One of the recommendations from the Growing Giving Parliamentary Inquiry’s ‘Creating an Age of Giving’ report calls for will makers to inform people making a will that they are able to use it to leave a gift in your will in support of a charity. Leaving a legacy is a great way for people to give a lasting gift in support of a cause that they care passionately about, and can also help to encourage people to form a long-term relationship with a charity which in itself can lead to regular donations and volunteering.
Of course, many will makers already make their clients aware of legacy giving, and the impact of prompting in this manner is starting to become clearly visible. Remember A Charity - the organisation that campaigns for more people to leave a legacy in support of a charity in their will – have recently published their 2014 Impact Report, which highlights the progress being made in this area.
The effectiveness of prompting by a will maker has been proven by research carried out by CAF and Remember A Charity in partnership with the Cabinet Office’s Behavioural Insights Team, with a simple prompt trebling the amount of people choosing to leave a legacy. This shows that impact that the application of ‘nudge theory’ principles can have, and extending the use of prompting even further can only further increase support for the sector.
Evidence shows that the legacy market is growing. In 2000, just over 5% of people left a gift to a charity in their will, a figure increasing to 7.3% in 2013. Additionally, the number of people claiming to have left a charitable gift in their will is now at the highest level to date. Research by Smee & Ford estimates that converting just another 1% of wills to include a legacy could raise an additional £69m each year for charities across the UK.
And the number of will writers making their clients aware of the possibility of supporting a charity in this way is on the increase too. In the past four years, the percentage of will writers who ‘always or sometimes’ talk to clients about to their clients about leaving a legacy has increased by 12%, with 65% now explaining legacy giving to will makers on a regular basis.
The increased emphasis on legacy giving is having an impact on public awareness of supporting charities in this way. Remember A Charity’s advertising campaign last year used a range of ways to communicate the benefits of legacy giving, Research carried out by nfpSynergy has discovered that only 11% of people in the UK have never heard about legacy giving compared to 21% in 2010, showing that it really is on the way to becoming entrenched.
Over the coming months CAF will be working to implement a number of the recommendations from the Growing Giving Parliamentary Inquiry, and we will work closely with Remember A Charity to increase the amount of people informed about the value of legacy giving. Remember A Charity Week is already a great opportunity that really focuses attention on the value of legacy giving, but we want to ensure it is at the forefront of will makers’ minds throughout the year.
To find out more about our work in this area, please don’t hesitate to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. And don’t forget to check out the brilliant Remember A Charity’s website to learn a little more about why legacy giving matters and how you can make your commitment to a charity live forever.
Posted 29 January 2015