Local charities winning legacy battle

10 October 2011

Local charities like wildlife trusts, hospices and ambulance trusts are beating national brands when it comes to landing lucrative legacies, new research published today (Monday 10 October) reveals.

The findings of the annual Legacy Market Snapshot, launched at the Institute of Fundraising’s Legacy Fundraising conference, show that local charities are enjoying a legacy growth rate more than double that of their national competitors.

Meg Abdy, Director of Legacy Foresight who compiled the research, says: “Our analysis shows that local charities are enjoying exceptional growth when it comes to legacies, despite a tough economic climate and a falling death rate.

“In fact local organisations are enjoying an average legacy growth rate of 5.4% pa compared to national charities who are seeing an average growth rate of just 2.5% pa. It would seem that today’s legators are looking for tangibility, transparency and control – who better than local charities to satisfy these needs?”

Delegates at today’s conference, held at Plaisterer’s Hall in the City of London, will also hear how the arts and education sectors are set to become bigger players in the £1.98 billion legacy fundraising market.

Rob Cope, Director of Remember A Charity, the IoF-hosted campaign committed to encouraging more people to leave a charitable gift in their will, explains: “Up until now legacy fundraising has been a pretty small part of the marketing efforts of arts and education organisations. However with bodies across the country facing tough public funding cuts every fundraising method is now being used to its maximum potential.

“Because universities, theatres and other arts organisations often have excellent relationships with well-heeled supporters we’d expect them to play an ever growing part in the legacy fundraising arena.”

Although the legacy fundraising market is worth four times more than in 1990 just 7% of people die with a gift to charity in their will.

Rob Cope adds: “A small change in behaviour when it comes to legacies could have a massive impact for charities and their beneficiaries – if we could persuade an extra 4% of people to leave a charitable gift in their will then an extra £1 billion a year would find its way to good causes.”