The world of legacy giving is all over the place – but going up. I have been saying for some time it is like dancing the Hokey Cokey but it seems to be dancing in a fascinating direction. It seems strange to note that the number of medical research legacies has actually decreased over the last eight years – I never thought this would happen, but it has.
What is so exciting is the rapid increase in legacy giving to three sectors in particular: education, the arts (performing and non-performing) and smaller more focused charities.
The legator of yesterday is dead (!) long live the legator of tomorrow: they are baby boomers – with married couples making independent decisions on their charitable legacies – hence the increase in the number of legacies from men.
This “thinking and financially aware” generation is not splashing out on traditional legacy causes. This generation is looking at areas of real need which relate to their lifestyle: enjoyment of the arts and a big thank you for “making me successful” at Uni and “the charity down the road they can “touch”.
This generation is looking for financial prudence and taking a far greater interest in HOW their favourite non-profit is funded. Spontaneous legacies put in some years ago are being taken out by the shedload and being replaced.
So let’s end with a new verse of the hokey cokey:
Your legacy out
In, out, in, out
Shake it all about.
You do the hokey-cokey
And you change your mind.
That’s what it’s all about.