Dolly Parton gives millions to wildfire victims
Country music legend Dolly Parton has given nearly 900 families $ 10,000 each after they were forced from their homes by deadly wildfires in Tennessee last year.
The singer-songwriter said the last payments had been made this week to help those affected by the devastating blazes.
The star, whose catalogue of hits includes Jolene and 9 to 5, started the My People fund after wildfires struck last November, killing 14 people in the Gatlinburg area and destroying or damaging thousands of buildings.
As part of the fund-raising effort, Parton, who is from Tennessee, held a star-studded telethon to bring in hundreds of thousands of donations.
However, the singer is not calling a halt to her charitable support.
She has announced $ 3m will be used to start a new fund called Mountain Tough Recovery, which will continue to assist residents affected by the fires.
Parton said the new fund would help meet the emerging needs of people in the area, as they seek to rebuild their lives.
She added: “Things you don’t even think about. For instance, medicine for older people, or people that have maybe been injured in the fire.
“Or people that have jobs, but don’t have transportation that maybe lost their cars in the fire. Lot of them did.
“Just those special needs that you don’t even realise they can go to the Mountain Tough folk.
“So they are set up to take care of that.”