You might have heard the saying, “The only certainties in life are death and taxes.” While taxes are often discussed ad nauseam, death remains – understandably – a highly sensitive subject for many people. This can mean that so many of us avoid the thought and task of Will writing—a crucial part of life’s to-do list that many put off until it’s too late. But is there a way to address this discomfort? Simran Panchal, our Fundraising Assistant, looks at the process of Will writing as a way to reflect on what’s important in our lives and what we want to leave behind.
How writing your Will is like learning a new language: intimidating but rewarding. You know how you’ve always said you want to learn another language? It’s a thrilling idea, but then you think about the grammar, the vocabulary, and the pronunciation, and suddenly it becomes this colossal task that you push to the ‘someday’ list. That’s precisely how many of us view Will writing; it’s daunting and complex, so we just keep delaying it.
The resistance to writing a Will often comes from a blend of emotional and logistical challenges:
- Emotionally, we’re faced with the discomfort of acknowledging our own mortality—a topic that’s challenging to so many of us.
- Logistically, the legalities and formalities seem as perplexing as conjugating verbs in a language we don’t speak.
Writing a Will ensures peace of mind and a secure future for your loved ones. So why not tackle it head-on? Just as mastering a new language opens up worlds of opportunities and enrichment, getting your Will in order can bring a newfound sense of peace and purpose.
Seeing writing a will as an act of love.
Throughout life, we celebrate many milestones that have long-term consequences—graduating from school, getting married perhaps, or buying a home— shouldn’t we all see the act of Will writing in the same light? Crafting a Will is more than a mere legal process; it’s an act of love, a demonstration of responsibility, and can even be seen as a celebration of your life.
Establishing what’s important to you. By creating a Will, you’re making meaningful choices to shape how your values, commitments, and responsibilities will continue to manifest after you’re gone. It is a proactive step to ensure your wishes are respected and that your assets are distributed in a way that aligns with your priorities.
These priorities could range from taking care of your family, to supporting charitable causes you are passionate about. For those reasons, Will writing can be seen as the ultimate act of mindfulness, an occasion to pause and reflect and perhaps even share your life’s principles and aspirations with loved ones. Far from being a task to be dreaded or avoided, writing a Will should be seen as a milestone that can be valued and even celebrated.
The importance of gifts in Wills for charities
Leaving ripples of positive impact behind. You know that feeling when you drop a pebble into a still pond and watch the ripples extend farther than you’d expect? That’s what a gift in your Will can do for charities like the Fight for Sight / Vision Foundation. An individual contribution can seem like no more than a pebble, but its impact radiates outward in what can be truly unexpected ways.
Maybe your legacy donation becomes the critical funding for a study that brings us one step closer to curing eye conditions. Or perhaps it’s the catalyst that helps someone gain the skills they need to live independently despite sight loss. Like ripples in a pond, these impacts keep extending, touching lives of the people involved, their friends, family, and members of their community in profound ways that can be both immediate and eternal.
The data behind the transformative power of legacy gifts. Did you know that legacy donations account for around 15% of all voluntary income for UK charities? That’s a massive slice of the philanthropic pie. Moreover, as reported by the UK’s Charities Aid Foundation, the total amount of legacy giving in the country rose by an astounding 56% over the last decade. These gifts have the power to:
- bolster long-term projects,
- support vital research,
- and ensure that charities can remain agile and responsive to evolving needs.
But perhaps the most compelling statistic is one that can’t be neatly quantified: the number of lives transformed through legacy gifts. Every single legacy donation is a transformative action, adding another verse to the ongoing symphony of human achievement and kindness.
So, in a world where numbers dictate so much of our decision-making, let your legacy be the kind of statistic that genuinely counts—one that changes lives for the better, long after your own journey has concluded. That’s not just a legacy; it’s a masterclass in how to make life truly meaningful.
What legacy giving means to Louisa…
Louisa Vincent, Co-Chair of our Board of Trustees, has seen the power of legacy gifts first-hand and so has decided to make one herself.
“Having a family member with type 1 diabetes has made conditions like diabetic retinopathy a real concern for us. Including Fight for Sight /Vision Foundation in my Will wasn’t just a ‘nice thing to do’; it was driven by my belief in the tangible change and ground-breaking science that legacy gifts can ignite. If you’re considering a legacy gift, know that Fight for Sight / Vision Foundation will honour your intentions with the utmost respect and responsibility.”
Free Will-writing with Vision Foundation…
If you’re ready to write your Will and wondering where to start, we can help. October is Free Wills Month, so we’re offering our supporters the opportunity to have your Will written for free by our Will writing partner, Farewill. This service streamlines the experience, offering guidance and support at every step, so you can focus on ensuring your wishes are fulfilled.
Or alternatively, if you would like to find out more about leaving a gift to Vision Foundation in your Will, writing a Will or how gifts in Wills can inspire and transform a generation, you can get in touch directly:
Phone: 020 7620 2066
Post: Vision Foundation, 18 Mansell Street, London, E1 8AA