United Way Southern Vancouver Island Kicks off Leave a Legacy Month

May 8, 2023 / by United Way

Victoria, BC (May 8, 2023) – Although few people enjoy meditating on their mortality, spring is an excellent time to consider such themes as renewal, regeneration, and one’s lifelong contributions to friends, family, and community.

One way to keep contributing to the well-being of your community, far into the future, is to include a charitable gift in the estate planning process—a message that United Way Southern Vancouver Island (UWSVI) encourages people to consider this May, which is Leave a Legacy Month.

A legacy gift is a living reminder that donors who care about their community support causes that are important to them.

“The bestowing of a legacy gift can be a powerful gesture that brings a meaningful conclusion to a well-lived life,” says Erika Stenson, UWSVI Executive Director. “This is especially true for people who have donated to UWSVI during their lives, see the kind of impact their donations have made in the community, and want to see that work continue, to match their own optimistic vision for the future.”

It is cliché—but an accurate one—that there are three places one’s estate can go when you die: to family, to charities, or to the government. For those who have always been passionate about making positive changes to society, naming a non-profit charity like UWSVI in your will can be an excellent option.

Planned effectively, a legacy gift in your will can provide you with substantial financial benefits and tax savings, while ensuring that the issues you care about will continue to be supported in the future.

Legacy gifts can be used in the near-term to benefit the community or can be invested and endowed to support the future needs of the community in perpetuity.

“I like the idea of continuing my donations after I’m gone with a permanent gift that will be my legacy to our region and have named United Way in my will to ensure this happens,” says community member and donor Barb McVagh. “It’s a wonderful feeling.”

UWSVI has compiled a comprehensive list of resources and options for those interested in learning more about leaving a legacy, as well as tools for those, like lawyers and estate planners, who are assisting people in the planning process. You can learn more at uwsvi.ca/howtogive/legacy-gifts.

Before you leave a charitable gift in your financial plan, Stenson notes that it is always worth careful discussion with your family about your intentions and seeking the counsel of legal and financial professionals.

About United Way Southern Vancouver Island

For 85 years, United Way Southern Vancouver Island (UWSVI) has served the local community and remains dedicated to supporting people in areas where they need it most. We believe everyone in the Greater Victoria region, which includes 13 municipalities and 11 First Nations and the Southern Gulf Islands, should have the opportunity to reach their potential. Last year, UWSVI supported close to 63,000 individuals on Southern Vancouver Island in building better lives. That is almost one in six people in our region being helped by a United Way initiative or funded program.


Erik Lambertson
Director, Marketing + Communications
United Way Southern Vancouver Island
Office: 250.984.2269 ext. 265