Dolly Parton thanked pop singer Taylor Swift for donating $100,000 to Parton's Smoky Mountains Fire Fund. The Academy of Country Music also donated $100, 000 for the cause. An East Tennessee native, Kenny Chesney, also donated $250, 000.
"The Academy and ACM Lifting Lives are honored to contribute in a meaningful way to Dolly's heroic efforts to help the people of her hometown - and when Taylor heard what we were planning, she offered to match our gift, which gives it that much more impact," stated Executive Vice President and Managing Director of the Academy Tiffany Moon in a statement.
Moon expressed appreciation for Swift as the singer continues to donate and be a part of ACM's charities and assistance to people in need.
"Taylor Swift, I noticed through the years, she's the first to throw herself right into any good cause," Parton said. "Any time anything happens, Taylor's there to make big donations and offer time and money. I'm so thankful to her. I just think she's precious."
All proceeds of the donations will be directed to the Dollywood Foundation My People Fund which will aim to support the families affected by the Smoky Mountain wildfire, many of whom lost homes and properties. The damage caused by the wildfire has caused an estimated total of $500 million lost properties and establishments.
"You never think about a thing like that happening," Parton said. "Especially in the Smoky Mountains -- the most beautiful place, the most-visited national park in the United States. You just think they're supposed just to be there in their glory forever. The only thing I can relate to it is when we had the floods in Nashville and how devastating that was," Parton said.
Parton said that her fund will give out $1,000 every month for six months to families who lost their residence. She aimed to raise at least $10 million, according to ET.
Parton's telethon is entitled "Smoky Mountains Rise: A Benefit for the My People Fund" which will feature herself and other famous singers and artists like Kenny Rogers, Reba McEntire, Big & Rich, Chris Young, Hank Williams Jr., and Cyndi Lauper. It airs on December 13 at 8 p.m. EST on Great American Country.
"My family show at Dollywood is called 'My People,' and so we felt that would be the perfect thing because it's about my people, the ones who aren't blood I could say are good neighbors and feel like family," Parton stated. "And even the fans and the people who come to all our businesses there, they're like family, so they're my people too. It just seemed to be the perfect name for it."