A partnership between Hawke's Bay Foundation and 10 local law firms is making it easier for people to leave a gift in their will.

For the month of September, clients of participating law firms can update an existing will to include a gift to the Hawke's Bay Foundation at no charge to them.

Linda Calder, development manager of Hawke's Bay Foundation, says the aim of Wills Month is to give people the opportunity to think about their ongoing charitable giving.
"More and more people are considering how they can make a difference to their community after they're gone," Linda says.

"Leaving a small percentage of your estate to the Hawke's Bay Foundation is a fantastic way to create a lasting legacy that will benefit the region for generations to come. We work closely with our donors to ensure the causes they care about benefit from their generosity."

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Kevin Callinicos of Willis Legal, one of the 10 participating firms, says Wills Month also highlights the importance of having a valid will in place to ensure that when you die, your estate is distributed in accordance with your wishes.

"I have been surprised at how receptive people are to the suggestion of making a gift to a charity, when I raise it with them when doing a will. For people with a strong connection to Hawke's Bay but no connection to any particular charity, the Hawke's Bay Foundation is the ideal solution for somebody wishing to benefit the local community."

Community foundations are one of the fastest-growing areas of philanthropy worldwide, says Calder, with 17 foundations in New Zealand and more than 1800 worldwide.

"People are realising the value of community foundations as a way of supporting their local area, now and into the future. Every donation and bequest is invested for the long-term, with only the interest being used to benefit the local community.

"It's a unique model which offers a sustainable alternative to traditional funding models."
The firms participating in Wills Month are Bannister von Dadelszen, Bay Legal, Bramwell Bate Lawyers, Carlile Dowling, DK Legal, Gifford Devine, Langley Twigg Law, Sainsbury, Logan & Williams, Souness Stone and Willis Legal. Wills Month runs until September28.

*To find out more, visit hawkesbayfoundation.org.nz or contact one of the participating practices.