The power of a Gift in your Will

Gifts in Wills are incredibly important to charities. Learn how to leave a gift in your Will and everything you need to know before deciding.

12 October 2022

Portrait of a woman wearing a red and orange head scarf

As a charity, ShelterBox relies on the generosity of people like you to support families who’ve lost their home after disaster or conflict.

By leaving a gift in your Will for ShelterBox, you are changing the lives of thousands of people after a devastating disaster.


Why should I leave a gift in my Will to charity?

There are several reasons why you might leave a gift in your Will:

  • Giving money to charity in your Will is a great way to leave a positive legacy for the future and know that your values and beliefs will be passed on to future generations.
  • It can be a way of remembering a loved one.
  • A gift in your Will to a UK-based charity is free from inheritance tax (IHT) & can potentially reduce IHT on your entire Estate to 36% (please seek professional tax advice).
  • Any gift, no matter the size, makes a huge difference to the lives of the people we support.

Who should I leave a gift in my Will to?

We understand that you will want to care for your loved ones to support them into the future.

So first, think about your family or friends. You might then want to think about any charities you feel strongly about. At ShelterBox, 1 in 6 families are supported by legacy donations. And without them, we simply wouldn’t be as effective at reaching families after disaster or conflict.

How do I leave a gift in my Will?

To leave a gift you just need the charity name, address and registered charity number. For example, for supporters choosing to leave a gift to ShelterBox they would simply insert the following:

I give to ShelterBox Trust of Falcon House, Charles Street, Truro TR1 2PH, registered charity numbers 1096479 [__% of the residue] of my estate/[specified amount] absolutely for its general charitable purposes.

You will also need to state the amount you wish to leave. Residuary gifts, a share of what is left in your estate once you have provided for your loved ones, has the advantage over a specific sum of money as inflation will not reduce their value over time. Alternatively, you can choose to leave a pecuniary gift – a fixed amount of money.

If you have any questions about this, we’re here to help so please do contact our Gift in Wills experts on 0300 0300 500 or email at [email protected].

If I leave a gift in my Will to charity, does that mean my family and friends go without?

When you write your Will, family and friends always come first.

But more and more people are choosing to remember their favourite charity in their Will. By choosing to leave a residuary gift, a percentage or share of your estate once all other payments have been made to family and friends, you can make sure your values live on in the world, even after you’ve gone.

If I choose to leave a gift in my Will, where does the money go?

Should you choose to leave a gift in your Will to ShelterBox, the money will be used to support people most in need at the time we receive your gift. Shelley, for example, whose home was destroyed after Cyclone Harold made landfall in Vanuatu on 6th April 2020.

Thanks to the incredible generosity of our supporters, we were able to provide shelter for 2,000 families. These shelter kits meant that Shelley had a tarpaulin to afford her family a dry night’s sleep, a spade, shovel and nails to rebuild her house and later return to subsistence farming– her livelihood depending on this.

Woman and child with kitchen utensils in Vanuatu
“Thank you very much to all those that gave everything to give to us. We are so happy that you have helped our village after the cyclone” – Shelley, pictured above with her son.


Did you know that we offer a Free Will writing service?

We offer a Free Wills Services all year round where anyone aged 18 or over in England and Wales can write or update their simple Will completely free of charge.

Want to find out more?

We know that leaving a gift in your Will is something you’ll want to think about very carefully. You can find out more information by requesting our free gift in Wills pack by completing the following form. You can receive this by downloading, through the post or both.

Alternatively, if you’d like to discuss leaving a gift to ShelterBox, please call 0300 0300 500 and ask our Gift in Wills specialists or email at [email protected].


Originally written by Emma Howell, Fundraising Projects Assistant
Banner image: Mariamo Momande, Mozambique.