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More Australians consider leaving a charitable gift in their Will

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More than 80 of Australia’s best-loved charities will unite in September for the 10th annual Include a Charity Week campaign, to encourage more Australians to leave a gift to charity in their Will.

Research conducted in late 2019 by Include a Charity and More Impact found that the number of Australians leaving charitable gifts rose from 7.4 per cent in 2016 to 11 per cent. The incidence of gifts in Wills is even higher among those without children: 29 per cent.

The online study of 1,510 people also found that the number of Australians considering leaving a charitable gift increased from 17 per cent in 2016 to 21 per cent, again driven by those without kids.

“We are now seeing the growth in gifts in Wills giving over the long term in Australia, which is wonderful news for all charities and not-for-profit organisations. It’s testament to the legendary generosity of Australians that they want to do something meaningful for the causes they care about while also considering the legacy they want to leave once they’re gone,” said Helen Merrick, Include a Charity campaign director.

“It also means Include a Charity supporters are communicating the value of gifts in Wills sensitively and well, effectively showcasing how vital charitable gifts can be in funding programs and services.”

She noted that gifts in Wills giving is also being driven by the willingness of Australian charities to work together for the benefit of all.

“Gifts in Wills giving is being driven not only by charities promoting their own bequest programs but their willingness to come together every year for the Include a Charity campaign to build public awareness and grow the market for all. Having a collaborative approach to gifts in Wills is critical if the sector is to succeed in normalising charitable giving and increasing it so every charity can benefit,” Helen said.

A diverse range of charities supports the Include a Charity campaign, including Asylum Seeker Resource Centre, Cerebral Palsy Alliance, Dementia Australia, Greenpeace Australia Pacific, Guide Dogs, Multiple Sclerosis Ltd, Oxfam Australia, RSPCA, The Royal Flying Doctor Service, The Salvation Army, Australian Red Cross and many more.

Merrick said there is still a lingering perception that gifts in Wills are for wealthy people only, but Include a Charity is working to debunk this myth. “Any gift, big or small, can help an organisation continue their work long into the future and make a lasting difference to their beneficiaries,” she added.

Include a Charity was created in 2011 to spark a national conversation with Australians about leaving their legacy and the form their legacies could take. It is a social change campaign of peak fundraising body, Fundraising Institute Australia.

For its 10th anniversary, the Include a Charity brand will be refreshed and launched in July and updated research released in early September about gifts in Wills, reviewing factors around COVID-19 and the current recession.

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