People of colour more likely to have considered charity gifts in wills, survey finds

21 Feb 2024 News

By Charlize D/Adobe

People of colour are more likely than individuals from white ethnic backgrounds to have considered donating to charities in their will, according to new research.

In response to a survey of 1,000 people with a parent aged 60 or over, 74% said they had not thought about leaving a gift to charity in their will.

Only 7% said they had formalised leaving a gift to charity in their will while 16% had thought about doing so but had made no formal provisions.

More respondents from non-white ethnic backgrounds (32%) had considered charitable bequests compared to their white counterparts (22%).

Respondents with higher incomes were more inclined to have made charitable donations in their wills, with 16% of those earning more than £75,000 a year having done so compared with 4% of those earning £15,000 or less.

Childless adults (26%) were more likely to have thought about leaving a gift to charity in their will compared to parents (22%), the research found.

‘Important that legacy campaigns are inclusive’

Lucinda Frostick, director of Remember A Charity, said: “This survey adds to the bank of evidence showing that people who are child-free are most likely to leave a gift in their will, and that bodes well for charities in relation to the baby boomer generation, which features a high proportion and a high volume of child-free and charitably minded supporters. 

“With greater legacy consideration amongst non-white ethnic groups, this also reinforces just how important it is that legacy campaigns are not only inspiring, but inclusive and accessible.

“While it’s crucial to understand where the propensity lies for legacy giving, it’s important to recognise too that there is no one size fits all approach to legacy marketing.

“Fundraisers need to consider their own supporter profile and think carefully about the messaging, channels and overarching approach that is most likely to engage and inspire them into taking action and leaving a gift in their will.”

The research was conducted by Censuswide on behalf of law firms Shakespeare Martineau and Mayo Wynne Baxter.

Gaynor Lanceley, head of legacy administration at Shakespeare Martineau, said: “While the majority of people have not thought about leaving a gift to charity in their will, the proportion of individuals considering such provisions suggests there is a clear appetite in doing so.

“However, there remains a significant gap between intention and action – underscoring the importance of raising awareness about legacy giving and its benefits.”

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