Remember A Charity launch new advertising campaign

31 March 2009

Remember A Charity will launch a new advertising campaign on March 31 to change attitudes to charitable gifts in wills.

The campaign – launched by Remember A Charity, a consortium of over 140 UK charities – breaks as the latest data shows that legacy income fell by £66 million in the last quarter of 2008.

Income from charitable gifts left when writing a will provides the economic foundations of the charity sector and raises over £1.9 billion every year – 25 times the sum raised by Comic Relief this month. Without this income, the vital support, services and research projects that charities deliver simply would not happen.

The advertising campaign, to be aired on several channels including Channel 4, More 4, GOLD, ITV3 and UK Drama, is part of a wider campaign to ‘normalise’ leaving a legacy gift by addressing a number of the current barriers. In particular, the new TV adverts address the perception that such a gift cannot fit comfortably with looking after loved ones and family.

Currently just 7% of us leave a gift to charity in our will, if this figure increased to just 11% it would raise an additional £1 billion for charities. The research is encouraging: when asked, 35% of people say they are happy to give a small percentage of their will as a gift to a charity after they have looked after their family.

Stephen George, Chair of Remember A Charity said: “Many people simply don’t realise they can make a gift to their favourite charities in this way. The truth is that after looking after family and friends first, a small share of whatever is left can make a real difference to charities and the invaluable work they do.

“The legacy income that charities receive is under serious pressure as the value of house prices and shares tumble. This trend has already cost the sector £66 million in Q4 last year and is expected to fall a further £200m in 2009, making it even more important to change existing attitudes and beliefs.