National Campaign Urges Canadians to Think Differently About Giving and Leave a Gift to Charity in Their Wills

Will Power™ is a multi-year national effort to inspire Canadians to create positive change in the world while still supporting loved ones   

OTTAWA, Sept. 01, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Nearly 500 charities, financial advisors and legal professionals from across Canada are coming together for the launch of Will Power™, a national public education effort designed to show Canadians the power they have to make a difference with their Wills. Campaign organizers anticipate that if enough Canadians join the effort and leave a charitable gift in their Will, they can raise as much as $40 billion dollars in the next 10 years to support important social causes. 

Will Power™ is spearheaded by the CAGP Foundation and the Canadian Association of Gift Planners, a professional association that brings together charitable fundraisers and advisors in Canada to create a better world through strategic charitable giving. 

“You may be surprised to learn that even 1% left to charity in your Will can have an enormous impact on your cause, while still leaving 99% of your estate to your family,” said Ruth MacKenzie, CEO of CAGP and Executive Director of the CAGP Foundation. “You don’t have to choose between your loved ones and the causes you care about when planning your Will.”

Research conducted by the CAGP Foundation shows that 86 per cent of Canadians are aware they can leave a charitable gift in a Will, but more than 60 per cent reject doing so because they believe it would take away from their support of loved ones. Yet leaving just a small portion of a person’s estate to charity could result in a bigger contribution than they would ever think possible, while still supporting those they love.

“The main objective of WillPower™ is to give people a new way of thinking about donating to charity,” said Laurie Fox, Will Power™ Campaign Director. “A Will is much more than a legal document to distribute personal assets. It’s also a powerful tool to make change in the world.”  

The national participation rate in charitable giving through Wills is currently 5 per cent. The goal of the Will Power™ campaign is to increase it to 8.5 per cent by 2030. There are more than 20 countries around the world with similar campaigns aimed at inspiring their public to leave gifts in Wills to charity.

“It may come as a surprise that significant taxes will be levied against your estate when you pass,” said Michel Beauchamp, Notary Emeritus and Co-Founder of Beauchamp & Gilbert, Notaires Inc. in Quebec. “Leaving a gift in your Will to a cause that you care about can greatly reduce the taxes to be paid.”

The Will Power™ campaign’s website,, is designed to make it easier for Canadians to understand how they can leave a gift in their Will to charity, and to take action. The site features a legacy calculator to visualize what it looks like to leave a bequest to charity and still support loved ones. It also provides tips on financial planning and Will writing, features charities and how they’d use your future bequest, as well as a way for potential donors to connect with advisors and take that first step towards leaving a gift in their Will. 

About CAGP and the CAGP Foundation
Will Power™ is a campaign of the CAGP Foundation in partnership with the Canadian Association of Gift Planners (CAGP). The CAGP Foundation aims to financially support the development and promotion of excellence in charitable gift planning in Canada; CAGP is a national professional association that brings together charitable fundraisers and advisors advancing strategic charitable giving in their communities. Both organizations believe that we can build a better world by putting the power of philanthropy in the hands of many more Canadians, through gifts in wills and other types of strategic giving. Find out more at

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EN: Kathleen Munro
FR: Lamia Charlebois