Local law firm Voisin will hold a Charity Wills Roadshow throughout August to highlight the funding plight of local charities.

Representatives from their Wills and Probate department will be on location across the island to offer consultations on Wills and, in particular, to offer guidance on leaving a legacy to a charity.

The legal team’s first venue will be the RNLI Station on Wednesday 4th August. Following on from this, on Wednesday 18th August, they will be located at Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust.

Anne Hembry and Janina Porter will be on hand to answer questions from the public. If any instructions result from these events, 25% of their fee will be donated to the respective charities.

Voisin decided to launch the campaign after reading a report published last month by ESRC Centre for Charitable Giving and Philanthropy (CGAP). The research found that UK charities had suffered a 3% drop in legacies, the equivalent of £57 million, in the value of money left to them in 2008/09. On contacting local charities, Voisin found the findings to be reflected in Jersey.

Legacies are the foundation of many of the charities in Jersey and are vital in making sure that all the good work they do can continue.

Anne Hembry, Probate and Estates Manager, Voisin, says:

‘At Voisin we want to highlight the plight of Jersey charities – some are facing dramatic spending cuts and others are suffering due to a decline in legacies. That is why we are stepping out of the office and going to speak to the public on location. Legacy giving is the invisible lifeline for so many charities yet many people don't realise they can make a gift in this way; they think it's about large gifts but the truth is, that after looking after family and friends first, a small share of whatever is left can make a real difference to charities and the invaluable work they do. We hope to get the message across, whilst also having the opportunity to discuss their Wills with the public, and raising significant funds for our local charities.’

Natalie Ranise, Individual Giving Fundraiser, Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust, says:

‘Legacies are a large source of income for Durrell. 67% of the population support charities in their lifetime but only 4.3% include a charity in their Will. We hope that our upcoming campaign will have an impact and we’re looking forward to Voisin being a part of this.

Caryll McFadyen, RNLI, says:

‘Few people have an up-to-date Will, so we hope this initiative with Voisin will encourage individuals and couples to settle their affairs. There is no obligation to leave a gift to the RNLI through the scheme, but once people have remembered loved ones we would be very thankful for any support they can give. Six out of ten lifeboat launches are made possible thanks to gifts in Wills. Every legacy is a lifesaver – from boots to boats – every penny left to the RNLI will help our volunteers stay safe and save lives.’

The first Wills Legacy event will be held at the St Helier Lifeboat Station, Albert Pier, on Wednesday 4th August, from 3pm to 5pm. The second event will be held at Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust on Wednesday 18th August from 3pm to 5pm. For more information, the public can contact Georgina Jeffries Tel: 01534 500441, email: georginajeffries@voisinlaw.com