A special three hour telethon led by superstar, Dolly Parton, was held in Nashville in order to help the victims of the deadly wildfires in Sevier County. Dolly Parton, Alison Krauss, Reba McEntire, Kenny Rogers and more raised millions for the cause.
The "Smokey Mountains Rise: A Benefit for the My People Fund" was a complete success. Many celebrities made appearances during the show to donate. Taylor swift and Paul Simon each donated $100,000. The Academy of Country Music also donated $100,000. The Tennessee Titans gave $144270, while Belmont University donated $155,000. Even a mother who has a son training to be a firefighter donated 100k. What truly giving hearts.
The Dollywood Foundation My People Fund was set up by the Dollywood Company, Dolly Parton herself, and her theaters in order to give aide to those who lost everything during the fire. A number of celebrities, such as Paula Deen and Dailey & Vincent answered telethon phones during the show. Amy Grant, Chris Young and even Cyndi Lauper and Alabama performed.
The money will be used to help those who have lost their homes during the terrible blaze that swept through parts of Tennessee, including historic Gatlinburg. The funds will provide eligible families with $1,000 per month for up to six months, if they lost their rental home or owned their home. The goal is to assist with providing the victims the track back to normalcy after their tragedy.
Dolly Parton and her crew are hoping that the $1,000 during the six months will get people back on their feet. "I think over that time we'll also see people, lives improve, and to get better and have a little bit of a happier ending that it is today," said David Dotson, Dollywood Foundation President.
Dolly remarks, "My home in the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee is some place special. Wildfires have affected many of the people—my people—who live in those beautiful mountains. We want to provide a hand up to those families who have lost everything in the fires. I know it has been a trying time for my people and this assistance will help get them back on their feet."