We all have our favourite charities, and when it comes to supporting the good causes close to our hearts, as a nation we're always hugely generous. Over three-quarters of us regularly support charities in one way or another, whether it's a regular donation or giving our time to raise money by doing everything from sky diving to sponsored walks and baking cakes.
In these tough economic times, charities are grateful for this continued support. But there is another easy way in which people can make a real difference for good causes, one which many may not have consider - by leaving a gift in their Will.
It's a common myth that only the rich and famous leave money to charity when they die. This couldn't be further from the truth. The reality is without the gifts left in Wills by people like you and I, many of the charities we know and love simply wouldn't even exist. Currently only around 6% of us do this, raising almost £2billion a year to charities. That's equivalent to around 19 Comic Relief appeals.
All of us will be touched at some point in our lives by the remarkable work charities do, but without gifts left in Wills, much of this good work simply would not happen. Many UK charities rely heavily on gifts in Wills: two out of three guide dogs and six out of ten life boat launches paid for by gifts in Wills, as is over a third of Cancer Research UK's life-saving work. It's something I'm acutely aware of due to my work with the British Red Cross, where I've seen first-hand, the real difference charities can continue to make thanks to gifts left in Wills.
Naturally, friends and families come first, but even a small donation of what remains could help charities safeguard their services. This week 40,000 people will make or amend a Will, raising £40million for good causes across the UK. Just imagine the difference we could all make if we pledged to remember our favourite charity in our Wills.
If you're making a Will this week, take a moment to consider the lasting impact you could make with a gift to a good cause in your Will - your donation could be gift of a lifetime.
Angela Rippon is supporting Remember A Charity Week 2013. Visit rememberacharity.org.uk for more information or view the online video