step forward for Kick It Out’s equality work. Keeley Baptista, commented, “Recite Me is a pioneering software tool that will significantly improve the accessibility of our website. “Disability inclusion is a central part of our work and we are excited to be working more closely with the team at Recite Me going forward as we aim to break down the barriers for disabled people in football. Keeley added: “We hope that football clubs and organizations see the benefit of the tool for their customers and supporters and look to address accessibility improvements on their websites too.” Ross Linnett, Recite Me founder and CEO says, “Recite Me are proud to partner up with Kick It Out to provide online assistive technology to support people with disabilities. “The partnership will help to increase diversity and inclusion online as well as on the pitch. “Allowing people to come together to share their passion for football online is a key goal for Recite Me. By providing a wide range of accessibility tools such as the screen reader and on-demand live translation, fans of all ages, regardless of their disability or differences can engage with football news and events online hassle-free. “Our partnership will also create awareness aimed at helping clubs and other sporting organisations to develop their online presence, in order to better support fans who can often face barriers accessing online content.” 100’s of organisations already use Recite Me to make their websites more accessible for website visitors. To find out more or to book your free trial please contact the team.

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Kick It Out

09 Oct 2019 | case-study

Established in 1993 a small independent charity, the ‘Let’s Kick Racism Out of Football’ campaign was created in response to widespread calls from clubs, players and fans to tackle racism in football. Kick It Out was then established as a body in 1997 as it widened out its objectives to cover all aspects of discrimination, inequality and exclusion. Working throughout the football, educational and community sectors to challenge discrimination, encourage inclusive practices and campaign for positive change, Kick It Out is at the heart of the fight against discrimination for everyone who plays, watches or works in football.

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Buglife

09 Oct 2019 | case-study

Buglife is the only organisation in Europe devoted to the conservation of all invertebrates. Founded in the year 2000 Buglife actively works to save Britain’s rarest little animals, everything from bees to beetles and worms to woodlice. Their ultimate goal is to stop the extinction of invertebrate species.

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Morson Group

04 Oct 2019 | case-study

Morson International is one of the most respected names in recruitment, helping candidates find their perfect role and helping companies find the right people for their business since 1969. As the 3rd largest engineering recruitment company in the world (Staffing Industry Analysts (SIA) report 2017) they specialise in the supply of technical engineers and support operatives in the UK and overseas. With a business model that focuses on excellence for employees, candidates, contractors, and clients, they are actively committed to improving the lives of the communities in which they work. As leaders in the inclusivity conversation, they have taken significant steps to build on their status as a ‘disability confident employer’, reducing stigmas, attracting talent from untapped pools and creating job opportunities for all.

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Recite Me sponsor Heel and Toe foundation charity ball

03 Oct 2019 | news

Members of the Recite Me team are getting ready to put on their dickie bow ties for the St James’ Square charity ball in aid of local children’s charity, Heel and Toe. The ball will be taking place at https://www.thebiscuitfactory.com/ on Thursday 10 October 2019 with the North East’s very own Lee Ridley as the headline act for the evening. Comedian Lee, also known as the Lost Voice Guy, won Britain’s Got Talent, along with the nation’s hearts, in 2018. Heel and Toe is a North East charity that supports children with cerebral palsy and other physical disabilities. The charity receives no government funding and relies solely on donations and fundraising to provide free conductive education therapy and other subsidised therapies to over 160 children from all over the North East area. Hosts of the event, St James’ Square is a cost effective, high quality law firm providing advice for businesses and individuals across the North East. As their charity of the year, the firm aims to raise an amazing £40,000 for the Heel and Toe foundation. As well as the up and coming black-tie fundraiser they have taken part in team and client go karting and have planned a family Christmas cinema event. The firm will also contribute to help get to the overall target of £40,000. Managing Partner of St James’ Square, Paul Monaghan said: “We’re absolutely delighted to announce that not only are we hosting the firm’s first ever charity ball but that the talented Lost Voice Guy will be headlining the event. I was fortunate enough to see Lee perform his comedy a few years ago so I’m looking forward to seeing him again at our ball.” Lee said: “I’m delighted to be performing back in Newcastle later this year for the St James’ Square Charity Ball. I’ve seen some of the amazing work Heel and Toe do to help children with disabilities like mine so I’m pleased to be involved in what will be a very successful evening.” Recite Me, CEO and founder Ross Linnet commented, “We are delighted to sponsor this glamorous ball for the amazing charity Heel and Toe. The work they do to support children with cerebral palsy is amazing. Everyone involved should be very proud.”

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How technology can help young learners to shine during their GCSEs

03 Oct 2019 | news

UK secondary schools are back in full swing as another batch of young people gear up to take their (often) life-changing GCSE exams in this academic year. But there is a group of these young people who will face an extra major challenge to taking their GCSE exams: those who are coping with dyslexia. Worrying evidence shows that young people with dyslexia (or another specific learning difficulty) are half as likely to gain good GCSE passes in English and Maths as those who are unaffected by the condition. Poor diagnosis and support Nearly nine out of ten young people with dyslexia will leave school without being diagnosed. This means they receive no essential specialist support while learning or support for exams. And for those who have been diagnosed, they can be denied the support they need, or the help they receive can often be inadequate, according to the British Dyslexia Association. When you consider that over 80,000 of the young people who sat their GCSEs this year are dyslexic, it reveals a situation that needs remedying quickly. Approximately 700 million people around the world are dyslexic (between 5 – 10% of the total world population), with around 10 - 15% of the UK population having the condition. So it’s certainly not an unusual condition. But the UK secondary education system clearly must get better at both diagnosing dyslexia and supporting young learners with the condition. How technology can help Recite me is cloud-based accessibility software that was specifically designed for education. It is an innovative software solution that makes documents and applications accessible to pupils with disabilities like dyslexia with an easy to use toolbar. Whether the children in your school have dyslexia or moderate learning difficulties, the Recite Me assistive toolbar allows learners to choose how information is displayed and use the features to make content more accessible. It’s easy to use, easy to teach with and easy to maintain. It can work on a large range of learning platforms that your school or university may uses and it also updates automatically, so you’ll always have the most current version. Here’s an explanation of Recite Me’s features and how learners with disabilities like dyslexia can use them to access digital content like documents, apps and websites. Ultimately, the right technology like Recite Me can help young people to shine during their GCSEs. Do you want to make your school, college or university more inclusive? Book your appointment now for a demonstration of how Recite Me works can support you.

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What differing abilities do Recite Me assistive technology support online?

02 Oct 2019 | news

Approximately one billion people globally have a disability and they can often face barriers when visiting inaccessible websites that prevent them from taking an active part in life. The Recite Me assistive toolbar helps people with a wide range of disabilities to access websites and their content hassle-free. Recite Me’s toolbar offers a wide range of personalisation to help people with different disabilities in different ways, here is a breakdown of how it can help people with a range of disabilities. Dyslexia Recite Me helps people with dyslexia and sensory issues to read and understand website content by letting them change the look and feel of a site to suit their personal needs. A user can fully customise the background and text colour as well as the font type, sizing, spacing, and line-height. This includes the specialist Open Dyslexic font, which is designed to give letters extra weight at the bottom, so words don’t jump around the screen. To support reading, dyslexic users can choose to have text read aloud via the fully customisable screen reader. To check word definitions the page the toolbar has a built-in dictionary and thesaurus. Access auditor Keith Ferguson worked with Recite Me’s client St Johnstone FC to help the club improve its accessibility. Commenting on assistive technology being added to the Scottish Premiership football club’s website, he said: “Having this software installed is another example of the club’s commitment to continual improvements and they should be applauded for being the first in the UK. My son is dyslexic and a keen football fan so I encouraged Sean to take a look at the application. His feedback was very positive, advising ‘It is a very clever system. The ‘text to speech’ function is excellent. I really liked the ability to change the font to whatever was easiest for me to read and being able to change the background colour made a huge difference visually, plus I had the assistance of the ruler which was an added tool I wasn’t expecting.” Visual Impairments People with visual impairments need to have the ability to customise a website in order to view content in a way that works best for them. To aid viewing website content visitors can use Recite Me assistive toolbar styling features to customise a website’s background colour and the text (font style, size and colour). People can also use the text-only and margin features to reposition text on a screen with no styling distraction. Users can also opt to have the text read aloud. Martin Lea, Recite Me Sales Executive, has a visual impairment. He said: “I became visually impaired in my mid-forties having acquired a condition that permanently damaged the macular in my right. The range of styling features on the Recite Me assistive toolbar massively support my content reading. Mostly the font size increase button and the colour, contrast, and font options. “All websites have their own styles but there seems to be a trend of using dark grey text on a light grey background which can be frustrating. Recite allows me to apply 'MY' preferred colours and font, to facilitate reading content. Reading paragraphs with essentially just my left eye means it's easy to lose my place in a long paragraph. The ruler keeps me in the right place on-page.” Autism Children and adults with autism can face distinct challenges when reading. Recite Me can support website visitors with a totally customisable screen reader, that allows text to be read out aloud at different speeds, and in different languages, with either a male or female voice. Recite Me provides a totally customisable solution to select any text and background colour combination to support individuals who need specific colours and fonts to aid their reading. ADHD To support people with ADHD and reading content online the Recite Me toolbar offers a screen mask or a ruler allowing them to focus and stop being distracted by other content on the page. Not one case of ADHD is the same, so other users find the fully customisable styling features very useful to help their sensory issues. Dyspraxia To support dyspraxia the Recite Me toolbar offers a totally customisable screen reader. Website visitors can have content read aloud in over 35 different languages and they can control the speed at which the text is readout. To support reading a user can customise the text font, colour, sizing, and spacing. Daniel Cobb specialises in Disability Inclusion and he has dyspraxia. He said of Recite Me being added to our recruitment client Rullion’s website: “This is very powerful for someone like me. I am dyspraxic and have sensory processing difficulties. The process of job hunting is mentally very draining for most job hunters but being dyspraxic makes it significantly worse. “To be able to use the accessibility tools on the website ensures I can process the information with greater efficiency and therefore reduce the visual fatigue I experience from using websites. Also knowing that Rullion as a recruiter is disability confident increases my confidence, they will understand my requirements and means I am likely to disclose with confidence. It is so important for all recruiters to be inclusive and be disability confident like Rullion as it means a large pool of relatively untapped potential can be accessed.” Epilepsy For extreme epilepsy Recite Me can support people online by using the “text only” feature to strip away any media or graphics that may cause a seizure. A user can also change the style of a website page if different colours affect their epilepsy. Hyperlexia Recite Me provides a fully integrated dictionary and thesaurus. People with hyperlexia will be able to read words but they may not understand their meanings. Having a built-in dictionary allows people to understand wording without leaving the website. Colour blindness Colour blindness (colour vision deficiency, or CVD) affects approximately one in twelve men (8%) and 1 in 200 women globally. In order to avoid any colour clashes (e.g red and green) Recite Me provides a totally customisable solution to select any background and text colour combination to support individuals who need specific colours and fonts to aid their reading. Martin Robertson, Sales Manager Recite Me, has colour blindness. He said: “As one of the #1in12 men with CVD (Colour Vision Deficiency), more commonly known as colour blindness, one of my biggest frustrations is colour contrast ratios on websites not being sufficiently high to enable me to read the content. It’s most prevalent in footers where the brand colour is black, blue or grey and then the links are red.” Mobility and Physical Impairments Recite Me can help people with a range of physical impairments that affect mobility such as multiple sclerosis (MS), which also affects people’s vision, and motor neurone disease (MND). Recite Me allows people with these conditions to access large passages of text on web pages with minimum effort (and scrolling on pages) by opting for Recite Me to read the text aloud. 100’s of organisations already use Recite Me to make their websites more accessible and inclusive…call 0191 4328092 to find out more or book your free trial now.

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Ross Linnett Interview on BBC Radio Newcastle

25 Sep 2019 | news

This past Monday Recite Me CEO Ross Linnett stopped by BBC Radio Newcastle to have a chat with Jonathan Miles. During the interview Ross talked about Dyslexia, from his days at school, being diagnosed at University, to starting a business to help aid people in the same position as him. You can listen to the interview by clicking the links below Listen to Part 1 here Listen to Part 2 here

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Western Sussex Hospitals

24 Sep 2019 | case-study

Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust serves a population of around 450,000 people across a catchment area covering most of West Sussex. The Trust runs three hospitals: St.Richard’s Hospital in Chichester, Southlands Hospital in Shoreham-by-Sea and Worthing Hospital in the centre of Worthing.

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Sir Robert McAlpine first construction company offering enhanced online accessibility

23 Sep 2019 | news

Sir Robert McAlpine has partnered up with Recite Me to provide barrier-free access to their websites for people with a range of accessibility issues, including visual impairments, dyslexia, colour blindness and other forms of neurodiversity, as well as those who speak English as a second language. Sir Robert McAlpine is a family-owned tier one building and civil engineering company which was established in 1869. They have worked on some of Britain’s most iconic buildings and projects, including the Olympic Stadium, Elizabeth Tower, O2 Arena, Emirates Stadium, and the Eden Project. With the introduction of Recite Me assistive technology, Sir Robert McAlpine is at the forefront of inclusivity online in the construction industry. In line with its commitment to lead on inclusion and inspire industry-wide change, Sir Robert McAlpine is fully inclusive to support all visitors on their main website and talented, diverse and skilled individuals on their career pages. Nadeem Mirza, Head of Resourcing & Talent Acquisition at Sir Robert McAlpine commented, "Our ambition, as we proudly build Britain’s future heritage, is to be the best place to work and the best builder in the UK. That means having a company that represents the people of Britain, without exception. I am proud to deliver this inclusive project as it represents the values of, not only the business but my own dedication to ensuring we hire great talent from diverse backgrounds and abilities." To support website visitors and potential candidates looking for a career at Sir Robert McAlpine, the Recite Me assistive toolbar allows people to customise their website in a way that works best for them. This easy to use, award-winning software includes text to speech functionality, fully customisable styling features, reading aids and a translation tool with over 100 languages, including 35 text to speech voices and many other features. Recite Me Founder and CEO Ross Linnett said: “The construction industry is moving in the right direction with their actions towards diversity and inclusion. It is now great to see that tier one construction contractor Sir Robert McAlpine is taking this to the next level with the introduction of assistive technology. “We look forward to seeing more construction companies make this positive change online, using web accessibility software to ensure they are fully supporting customers to access content in a way that works best for them.”

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Celebrating National Inclusion Week 2019

23 Sep 2019 | news

As a Disability Confident Employer, Recite Me is once again proud to celebrate National Inclusion Week this week (23 – 29 September). National Inclusion Week raises awareness of inclusion in the workplace and the importance of having a diverse workforce, including people with disabilities. It is a campaign owned and managed by Inclusive Employers, the UK's first and leading membership organisation for employers looking to build inclusive workplaces. National Inclusion Week 2019 features a series of physical and online events ranging from a webinar on neurodiversity to an event on best practice sharing for inclusion and diversity professionals. Sharing workplace inclusion successes We are proud to say that Inclusive Employers is a client of ours, with the Recite Me assistive toolbar on its website. And we are proud to celebrate National Inclusion Week. The theme for National Inclusion Week 2019 is 'Everyday Inclusion: Celebrate and Inspire'. So we are keen to share the experience of how our clients are making their workplaces more accessible and inclusive. Supporting people with accessibility and language needs Organisations from both the public and private sector use Recite Me to help customers with different needs access their websites. They also use Recite Me to ensure internal systems like intranets and learning platforms are accessible and inclusive for their staff. Recite Me’s assistive toolbar supports a diverse range of staff in the workplace, including people with disabilities and those who don’t speak English as their first language. Organisations that use Recite Me internally include Tesco Bank, University of Winchester, and Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. Making Western Sussex Hospitals digitally accessible Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust uses Recite Me on both its external public facing website and its intranet site called StaffNet, which receives 7,500 unique page views every day. Recite Me allows people with a wide range of disabilities and impairments, from dyslexia to sight loss and colour blindness, to easily access intranet sites, websites and web content. It can also translate web content into over 100 different languages to support people who don’t speak English as their first language. Nikki Kriel, Organisational Development Manager for Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said: “Western Sussex Hospitals started using Recite Me in April 2019 offering staff and patients an improved access to the trust’s websites. “As an inclusive employer Recite Me has been extremely popular in a number of ways offering users the opportunity to enlarge, translate or read aloud the Trust’s website.” Jennie Shore, HR Director for Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, added: “Recite Me is an extremely useful tool which helps us to be a more inclusive organisation. “We hope staff find it very useful and that more of our patients and the public can enjoy improved access to our website.”

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Sir Robert McAlpine

23 Sep 2019 | case-study

Sir Robert McAlpine is a family-owned tier one building and civil engineering company which was established in 1869. They have worked on some of Britain’s most iconic buildings and projects, including the Olympic Stadium, Elizabeth Tower, O2 Arena, Emirates Stadium, and the Eden Project.

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Is your e-learning platform mobile ready?

21 Sep 2019 | news

Schools, colleges and higher education providers across the UK now use a variety of different e-learning platforms to support their pupils and students. They can allow students to access a range of learning materials (e.g. pdf’s, videos, presentations) and submit assignments, in an inclusive and accessible learning environment. Higher education providers should have accessible and mobile ready e-learning platforms The Disabled Student Sector Leadership Group (DSSLG) published a report in January about how higher education providers can ensure they are equipped to support disabled students. The report says that small changes can make a big difference to inclusive learning and that all teaching materials should be available to students on an accessible e-learning platform: “…there are some very simple changes that can make a significant difference to student outcomes around inclusive practice: “[These include] Housing all teaching materials on the virtual learning environment in such a way that students can access them when they are needed, before or after formal teaching.” In short, up-to-date information should be accessible no matter what device your students are using or what language they speak, but are you sure that your e-learning platform is mobile ready? It simply MUST be! Just look at how your students use mobile devices in 2017. Smartphones are vital for your students The OFCOM Communications Market Report 2017 that was published in August shows that your students use mobile devices to access the internet from anywhere to suit their needs. And most of them consider their smartphones as their number one device to access the internet. The report says: “For most people, mobile devices are their most important device for accessing the internet. “Consistent with high take-up, more than four in ten (42%) UK internet users, including nearly two-thirds of 16-34 year olds and 44% of 35-54s, regard their smartphones as their most important device for accessing the internet.” (pp 164) This data is consistent with other figures published by OFCOM in its Access and Inclusion in 2016 report, which was released in March. The report shows that: 93% of 16 – 24 year olds use a smartphone for personal use – this is a whopping 20% greater than the UK average (73%) for the total population 97% of 16 – 24 year olds use the internet anywhere – this is a 10% more than the UK average (87%) for the total population These figures for smart phone use show just how important they are for young people. This includes the one in in five people in the UK have some form of disability. Recite Me can make your site mobile ready and accessible to everyone Recite Me is a cloud-based accessibility software programme that will let all your students access your website and e-learning platform anytime, anywhere, on any mobile device or PC. It is great for people with learning difficulties like dyslexia or disabilities such as full or partial sight-loss, or loss of mobility through wide-ranging health conditions. For example, it offers students the option to have text from any website read-aloud to them. It also gives students the option of downloading and saving any written web content as an MP3 file, which means they can listen to it on any mobile device or PC, where and when they want to. Recite Me also has a number of other great features that help students with disabilities and learning difficulties like dyslexia. Book your free trial now! If you want to ensure you’re supporting your students by making your academic web content mobile ready and accessible to everyone book a free trial of Recite Me for your university now. Do you want to ensure you’re supporting your students by making your academic web content mobile ready and accessible to everyone? Book a free trial of Recite Me for your university now.

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How to overcome digital exclusion

18 Sep 2019 | news

Why doesn’t one in five adults with disabilities in the UK (22%) use the internet? It’s an alarming number. The same goes for asking why more than half (53%) of adults aged 75 years and over in the UK have not used the internet recently? In today’s world, many of us do everything we can online, from shopping to booking holidays and paying bills. So why can’t people with disabilities and older people enjoy the same benefits? It’s because of digital exclusion. Too many inaccessible websites Evidence from the public and private sectors shows that inaccessible websites are a major barrier that prevents people with disabilities (including older people, who are more likely to have acquired a disability) using the internet. The Click-Away Pound Survey found more than six million people with disabilities in the UK had difficulty using online shops and services. 71% of those people simply left a site that they found hard to use; 4.2 million lost customers. For 81% of this group, ease of use was more important than price. Overall, £11.75 billion was spent by consumers in 2016 at websites that were easier to use. Whilst a web accessibility study found that only 60% of UK local authority websites’ home pages are accessible to people with disabilities. The Web should work for everyone Being able to access the internet is a legal right of people with disabilities, as covered in the Equality Act 2010. And when websites, apps and digital content are correctly designed they are accessible for everyone, as noted by Sir Tim Berners-Lee, the inventor of the World Wide Web: “The Web is fundamentally designed to work for all people, whatever their hardware, software, language, location, or ability…However, when web sites, applications, technologies, or tools are badly designed, they can create barriers that exclude people from using the Web.” However, things are set to change in the public sector with the introduction of The Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No.2) Accessibility Regulations 2018. Follow the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) The first deadline of these regulations was September 23rd 2019 and the laws set new website and mobile app accessibility standards that public sector bodies must now follow. In order to comply, new public sector websites and mobile apps (published on or after the regulations came into force in September 2018) must follow the principles of Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.1 accessibility Level AA standards by 23 September 2019. They are a set of guidelines to follow produced by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) to make a website or mobile app accessible to all users. The guidelines should also be followed by private sector organisations to ensure their websites are accessible. To follow the guidelines and make your website accessible you’ll need to take steps like using alt text tags for all images and video, plus using high contrast between the text and background. Accessible websites open up new markets You should also consider adding web accessibility software like Recite Me. Recite Me’s assistive toolbar allows people with a wide range of disabilities and impairments, from dyslexia to sight loss and colour blindness, to easily access websites and web content. Whilst it is the right thing to do, adding accessibility software will also improve the overall user experience of your website. And it will open up your business to a wider audience by providing assistive tools for your visitors to engage and ultimately convert online. 100’s of organisations already use Recite Me to make their websites more accessible and inclusive…call 0191 4328092 to find out more or book your free trial now.

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The Prince's Trust

16 Sep 2019 | case-study

The Prince's Trust is a charity that was founded in 1976 by Charles, Prince of Wales to help vulnerable young people get their lives on track. It supports 11 to 30-year-olds who are unemployed and those struggling at school and at risk of exclusion.

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