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How Gifts in Wills Help

PREP Volunteer
Stroke Activity Group 2019 3

When you make a Will, you leave a legacy of care for your loved ones. A gift in your Will to NICHS provides a similar legacy to people with chest, heart and stroke conditions, funding vital care and support services as well as innovative research into these illnesses.

A life-changing legacy

Gifts in Wills fund more than a third of our life-saving care and support services, as well as our research and other prevention work, such as community health checks and educational talks.

In Northern Ireland almost half of all adult deaths are caused by chest, heart or stroke illnesses. We want to be there caring for people with these conditions and finding ways to prevent them in the first place – which is where gifts in Wills can make a huge difference.

Your Gift could help someone like Sean...

Sean O Hare

Sean O’Hare, 45 from Warrenpoint, underwent a serious heart procedure following a double stroke. He accredits Northern Ireland Chest Heart & Stroke (NICHS) for getting him back in his walking boots.

Prior to his stroke Sean, a teacher, was an extremely active man; a footballer, hill-climber, marathon runner and gym circuits trainer, he trained every day, and often multiple times per day.

Sean says; “Stroke to me was something that happened to really old people, those with a bad diet, who drank too much alcohol or indeed smoked - not me. I am a non-drinker, non-smoker, eat healthily - but it still happened.”

Just a few days prior to his stroke, Sean was climbing Croagh Patrick in Co. Mayo. So, it came as a huge shock when, on a teacher training day in August, he started to feel extremely unwell;

“The power on my left side faded and I could feel my speech becoming a struggle as my face fell on one side. My colleague immediately phoned for help and an ambulance was summoned to my work place.”

“After 5 days in Craigavon Area Hospital they confirmed that I had indeed suffered a double stroke. I had a problem with my heart where the Patent Foramen Ovale didn’t close as it should have when I was a child.”

Following corrective surgery in November 2020, Sean joined NICHS’s PREP (Post Rehab Exercise Programme) and then completed the charity’s ‘Taking Control Self-Management’ course.

Sean says; ‘They were both very good. Brilliant. Top drawer. I couldn’t recommend them enough. The NICHS programs explained what food to eat, what exercise to do, how to deal with fatigue, anxiety and mental strife. It just all fitted into place for me. You get so much out of listening to other people, their stories, how they were coping and dealing with things. You just learn so much.”

Sean would describe his recovery as threefold: a physical, mental and emotional journey. So, following PREP and Taking Control, NICHS signposted him to 6 weeks of counselling support;

“From an emotional perspective, it was exactly what I needed at that time. While your loved ones are there for you, at the end of the day, you always feel like you’re burdening somebody. With the counsellor, it was like I could just expel all the emotions out of my body.”

Sean has been lucky and, after building back his strength gradually, would say he is almost 90% back to his prior self. He is delighted to be back in his hiking boots and returning to school teaching.

Thank you for considering a legacy gift. If you have any questions, please contact our Supporter Care team on or (028) 9026 6743.

  • At least 80p in every £1 raised or donated is spent delivering our life-changing care and prevention services, as well as funding local research into these illnesses.

    How does NICHS spend donations?

    Thanks to our loyal supporters we raised more than £3.35 Million last year to support our programmes across Northern Ireland.

    £1.39 Million was spent on delivering our care support programmes, £576k was spent on delivering our prevention programmes and £736k on local research into chest, heart and stroke related conditions.

    In other words, for every £1 raised, around 80p, went directly to funding our care and prevention programmes as well as research to help fight chest, heart and stroke conditions.

    How you can help

    Over 335,000 people in Northern Ireland are living with chest, heart and stroke conditions, and these illnesses are responsible for 37% of all adult deaths every year. That's almost 6,000 people. Every day across Northern Ireland 11 people will suffer a stroke and 17 will have a heart attack.

    With your support we are able to continue our vital care and prevention work across the community, caring for people who are living with chest, heart and stroke conditions and helping prevent people becoming ill in the first place.

    Support us today and help us lead the fight against chest, heart and stroke illnesses across Northern Ireland.


  • What is Gift Aid?

    Gift Aid is a scheme that allows charities to reclaim tax on a donation made by a UK taxpayer, which means your donations will be worth 25% more to us at no extra cost to you. If you Gift Aid your donations we can claim back from the government 25p for every £1 you donate to Northern Ireland Chest Heart & Stroke.

    This additional income really does make a big difference, so please don't forget to Gift Aid donations if you are a UK tax payer.

    You could make your donation to us NICHS worth even more!

    Whether you are making a cash donation, setting up a regular gift, or asking friends and family to sponsor you in an event, your donation could be worth an extra 25% thanks to the Gift Aid donations scheme. Last year, we were able to reclaim over £74,000 through donations that were gift aided which contributed towards our care and prevention programmes.

    Watch this quick video where money saving expert Martin Lewis explains why everyone should ‘say yes’ to Gift Aid on charity donations!

    Martin Lewis Gift Aid

    Gift Aid Calculator

    How it works:

    Under the Gift Aid scheme, if you are a UK taxpayer, the Government allows charities to reclaim 25p of every pound you give – and it doesn’t cost you an extra penny! With your permission NICHS can re-claim this tax on your behalf.

    Once you’ve read the Gift Aid statement and are happy you can comply with it, simply tick the Gift Aid box to say you agree that NICHS can reclaim tax for you. If you’d prefer to complete a paper version of our Gift Aid Declaration form and post it into our office, you can download a pdf version by clicking on the button below.

    If you’d like to find out how much more your donation would be if it was Gift Aided, just use the calculator below.

    Click here to download a Gift Aid Declaration

    What we need to claim Gift Aid

    • Your full name and home address
    • The donation amount you are giving. We can accept cash also.
    • We can't claim Gift Aid on donations from company accounts. The donation must be your own money and not the proceeds of a collection.
    • For you to confirm that you pay income tax or capital gains tax which at least equals the amount NICHS and other charities and community amateur sports clubs will claim in the appropriate tax year (6 April one year to 5 April the next). This is currently 25p for every £1 you give.
    • Using the declaration form, we can claim Gift Aid on all your donations in the last 4 years and all future donations.
    • Once you have become a Gift Aid donor, please let us know if you stop paying tax or if you change your name/address so that we can update our records.
  • If you would like any further help, or have any questions, please contact Supporter Care on 028 9026 6743 or

  • The work that we do is only possible because of the generous donations that we receive from our supporters. You are very important to us. Thank you so much for helping us in the care and prevention of chest, heart and stroke illnesses across Northern Ireland.

    When you make a donation to Northern Ireland Chest Heart and Stroke, we promise that :

    • Your donation will be used wisely, responsibly and for the purpose given.
    • If a donation is made for a specific purpose we will honour that request.
    • We will safeguard your personal information in line with Data Protection principles.
    • We will communicate with you in accordance with your wishes.
    • Queries or complaints will be responded to as quickly as possible.
    • Administration costs will be kept to a minimum.
    • Your support will be acknowledged and we will keep you updated about how you are helping people who suffer from chest, heart or stroke illnesses.
    • Fundraisers will respect you as a donor and will be transparent in their dealings with you at all times.
    • Fundraisers will work to the highest professional standards and will adhere to the practices and guidelines as directed by the Institute of Fundraising.
    • Where donations are solicited indirectly, i.e. by 3rd party agencies, we recognise that donors have the right to request information about them.

    If you have any questions, please contact Supporter Care on 028 9026 6743 or