Christmas Greetings

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Report says advisers should be trained on philanthropy

Advisers should receive training to provide better advice on philanthropy, according to a report by The Law Family Commission on Civil Society. The report, titled Mind the Giving Gap: Unleashing the potential of UK philanthropy, found that each year the UK public donates nearly £20bn of their own money to charities.
But despite this, data from a range of surveys showed the British people were giving less to charity – including the highest earners who were now giving 20% less than they were a decade ago. As a result of this, charities are estimated to have missed out on around £2.1billion in donations over the past decade.

The Joy of Giving

I was reminded of the joy of giving to others on Sunday morning. This was not in a sermon but when 25 children of Hong Kong families who have recently arrived in Guildford sang a selection of Christmas songs to the congregation. They have been uprooted from their homes because of the situation with China and they have arrived in Guildford to a largely unknown future. But as one of their adults said before the children sang, at least they now feel safe.

This is their first Christmas in the UK and these 25 children and their families have been warmly welcomed and many people have had the pleasure of helping them settle in. But on Sunday morning  you could see the joy on the children’s faces as they gave something back to those who had befriended them and as they looked forward to Christmas.

I have spent a very long career showing people how to make more of the wealth that they have earned through their work or inherited from others. I hope that I have encouraged people to let money flow to others, both in their family and outside, rather than simply let it stagnate. 

I hope that you will have a really Happy Christmas and that during the year ahead you will find those to whom you can enjoy sharing your wealth with however much or little that may be. To quote The Apostle Paul “You’ll not likely go wrong here if you keep remembering that our Master said, ‘You’re far happier giving than getting.’”

Additional facts about giving to charity

You are probably aware of the Gift Aid scheme which turns £100 gift into £125 to the charity. But not all higher or additional rate tax payers realise that such a gift can also result in additional tax relief to them.

Your charitable gift does not need to come from your income but can be from capital.

In addition you can secure income tax relief if you:

 Give land or buildings in the UK or qualifying shares to a charity
 Sell these to a charity at less than their market value

And where assets that are chargeable assets for Capital Gains tax are given to a charity any gains that would otherwise arise will not be taxed.

There can also be a reduced rate of Inheritance Tax if you leave 10% of your taxable estate to charity.

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