We’re just a few weeks away from Remember A Charity Week (11-17 September 2017) – the annual celebration and public awareness drive for legacy giving. Are you ready?
With a record number of 190 charities now working together as part of Remember A Charity, we’re hoping that this year’s awareness week will be our biggest campaign yet and take us all a step closer to making gifts in Wills a social norm.
This September, we’ll be broadcasting throughout the week, touring the country with a national roadshow to showcase the impact of legacies and encouraging the public to have their say on the world they will pass on. We’ll also run a social media campaign and
continue our annual push to the legal sector, to ensure they are making their clients aware of the option of giving to charity.
But what can your charity do to get ready and make the most of this year’s Remember A Charity Week?
Get top level support
If you’re to achieve real success, legacies have to be supported from the top of the organisation. Make sure your CEO and/or trustees know all about the campaign and what they can do to help the charity achieve its legacy goals. Their voice and influence will help demonstrate that it’s a priority for the organisation and build recognition internally.
For example, CEO Adrian Burder shared his words of wisdom to kick off Dogs Trust’s #MyWisdom quotes during Remember A Charity Week 2016:
— Dogs Trust 🐶 (@DogsTrust) September 12, 2016
Don’t stop there. Identity a handful of other key individuals in your organisation who will be your legacy champions and help you become loud about legacies. It can be worth setting aside a ‘sticky bun fund’ so you can get them a coffee (and a sticky bun) to show them your appreciation and encourage them to help you champion legacies.
Train everyone how to talk legacies
Every person in your charity is a potential legacy fundraiser. So make sure they are all comfortable talking about legacy fundraising, at all levels of the charity. Why not host some lunchtime sessions and explain the importance and potential of legacies for the organisation? You could also use the time to dispel a few myths and to help build confidence around how they can open up the conversation about legacies.
Don’t keep legacies in the dark
For many organisations, legacies are something they receive, but are rarely proactively promoted. In short, there is little active legacy fundraising going on. Make sure you shine a spotlight on what could become your biggest income generator (if it isn’t already) and use the full range of fundraising channels. After all, many of your future legacy supporters may not be on your database, so you’ll need to reach that little bit further. This might involve event fundraising, promoting legacies in a charity shop and reaching out over social media.
Tell a story and inspire
Legacies shouldn’t ever be boring. Yes, you’re talking with people about their final wishes, but this is a chance for them to make a real difference on the world around them. Tell a story – show potential supporters what legacies really mean to the charity and paint a picture of a world that could be possible with the power of a legacy. Aim to inspire and have fun. Don’t be afraid of using humour.
Get the conversation started
Starting conversations with supporters is often one of the biggest hurdles people have to overcome to succeed with legacy fundraising. Use Remember A Charity Week as a way to start talking with your supporters about legacies. Hundreds of people and organisations will be getting involved, so you won’t be alone. Have the confidence to talk about the difference a gift in a Will could make to your charity and take the plunge – have a good chinwag.
And, don’t forget, during the week itself we’ll be using the hashtag #HaveYourSay, encouraging people to share their thoughts about the world they want to pass on and promoting legacy giving. Make sure you’re part of that conversation too!
It goes without saying of course, but if you’re not already part of the consortium, now’s the time to get on board. Each year we’re making more and more noise about legacies and giving charities the tools they need to reach out to supporters. We have a huge vision – making legacy giving a social norm. We’re making good progress, but the more charities that join us and add their voices, the closer we’ll get to achieving that vision and seeing legacies benefit charities nationwide.
Find out more information about Remember A Charity in your Will Week 2017 and the consortium’s other activities.
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