Leave a gift in your will

Remembering the ICRC in your will is a very thoughtful gesture and one of the most impactful ways you can help people caught up in armed conflict.

How it works

If you would like the ICRC to be part of your legacy, you can choose the following options:

  1. Through a specific bequest, i.e by specifying in your will that a specific sum of money or asset is to be passed on to the ICRC.
     
  2. By making our organization the heir or co-heir of your estate. As such, the ICRC becomes the owner of your assets (property, fortunes) as well as your liabilities (debts).
     
  3. By means of a contract, called an "inheritance pact", executed with the aid of a public official, signed by two witnesses. (Only in Switzerland)

How to include the ICRC in your will

Because the term 'Red Cross' is open to a variety of interpretations, please make sure to indicate the full name and address of the ICRC:

International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC)
19 Avenue de la Paix
1202 Geneva 
Switzerland

Please specify the kind of legacy gift you wish to leave. Make sure you sign your will and indicate the place and date of signature. 

Get in touch with us

If you would like to discuss anything related to leaving a donation to the ICRC in your will, please contact us. It will be a great pleasure to help. 

Marie-Jo Girod
Bequests and Donations Manager
Tel: +41 22 730 33 76
Email: mgirodblanc@icrc.org

 

Request our free legacy brochure

Our promise to you

We understand that including a gift in your will is a personal matter that requires time and careful consideration. That is why we want you to know how much we appreciate this very special gesture and promise you that

We will always understand that your own family, friends and loved ones come first in your will.

We will not put pressure on you to include a gift to us in your will – it is your decision.

We will never ask you what size or type of gift you have chosen to make.

We will always respect your privacy – you do not have to tell us your intentions. However, we would like to be able to thank you and to offer a way of having your generosity remembered by future generations.

We fully understand that personal circumstances change and there might come a time when you have to remove the ICRC from your will.

We will use your gift wisely.

We will honour your wishes if you would like your gift to be used in a special way.

Will calculator

Who inherits what and how much? How much can I bequeath freely? 

With the help of our will calculator, you can find out in just a few clicks how your assets will be divided, how large the statutory compulsary portion is and what proportion of your inheritance is freely available to you.

*This service is only applicable to Swiss inheritance law.

Frequently asked questions

  • A will gives us all greater freedom of choice to leave what we want to family and friends and to charities we are passionate about. If you don't leave a will, your estate will be settled in accordance with the law of your country. If you live in Switzerland, the entire estate will be shared among your legal heirs. If you have no heirs, your estate will be awarded to the canton or the municipality where you lived.

    It is also important to remember that you can revoke or change your will at any time.

  • Yes. The act of giving is meaningful, whatever the amount involved. When you write the ICRC into your will, you will have an impact on the lives of victims of armed conflict and you are giving them a future beyond war. Every gift in a will is important to the people we help, however large or small. 

  • Because the term 'Red Cross' is open to a variety of interpretations, please make sure to indicate the full name and address of the ICRC:

    International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), IDE: CHE-105.924.024
    19 Avenue de la Paix
    1202 Geneva
    Switzerland

    Please specify the kind of legacy gift you wish to leave. Make sure you sign your will and indicate the place and date of signature. 

  • It is entirely your choice what you leave in your will and depends on your personal circumstances but can include:

    • A sum of money
    • A percentage of your estate (e.g. 1%, 10% or up to 100%, depending on your personal circumstances and domestic inheritance laws)
    • Shares and other investments
    • A specific item (e.g. a painting or piece of jewellery that you own) 

    If you would like the ICRC to receive all or part of your estate after the death of the original beneficiary (in other words, the ICRC would receive your gift only after the death of your husband/wife/son/daughter), you can specify this in your will. For more information, please contact Marie-Jo Girod. She will be happy to help.

  • In most countries, the ICRC is exempt from inheritance tax on legacies. However, it is a good idea to contact us first to make sure or to seek professional advice.

  • If you would like your legacy to be used in a particular country, such as Syria, or for a particular group of people, such as children, please get in touch so we can discuss your wishes. However, it is worth bearing in mind that our operations in a particular country might come to an end in the future. It is also easier for us to manage a more general request, such as helping to reconnect families, than one confined to a specific group, such as children. Greater flexibility means we can decide how best to use funding at a given time.

  • That is entirely your choice. We are very touched by the solidarity and generosity of people who leave something to the ICRC in their will. We are keen to hear from each and every one of you and to be able to thank you for your gift, but we value your privacy and do not want to put any pressure on you.

    If you would like to talk about designating your gift to a specific region or programme, you might want to talk to us about this so we can ensure your gift is used for the purpose you are most passionate about.

  • We understand that taking care of your family and loved ones will always come first. We are very grateful for any gift you may choose to leave the ICRC after you have looked after them. Please be assured that even the smallest gesture can make the biggest difference in someone's life.

Where does your money go?

93.5%
of donations are used directly for the ICRC's work in the field.

The ICRC budget is financed entirely by voluntary contributions. Every donation is important to us, and we are grateful for each contribution we receive. Your generosity will help us alleviate the suffering of conflict victims worldwide and is a source of encouragement to the ICRC in Geneva and our delegates in the field.

Ituri province, Republic democratic of the Congo. A farmer receives seeds from the ICRC during a distribution. Benita Atosha/ICRC