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Stories: Children, Communities, Futures

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The Include a Charity campaign, which is supported by dozens of not-for-profit organisations, aims to encourage more people to leave a charitable gift in their Will, and increase the positive impact we can make as individuals on society.

Research conducted by the Fundraising Institute of Australia shows that the number of Australians leaving gifts in their Wills increased from 7.9 per cent in 2016 to 11 per cent in 2019. To build on this progress, every year the campaign provides important information and guidance on how to leave a lasting legacy during Include a Charity Week (7 – 13 September). 

Read on to learn why gifts in Wills matter for charitable organisations, and the positive impact you can make for future generations.

What is Include a Charity Week?

Include a Charity Week is an annual social change campaign, initiated by the Fundraising Institute of Australia (FIA). The aim of the annual observance is to encourage more Australians to leave a gift in their Will to a charity of their choice, increasing the funds invested in Australia’s non-profit sector, and the impact member organisations can make. 

The campaign relies entirely on the involvement of its charity members, which run their own awareness activities leading up to and during Include a Charity Week. Together, Include a Charity members use this opportunity to raise public awareness of gifts in Wills, and the important difference a legacy can make.

What is a charitable gift left in your Will?

A gift left to a charity in your will is simply that, a gift to your chosen charitable organisation. It is a dollar amount of your choice, bequeathed to a charity whose work you admire. 

You don’t need to be wealthy to leave a gift in your Will. A donation of any amount supports the work of the beneficiary organisation into the future.

What does it mean to leave a donation to charity as a gift in your Will?

It’s time to change the way we think about Will-making. Your Will is your legacy. Of course, every Australian wants to ensure that their loved ones are taken care of, but after you’ve provided for your family and friends you have the opportunity to make a lasting difference in the world

Think about the world you’ve lived in, and how you’d like the world to be in the future. A gift to a charity in your Will is an opportunity to express your wishes for that future, and to support organisations who are working towards realising that dream. 

Did you know that much of charities’ vital income comes from those who leave a charitable gift in their Will? Your legacy contributes towards a reliable and sustainable source of income, which enables organisations like ChildFund Australia to continue its vital work.

How can you support a cause or charity you care about during Include a Charity Week?

We are asking all Australians to take the time to consider leaving a gift in their Will, of any size, to a charity that supports a cause they care about. 

This week is a timely opportunity to start the conversation, do some research, and carefully consider the legacy you’d like to leave for future generations. 

For valuable guidance on including a charitable gift in your Will, visit www.includeacharity.com.au. And if you are considering leaving a gift to ChildFund Australia, learn more about naming us as a beneficiary and get in touch with our staff if you have further questions.

Charity fundraising events are a fun way to get your friends, family, and wider community together to support a good cause. There are lots of different ways you can go about this, so here are some great ideas and tips to suit every individual, timeframe, and budget.

It is essential that any face-to-face event complies with COVID-19 restrictions in your state, so ensure you factor a safe head count into your event planning.

1. Facebook birthday fundraiser

You’ll be surprised how much money you can raise for your favourite cause using Facebook’s ingenious birthday fundraiser feature. Social media is a great way to spread awareness about all kinds of issues, including children living in poverty, and it’s really easy to set up. Two weeks out from the date, you’ll receive a notification from Facebook, giving you the option to fundraise for your birthday.

Fundraising Tip

You can boost your fundraiser and generate more awareness around your cause by including personal stories and pictures that are compelling, inspirational, and impactful.

2. Fundraise in lieu of gifts for special occasions

Instead of receiving gifts for your special occasion, ask your loved ones to go online and purchase a charity gift from our ‘Gifts for Good’ catalogue instead. It’s a simple and easy way to raise funds with minimal fuss. 

You may even decide to put together a charity gift list that your friends and family can tick off to provide children in developing communities with many forms of support.

Fundraising Tip: 

You can also do this for other special occasions like weddings, kitchen teas and baby showers, where in place of wishing wells or gift registries you ask guests to donate to your chosen cause.

3. Trivia night

Get your wider community together and challenge them to trivia. Trivia nights are one of the classic fundraising ideas and an inexpensive way to host a charity event. Host one at your house, online, or partner with a local restaurant or pub (depending on COVID-19 restrictions in your city). 

All you need to do is pick a fun theme, promote it on social media and through word-of-mouth, and charge each team a participation fee. You can also reach out to local businesses to ask for prize donations. Throughout the night, remind attendees of the cause and encourage them to make further contributions. 

Fundraising Tip: 

Theme your trivia night around topics that will excite your group. For example, if it’s a family event, a great question might be, “Guess what Disney movies the following five songs are from?”

4. School fundraiser

School fundraisers are a great way to raise money and awareness among your local community. You can run raffles, flea markets, bake sales, craft stalls, and host fun challenges people can pay to play.

Fundraising Tip: 

Boost funds raised by charging a gold coin donation to participate.

5. Parents night out

Give mums and dads in your local area a break one night by hosting a movie and games night for the kids. Charge a small participation fee and ask everyone to contribute a snack to share with the group. You can partner with a local organisation like a school or playgroup for a big night of fun. 

Fundraising Tip: 

Immerse the kids in another world by theming the games and decorations around the movie.

6. Neighbourhood concert

Take your fundraiser to your street and host your very own charity fundraiser concert. You can host a talent show, or invite local musicians to perform, and charge a small entry fee. Add a sausage sizzle, a bake sale, and a community garage sale to make it fun for all ages and boost funds raised.

Fundraising Tip: 

Advertise your fundraising event a few weeks in advance and promote your cause on social media to attract interest. Don’t forget to obtain the right permits from your local council.

7. Scavenger hunt

For a more active fundraising idea, organise a scavenger hunt around your local neighbourhood or park. A scavenger hunt is a fun way for kids and adults of all ages to get outside and spend time together. Have people sign up in teams of 2-4 and pay a team fee to participate. Set up challenges and clues for teams to work their way through, and give out prizes for winning teams. 

Fundraising Tip: 

Use each checkpoint as an opportunity for teams to learn more about your cause.

8. Recipe book

Ask students at your local school to contribute family recipes, either as a Word or PDF document, and create a recipe book that can be purchased online by parents and community members. You’ll be surprised at the variety of delicious recipes that people contribute.

Fundraising Tip: 

People like to see how their donations will make an impact, so be sure to include an introduction explaining where the funds will go. For example, “For every four books sold, we will purchase one Food for Thought Bundle which includes a gift of two water filters, four fruit trees, and four packs of seeds will provide clean water and lifelong nutritious foods for families”.

9. Car wash

Another simple yet practical fundraising idea is a charity car wash. Everyone needs a good car wash once in a while, so why not host one in the car park of your local sports club or school? All you need is a team of helpers, street signs, and some eco-friendly cleaning supplies. It’s a great way to spread awareness of the work your charity does, while cooling off on a hot summer afternoon.

Fundraising Tip: 

Make sure you put up some eye-catching signs to catch the attention of passing drivers.

10. Physical challenges

Themed fun runs, walks, and rides are tried-and-tested charity fundraising ideas that are a lot of fun, generate awareness, and get entire communities involved around a common cause while promoting an active lifestyle. You can register for events like Tough Mudder and ask people to sponsor your team. 

Fundraising Tip: 

You can also host your very own physical challenge event and bring some fun for the families in your local community. Remember the ALS ice bucket challenge? Let your imagination run wild. 

Put the fun back into fundraising!

Put the fun back into fundraising! We hope that you’re feeling inspired about your next event. If you’d like to support disadvantaged children, or help families impacted by disasters and emergencies, consider partnering with ChildFund for your fundraising event.