New research from Remember A Charity reveals changing attitudes
to legacy giving.
Eight nine per cent of survey respondents said that they
would be proud and pleased to see their parents leave a
gift to charity in their will, after they have looked after
their family and friends. Just 7% outlined that they would
see such a decision as ‘eccentric’.
The research was carried out to support Remember A Charity’s
current awareness campaign into charitable legacies, which
aims to normalise leaving gifts in wills and create talkability.
The research asked over 1000 people across the UK questions
relating to their parents’ will, their attitudes to
their inheritance and legacy giving and the types of charities
they would be proud for their parents to support with a
According to the research, the cause areas which people
would be most proud for their parents to consider are cancer
and child welfare charities (63%).
The research suggests that growing levels of social awareness
and charity mindedness are behind the trend. 80% of survey
respondents considered themselves charitably minded while
72% have become more interested in social issues like international
aid and the environment over the last five years.
Professor Cathy Pharoah, Co-Director of the ESRC Research
Centre for Charitable Giving and Philanthropy at Cass Business
School, said: “Families are an important place for
passing on the values of giving, and this research shows
that children can feel very proud of their parents' desire
to support the causes they care about through legacies.
“Charitable legacies have the power to help shape
the world for future generations. More people are making
bequests to charities tackling the global challenges of
the future, such as environmental causes, international
development and cancer. Whether your legacy is small or
large, it can protect the future of the local or global
charitable work you most value.”
But while a new generation is happy to see their parents
give money to charity in their will, the parents themselves
are still playing catch-up.
Previous studies have found that for many having a family
and wanting them to come first often means a charity is
never considered – possibly because people incorrectly
assume it’s an ‘all or nothing’ situation.
Stephen George, chair of Remember A Charity and head of
legacies for the NSPCC commented: “This research flips
the issue of charity-giving in wills on its head. Despite
what many parents may think, it seems many of us are very
happy to see a proportion of our parent’s estate go
"This perception gap may be why only 7% of the UK
population have included a charitable gift in a will. If
we could increase this to 11% - we could raise an extra
£1 billion for UK charities and the vital work they