Have you ever considered leaving a gift to Christian Aid in your Will? Or making a donation in memory of a loved one? It’s a warm and generous thought. But how can you be sure that gift will transform lives?
Last year, three of our supporters went to Haiti to see for themselves just what legacies and gifts in memory can do.
Scroll down to follow their journey.
Kathy’s daughter, Esther, was a normal teenager, with the usual teenage preoccupations. Then she was diagnosed with cancer.
As she became ill, her faith became stronger – and so did her determination to help others.
At the end of her own life, she wanted to use the money she’d saved to help people whose need, she felt, was greater than her own. So she left a gift to Christian Aid.
For Kathy, the trip to Haiti was an opportunity to carry on the work Esther had begun – and see for herself what her daughter’s legacy might achieve.
‘Visiting all the amazing work in Haiti made me see how in her death, Esther had given other people a chance to truly live.’
Driven by the gospel message of good news to the poor, Naomi’s support of Christian Aid has been her way of putting her faith into action. She's been involved in our work for over 20 years.
‘My support for Christian Aid is part of the fabric of my life.’
The trip to Haiti confirmed Naomi’s belief that her legacy really will improve people’s lives long into the future – ensuring her values of compassion and kindness live on in the years to come.
‘Visiting Haiti showed me just how important the legacy in my Will really is. It’s easy to think the world’s problems are insurmountable. But if we’re helping one person, then that’s one person made in the image of God. And that is unimaginably worthwhile.’
When her mum died, Margaret wanted to do something very special with the money she inherited. When she talked it over with her husband, they realised nothing could be more fitting than a gift to Christian Aid.
‘Mum had supported Christian Aid all her life. So a gift in her memory felt like the perfect thing to do.’
Visiting our work in Haiti proved to be a wonderful way for Margaret to honour her mother’s memory.
‘Mum was a very kind person, a very compassionate person who was always looking for ways to help people. I can’t think of a better or more positive way to remember her. I know how proud mum would have been of all the work that’s being done.’
Kathy’s daughter, Esther, was inspired by a vision of a world where all people can live in peace and plenty. Naomi, too, wants her values to live on after she’s gone.
Your Will is a way of caring for the people closest to you. But, just like Esther and Naomi, you can also use it to reach out to people you've never even met. Some of the poorest people in the world.
Legacies account for 15% of our voluntary income. Without them, projects like the ones in Haiti would not be possible.
For Margaret, making a gift to us was a wonderful way to pay tribute to her mother’s life. It allowed her mother’s passion for helping others to take seed in a country she’d never even visited.
These gifts are special because they can say so much about the life of the person they are honouring, and the love with which the gift has been given. If there’s someone whose life you’d like to celebrate, a gift in their memory could be the perfect lasting tribute.
Gifts given in memory support everything we do, from education programmes to sanitation projects.
Click on the arrows to get an insight not only into the projects we support, but also the courage and resilience of the Haitian people.
Thousands of families like Gabriella’s were displaced by the 2010 earthquake. With GARR’s support, Gabriella is not just building a new home, she’s working to create a sustainable future.
‘Before I came here, I didn’t know how to plant. I learned how to do that here. I used to be in a tent where water flooded through. Now we have safe water to drink, toilets and a place to take a shower. My life has really changed.’
Masselin Messidort is a family counsellor with APROSIFA, a project we support in the slum district of Port-au-Prince. Masselin works with young mothers to help them combat malnutrition in their children.
‘Everything we do here, we do for the future. I know that I may not see the fruits of my labour today. But I’m working for a better tomorrow. My children, my grandchildren will benefit from what I do.’
With our support, VETERIMED provides primary school children with daily milk. Headmaster Jean Emille Alliotte is in no doubt about the benefits.
‘The milk adds so much to their bodies and minds. Sometimes there’s nothing for the kids to eat before they come to school. So to come here and receive some food and milk – not only are they coming to learn, but we’re putting some food in their stomachs.’
Antoinenne is a preschool teacher and member of the APROSIFA team.
‘It’s important to keep in mind that it’s not just the children who are malnourished, it’s their parents, too. We’re doing the best we can to reach as many people as possible. To do this work, it has to come from the heart – you have to love what you’re doing in order to succeed at it.’
APROSIFA also supports young people to use art as a form of therapy. This painting, A Woman of Hope, is by Patrick La Fontant.
‘The roots represent replanting so that we can have new hope and help prevent natural disasters.’
Thanks to APROSIFA, Patrick can pass on his love of art to a new generation: ‘I feel free when I’m painting. I would like to see other young people become more empowered.’
For all three women, the journey started with death, was guided by love and ultimately led to new life.
In Haiti, they saw what happens when their care extends into the world and touches people’s lives. It eases pain, brings hope and spreads joy.
When we make a donation to help others, it isn't a financial transaction, it's a gift of love. And through legacies and gifts in memory, it’s a gift that will live long into the future.