This week, close to 900 victims of last November’s East Tennessee wildfires were set to receive their final check from Dolly Parton’s My People Fund. But instead of delivering the $1000 they were expecting, Dolly surprised each of the Sevier County families with a check for $5000.
The entertainment icon acknowledges she was only able to be so generous thanks to the overwhelming support of her Smoky Mountains Rise telethon in December.
“I want to thank… the thousands of people from all over the country who opened both their pocketbooks and their hearts to help us,” Dolly says.
Starting last December, the Dollywood Foundation issued checks for $1000 a month to victims whose primary residences were destroyed by the wildfires.
“I know $10,000 can’t solve everything,” Dolly adds, “but I do hope the money will help them to dream again.”
Now, the remaining money from the My People Fund will transition to the new Mountain Tough Recovery Team, which will continue to help Sevier County wildfire victims. The Dollywood Foundation plans to give at least $3 million to the effort, which starts June 1 and will be in place for three years.
You can find out more or make a donation at MountainTough.org.
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