Hate is not a charitable activity

Gift Trust news

The Gift Trust has developed a new donations policy to ensure that its donors’ funds are not channelled to organisations engaging in ‘hate speech’, inspired by the conversations across Aotearoa in the aftermath of the Christchurch attacks.

The Gift Trust has developed a new donations policy to ensure that its donors’ funds are not channelled to organisations engaging in ‘hate speech’ or ‘hateful activities’. The new policy has been developed partly in response to the Christchurch mosque attacks and the discussions in Aotearoa around hate speech that followed. The Gift Trust has also been inspired by the “Hate Is Not Charitable” campaign launched in the USA earlier this year. This campaign encourages philanthropic trusts and ‘donor-advised funds’ who work on behalf of donors to have proactive policies to ensure that funds do not flow to organisations that promote hatred.

“As a philanthropic trust we have a responsibility to protect the public interest and our stance against hate speech will ensure we do so. We want to play our part in an important conversation in Aotearoa around what is and is not acceptable. We hope our stance encourages other funders and philanthropic trusts to do the same.”
— Executive Director Cheryl Spain

While we do not want to restrict the causes our donors can support, we have a legal and moral obligation to ensure the funding we distribute is used for charitable and educational purposes that promote the public good. Supporting any group who promotes hate speech would undermine this. We want to emphasize that The Gift Trust has not made any donations in the past to organisations that have engaged in hate speech, but we think it is important to have a proactive policy for the future. 

We define “hate speech” as activities that incite or engage in violence, intimidation, harassment, threats or defamation, targeting an individual or group based on their race, colour, religion, national origin, ethnicity, immigration status, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, or disability.  

The Gift Trust already checks each donation request from our donors to make sure the charitable cause they want to support is legitimate and charitable, before we make the donation. This new policy will mean we now also screen for hate speech. The Gift Trust staff will check resources such as the Charities Services regulator, the recipient organisations websites and social media channels, public news sources, the Human Rights Commission and others.

Click here to read our policy.


The Gift Trust’s 2018 -2019 donation recipients

The Gift Trust’s 2018 -2019 donation recipients


“The Gift Trust provides a personalised service for my plan to give, donate and support the causes that are important to me at a reasonable cost.”

— Gillian, Gift Trust donor

"The gift accounts offered by The Gift Trust are a good option for individuals or organisations wanting to consolidate their charitable giving. I encourage all financial advisers to consider this important development."

– Dr Rodger Spiller, Financial Adviser, Money Matters

“An area of importance to our clients is charitable giving. The Gift Trust offers an opportunity to streamline the gifting process, while adding increased confidence and transparency. It also provides robust due diligence of eligible charities and access to additional support services for clients with complex needs.”

— Philip Stevenson, Bloomsbury Associates. CEFEX Certified Investment Adviser

“We would like to recognise and offer thanks for the support we receive though The Gift Trust’s donation. An annual donation from one of your donors is one of the largest donations that Kaibosh receives each year and has been absolutely pivotal to our ability to operate with confidence and to expand our operation across the Hutt Valley. We are extremely thankful.”

— Matt Dagger, Kaibosh, Gift Trust grant recipient

“My gift account has made my giving easy. It lets me get straight to the fun and satisfying part of giving to the causes I care about, without the hassle.”

— Anake, Gift Trust donor

"The Gift Trust provides a flexible and robust structure, to support donors' charitable giving intentions, while still enabling them to have a say in the investment of donated funds."

– David Ireland, Partner, Dentons Kensington Swan

"A Gift Account with The Gift Trust is a great option as an alternative to setting up a charity or private foundation while still preserving clients' control over their giving."

– Steven Moe, Partner, Parry Field Lawyers

"The administration and ongoing compliance requirements involved in setting up a private charity can be onerous, and even risky. Setting up a Gift Account allows The Gift Trust to look after those requirements, and provide support that allows the donor to focus on what they really want to do with their gifts."

– Sue Barker, Sue Barker Charities Law

"The Gift Trust takes the guesswork out of giving. Having support with research and due diligence on donations ensures that funds are truly making the desired impact. It has been a real pleasure to work with The Gift Trust."

– Ben, Gift Account holder

Get in touch

    3 MacDonald Crescent
    PO Box 19120, Marion Square
    Wellington, New Zealand

    04 391 4438