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Legacy giving to Scottish charities is showing a year-on-year rise, with the latest data showing that it reached £136mn in 2020/2021, according to a new report.
The Scottish Legacy Market Report 2023, from Remember A Charity and Legacy Futures, highlights the growth and breadth of the Scottish legacy market, and shares insights and recommendations from charity legacy experts to help those at the start of their legacy fundraising journey.
The report also shares how legacies account for one fifth of all money donated to Scottish charities, and that almost 50% of all Scottish charities’ legacy income goes to the country’s top 50 charities. They received a total of £66mn in 2020/21, which was 2.8% higher than the previous year, with the biggest share going to health causes.
The statistics in the report come from a variety of sources including SCVO and Smee & Ford as well as OKO/Remember A Charity, and Legacy Foresight. The insights and recommendations come from legacy experts at CHAS, Worldwide Cancer Research, Children in Scotland, Cancer Support Scotland and SCOTLAND: The Big Picture.
The report also shares that:
- The connection supporters feel to good causes continues to grow along with a rising interest in legacy giving.
- 42% of Scots aged 40 and above say they would be happy to give in this way and 21% have already done so.
- Some 500 Scottish charities of all sizes are named in Wills each year.
Gifts in Wills are the largest single source of voluntary income for charities in the UK, and raise almost £3.9 billion for good causes annually. Whilst Scotland’s legacy market is younger than that of England and Wales, the report says it is seeing considerable long-term growth, with hundreds of charities of all sizes now being named in Wills each year.
Kath Horsley, Director of Insight at Legacy Foresight, commented:
“The fundraising market is becoming increasingly challenging and competitive but for those charities who continue to invest in legacy fundraising it remains resilient and we continue to see legacy income on an upward trajectory. Whilst the Scottish market is relatively small, it is clear that Scotland is on a similar trend to that of the UK as a whole, and the forecast for charity legacies remains promising.”
Lucinda Frostick, Director at Remember A Charity, added:
“In the cost-of-living crisis, money is tight for charities and supporters alike. But in many ways, this brings us all closer together, with people being acutely aware of the need for charitable services and wanting to support the causes they care about. As legacy giving has little or no upfront cost while offering the potential to achieve a better future, we’re seeing appetite for giving in this way reach record levels. Legacies offer a huge growth opportunity for Scottish charities.”
New legacy fundraising support for small charities
Also this month, the Legacy Futures group has launched new support for charities that want to take their first steps into the world of legacy fundraising, many of which are likely to be smaller and emerging charities. Launched in the UK, Legacy StartUp will also be available through their Dutch office which covers the Netherlands and Germany for any European organisations wishing to understand and implement legacy fundraising for the first time.
Legacy StartUp will help charities that are not yet receiving legacy income to understand how they can tap into it, and to develop their legacy fundraising programme through a series of practical steps. It will also help charities that have never previously undertaken legacy fundraising to quantify the impact of investing in this area, and calculate likely return on investment along with the timeframe for receiving that return. By illustrating to charities their forecasted legacy income over the long term, it aims to support them in building the case for investment.
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