Gift in Your Will

A person’s legacy should be a reflection of their values – the right charity can help their legacy reflect those values in a very meaningful way.  They will want to make sure the charity they select for this will be able to fulfill it.  Beyond that, it’s all technical.  There are many financial tools that can be used, so a donor should feel confident that the charity they choose can treat their estate gift with the best possible advantage.  But for 90% of bequests it’s very simple and the most important thing is an alignment of heart.

Join this group of far-sighted donors. With your help we can bring better care to the women, newborns and families from across the province who depend on BC Women’s.

A growing group of people have decided to leave a gift in their Wills to BC Women’s Hospital + Health Centre Foundation.

These gifts are vital to fund our groundbreaking work in areas such as

  • high risk fetal maternal care
  • HIV/AIDS treatments for pregnant women
  • outreach programs in over 100 communities across B.C.

to name but a few…

Click here to view examples of wording to use in your will.


Real Life Stories

Here are the stories of just a few of the people who have included a gift in their Will to help make more advances in healthcare for the babies, women and families of B.C.


Vernon's story

For those who survived the Great Depression – it is hard to take for granted simple needs like food, shelter and clothing. In many cases the hardship left an indelible mark on those who lived through it. Vernon Hargreaves was one survivor of this tough era.

Read his story...

Leila's story

Giving is inherent in some people’s personality. It could be as small as helping your neighbour mind their children, or a child donating pocket money to charity. For Leila Oldfield, giving generously was part of her everyday life.

Read her story...

We need your support

We've made a lot of progress but still have a long way to go. Your long term support will help to fund our vital work, including:

  • high risk fetal maternal care
  • HIV/AIDS treatments for pregnant women
  • world-class services in breast health
  • substance dependency
  • osteoporosis,
  • reproductive health
  • and outreach programs in over 100 communities across B.C.

Click here to view examples of wording to use in your will.


Please Let Us Know

If you have chosen to remember BC Women’s in your Will and want to let us know, please use our feedback form.

Click here to view examples of wording to use in your will.


Types of Legacy Gifts

In many instances, legacy gifts (or planned gifts) will result in significant tax advantages for you now, and for your estate when you’re gone. If you are including us in your will, our legal name is British Columbia's Women's Hospital and Health Centre Foundation.

There are a few different ways to leave a legacy. The most common are described below.

Residuary bequest

A gift of the remainder of the estate after all other bequests have been made and debts cleared is called a residuary bequest.

Pecuniary bequest

A gift of a fixed sum of money in your Will is called a pecuniary bequest. The value of pecuniary legacies will decrease over time, as the cost of living increases.

Specific bequest

A particular named item left as a gift in your Will is known as a specific bequest - for example, a piece of jewellery.

Contingent bequest

A gift in your Will that depends upon the occurrence of an event which may or may not happen is known legally as a contingent bequest. An example is a bequest to a charity which applies only if other beneficiaries named in the Will die before the testator (person who made the Will).

Life insurance

The Life Insurance Policy option is simple and easy to set up and works the same as other life insurance policies: you pay a yearly premium and receive the tax credits associated with charitable giving. Later, the Foundation receives your life insurance proceeds tax-free. Your gift passes outside your will with no probate delays.

Click here to view examples of wording to use in your will.


How to Leave a Gift in Your Will

In this section, you’ll find practical information on creating and updating your Will.

Making a Will and keeping it up to date is very important - it puts you in control and removes any uncertainty for those left behind. In many instances, legacy gifts (or planned gifts) will result in significant tax advantages for you now and for your estate when you’re gone.

Click here to view examples of wording to use in your will.


Creating Your Will

Before arranging to have a Will written, it is worth drawing up a list of your assets (and your debts) which should give you a clearer idea of what your final estate will look like. You could set it out like the one below:


  • House
  • Cash savings
  • Bank/building society/savings account
  • Shares
  • Bonds
  • Life policies
  • Pension funds
  • Chattels - household contents, jewellery and so on.


  • Mortgage
  • Loans
  • Other debts

Click here to view examples of wording to use in your will.


Examples of Legacy Gift Wording

Click here to view examples of wording to use in your will.



Click here to view glossary.

Click here to view examples of wording to use in your will.


Updating Your Will

It's vital to review your Will regularly to ensure that it reflects your current wishes and circumstances.

Generally you should review your Will every time a 'life event' happens. For example:

  • you marry
  • you have a child/grandchild
  • there is a death in your family
  • there is a change in your financial circumstances
  • there are major changes in the types or rates of taxation
  • you are going to live abroad
  • you are moving to shared accommodation
  • you separate or divorce from your spouse or partner


Preparing for the future

No one likes to think about their own death, but just a short time spent talking to your solicitor and sorting out your affairs now could prevent uncertainty for those left behind. It will also mean that you, not the government, will decide what happens to your property.

If you should die without making a Will (in legal terms this is called dying intestate), the law will determine how your property (or estate) is divided. This can cause great uncertainty and distress for everyone concerned.

If, however, you make a Will, you'll know your loved ones will see your exact wishes being carried out, bringing some comfort during a difficult time.


Be sure to keep your Will current

Keeping your Will current is just as important as making one in the first place. It really is the only way to ensure that your final estate is distributed to your beneficiaries in exactly the way that you want it to be.

If you have further questions which have not been answered here, please contact our Director of Development, James Carruthers at 604-875-2798.  
Mailing address is D310 - 4500 Oak St. Vancouver, BC V6K 3N1


Will Writing Resources

This is by no means an exhaustive list, however, some of these resources may help you get started in preparing your will.

BC Women’s Hospital & Health Centre Foundation does not endorse the information contained at the following links, nor is it responsible for any outcomes you may experience by using any information or services found through the links below.

Leave a Legacy
An international program that helps people to make gifts through a will or other gift planning instrument to the charity or non-profit organization of their choice.

Related:  Leave a Legacy 2015

Canadian Association of Gift Planners
A professional association that brings together charitable representatives with donor advisors for charitable gift planning. Works with donors to achieve their philanthropic goals through tax-wise well-planned giving.

British Columbia Wills
A step-by-step wizard. No lawyer required.

Wills BC
Create a legal Last Will without the costly lawyer fees. Easy.

Free Canadian Will Kit
Last Testament, Living Will, Power of Attorney and easy instructions.

Will British Columbia
Have your Will prepared by a B.C. lawyer online or by phone

Last Will & Testament
Canadian Wills, forms

Will Forms for Canada
Download Canada Last Will and Testament forms for all situations.

Click here to view examples of wording to use in your will.


Where Your Money Goes

The gift you leave in your Will helps thousands of woman and newborns each year. Every gift can make a real difference.

At BC Women’s, every day brings with it the opportunity to make a difference in someone’s life. It is only through the generosity of donors that these opportunities become reality.

Take a look at some of these examples of what your permanent legacy helps to accomplish:

  • Outreach programs which extend to the remote corners of the province, serve over 100 communities.
  • 270 babies lives were saved last year by feeding them from our Human Milk Bank – the only one in Canada.
  • Since our HIV/AIDS drug regimen – developed at BC Women’s – was introduced over 10 years ago, not one HIV-positive baby has been born to an HIV-positive mother on this program.
  • Specialized training for nurses throughout B.C. so that one day women anywhere in the province can get maternity care close to their home communities.
  • Osteofit™, developed in 1997 at BC Women’s assists people with osteoporosis in B.C. Osteofit has been offered at over 70 community centres throughout B.C. and over 300 instructors have been certified. Thousands of people have been helped to find relief from pain and a renewal of their independence.

Click here to view examples of wording to use in your will.